A phase I, randomized, observer-blinded, single and multiple ascending-dose study to investigate the safety, pharmacokinetics, and immunogenicity of BITS7201A, a bispecific antibody targeting IL-13 and IL-17, in healthy volunteers
- Published on Tuesday, 08 January 2019 13:02
- Written by Juan Carlos Ivancevich
Inhibition of interleukin (IL)-13, a Type 2 inflammatory mediator in asthma, improves lung function and reduces exacerbations; however, more effective therapies are needed. A subset of asthma patients also exhibits elevated IL-17, which is associated with greater disease severity, neutrophilic inflammation, and steroid resistance. BITS7201A is a novel, humanized bispecific antibody that binds and neutralizes both IL-13 and IL-17.
Safety, pharmacokinetics, and immunogenicity of BITS7201A were evaluated in a phase 1 study. Part A was a single ascending-dose design with 5 cohorts: 30-, 90-, and 300-mg subcutaneous (SC), and 300- and 750-mg intravenous (IV). Part B was a multiple ascending-dose design with 3 cohorts: 150-, 300-, and 600-mg SC every 4 weeks × 3 doses. Both parts enrolled approximately 8 healthy volunteers into each cohort (6 active: 2 placebo). Part B included an additional cohort of patients with mild asthma (600-mg SC).
Forty-one subjects (31 active, 10 placebo) and 26 subjects (20 active, 6 placebo) were enrolled into Parts A and B, respectively. The cohort with mild asthma patients was terminated after enrollment of a single patient. No deaths, serious adverse events, or dose-limiting adverse events occurred. In Part A, 12 active (39%) and 5 placebo subjects (50%), and in Part B, 6 active (30%) and 3 placebo subjects (50%) experienced at least 1 treatment-emergent adverse event (TEAE). The most common AEs were fatigue (n = 3) and influenza-like illness (n = 2). One injection-site reaction was reported. Two subjects with elevated blood eosinophil counts at baseline had transient elevations in blood eosinophils (≥Grade 2, > 1500 cells/μL). In Parts A and B, 16 of 30 (53%) and 16 of 17 (94%) active subjects, respectively, tested positive for anti-drug antibodies (ADAs). No anaphylaxis or hypersensitivity events occurred. BITS7201A exhibited single- and multiple-dose pharmacokinetic characteristics consistent with an IgG monoclonal antibody; exposure generally increased dose-proportionally. Postdose elevations of the serum pharmacodynamic biomarkers, IL-17AA and IL-17FF, occurred, confirming target engagement.
BITS7201A was well tolerated, but was associated with a high incidence of ADA formation.