Press Releases

Avelas Presents Phase 1b Clinical Trial Data for AVB-620 at 2016 San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium

SAN DIEGO, Dec. 8, 2016 — Avelas Biosciences, Inc., a clinical stage oncology-focused company dedicated to improving cancer patient care from diagnosis through treatment, today presented clinical trial data from the company’s recently completed Phase 1b study in breast cancer patients utilizing investigational drug product AVB-620, at the San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium. Jonathan Unkart, M.D., resident physician at Moores Cancer Center at UC San Diego Health, delivered the presentation titled “Intraoperative tumor detection using a ratiometric activatable fluorescent peptide: A first-in-human phase 1 study allows tumors to be visualized in the operating room” on behalf of himself and senior author Anne Wallace, M.D., Director of the Comprehensive Breast Health Center at Moores Cancer Center.

The study represents the first-in-human experience with investigational drug product AVB-620, an activatable fluorescent peptide which is a potential adjunct in surgery for identifying tumors in real time. Dr. Unkart provided details on the safety and early results on proof-of-concept for the use of AVB-620 in identifying breast tumors during surgery. Specifically, no drug-related adverse events were noted in the trial and AVB-620 was able to achieve separation of tumor from adjacent tissues using a fluorescent image in both primary tumors and in lymph nodes.

“This data shows the exciting promise of using a tumor’s biology to improve a surgeon’s precision in the operating room,” said Dr. Unkart. “Knowing that a patient’s breast cancer was fully removed upon first attempt will be of comfort to both patient and doctor, potentially preventing tens of thousands of reoperations each year.”

“I’m delighted to share our successful Phase 1b results, an important milestone for Avelas Biosciences, at the San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium,” said Carmine N. Stengone, president and chief executive officer of Avelas Biosciences. “Looking ahead we plan to move into a Phase 2 clinical trial of AVB-620 in breast cancer in the first half of 2017, while also pursuing expansion opportunities in additional tumor types. Our hope remains that this is a first and important step towards our company goal of creating better outcomes for cancer patients.”

About Avelas Biosciences

Avelas Biosciences is a San Diego-based biotechnology company focused on developing technologies that advance a new standard-of-care for cancer surgery and therapeutic intervention. The company’s lead candidate, AVB-620 has completed a Phase 1b clinical trial assessing safety, pharmacokinetics and fluorescence properties using tissue image analysis. The initiation of a Phase 2 clinical trial for AVB-620 in breast cancer is expected in the first half of 2017. Avelas was founded by Avalon Ventures on technology from Roger Y. Tsien, Ph.D., co-winner of the 2008 Nobel Prize in chemistry and professor of pharmacology, chemistry and biochemistry at University of California San Diego School of Medicine, who passed away in 2016.