July 13, 2024
Cancer Therapy

Groundbreaking Cancer Therapy: POSTECH and ImmunoBiome’s IMB001 Targeting Nutritional Immunity in Tumors

A team of researchers from POSTECH and ImmunoBiome has made significant strides in the development of microbiome-based cancer therapies. Their findings, published in the May issue of Nature Immunology, revolve around a dietary-derived bacterial strain, IMB001, which holds the potential to enhance anti-tumor responses.

The research, spearheaded by Dr. Sin-Hyeog Im, a professor at Pohang University of Science and Technology (POSTECH) and the founder & CEO of ImmunoBiome, has introduced a novel strategy for identifying bacteria suitable for Cancer Therapy. The team further elucidated the mechanism by which these bacteria induce specific immune responses in the body.

IMB001, a unique Live Biotherapeutic Product (LBP), is classified as Lactobacillus plantarum IMB19 (LpIMB19). This single-strain bacterial product has demonstrated remarkable results in preclinical studies for various cancers, including melanoma, renal cancer, breast cancer, and experimental metastasis. In animal models, IMB001 has been observed to delay tumor progression and potentiate the effectiveness of checkpoint inhibitor therapy (anti-PDL1).

The researchers have also isolated the effector molecule, Rhamnose-rich Capsular Polysaccharide (RHP), from the bacteria IMB001. This molecule exhibits promising effects in animal models of cancer, paving the way for a new generation of highly effective and potentially more accessible microbial cancer therapies.

IMB001’s therapeutic action involves manipulating tumor-infiltrating macrophages, skewing them toward an inflammatory phenotype. These activated macrophages, in turn, activate the adaptive immune system, increasing infiltration and activation of IFN╬│+CD8+ T cells. The team is currently in the process of filing Investigational New Drug (IND) applications and planning to initiate a clinical trial in 2025. IMB001 can be used as a combination therapy alongside existing checkpoint inhibitors, offering a viable option for enhancing the efficacy of conventional cancer treatments.

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1. Source: Coherent Market Insights, Public sources, Desk research
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