MM-398 is a nanotherapeutic consisting of the chemotherapeutic irinotecan, encapsulated in a liposomal sphere. MM-398 is an investigational agent, designed to rely on the blood flow of the tumor to direct the therapy to the site of the cancer and minimize exposure to non-target cells. In preclinical studies, the chemotherapy loaded liposome is absorbed inside tumor cells, resulting in the delivery of larger quantities of chemotherapy than can be achieved by conventional administration.
In line with Merrimack’s mission to create integrated medicines, we are developing an imaging diagnostic and using our Network Biology approach to simultaneously develop biopsy-based assays, both of which are designed to help identify patients most likely to respond to MM-398 treatment. Our goal is to enable MM-398 to provide a more robust and durable clinical response than observed with conventional chemotherapy.
Our research suggests an opportunity to develop MM-398 in multiple indications.
MM-398 is being evaluated in clinical trials for its ability to treat tumors resistant to chemotherapy across multiple types of cancers, including pancreatic, lung, colorectal and glioma. The FDA and the European Medicines Agency granted MM-398 orphan drug designation in 2011 in metastatic pancreatic cancer. Our Phase 3 study, NAPOLI-1 (NAnoliPOsomaL Irinotecan), is currently underway.
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