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Aduro Biotech Granted Composition of Matter Patent for Novel Human APRIL Binding Antibodies

Aduro Biotech announced that the United States Patent and Trademark Office has issued a new composition of matter patent related to altered APRIL-binding antibodies, further enhancing the company’s B-select intellectual property portfolio. Specifically, the granted claims cover BION-1301, Aduro’s first-in-class anti-APRIL antibody being evaluated in a Phase 1/2 dose escalation trial for the treatment of multiple myeloma.


APRIL (A PRoliferation-Inducing Ligand) is a member of the tumor necrosis factor (TNF) superfamily and is primarily secreted by bone marrow and/or myeloid cells. APRIL is overproduced in patients with multiple myeloma and binds to BCMA (B cell maturation antigen) and TACI (Transmembrane Activator and CAML Interactor) to stimulate a wide variety of responses that promote multiple myeloma growth and survival and suppress the immune system so that the tumor cells are protected and sustained in the bone marrow.


Aduro is currently evaluating BION-1301, its most advanced proprietary B-select monoclonal antibody, as a novel therapy for multiple myeloma. Despite new treatments recently approved in multiple myeloma, this disease remains incurable as patients relapse, or become resistant to, currently-available therapies. In preclinical studies, Aduro has established that A PRoliferation-Inducing Ligand (APRIL) plays a crucial part in the protective bone marrow tumor microenvironment. In these studies, APRIL, through the B cell maturation antigen (BCMA), was shown to be critically involved in the survival, proliferation and chemoresistance of multiple myeloma, and upregulates mechanisms of immunoresistance, including PD-L1 upregulation. BION-1301, a humanized antibody that blocks APRIL from binding to its receptors, has been shown in preclinical studies to halt tumor growth and overcome drug resistance. In addition, BION-1301 also demonstrated the ability to inhibit immune suppressive effects of regulatory T cells via TACI but not BCMA in multiple myeloma blood and bone marrow. BION-1301 is currently being evaluated in a Phase 1/2 clinical study.

“Blocking APRIL represents a unique approach to treating patients with multiple myeloma and we believe BION-1301 has potential to treat a myriad of oncology indications as well as other autoimmune and inflammatory diseases,” commented Stephen Isaacs, chairman and chief executive officer of Aduro Biotech. “Ensuring a robust intellectual property position around BION-1301 is inherent to advancing the program and the claims granted in this particular patent exemplify the novel science behind this exciting program.”

U.S. patent 9,969,808 adds to previously issued U.S. and international counterpart patents and patent applications that form Aduro’s APRIL patent portfolio. Claims were granted on the basis that BION-1301 enables full blockade of APRIL binding to both its receptors BCMA and TACI. Preclinical studies have demonstrated that blocking APRIL with BION-1301 not only inhibited proliferation and survival of multiple myeloma cells but also alleviated drug resistance and immune suppression, leading to enhanced myeloma cell killing.1 Further preclinical research by Aduro and its collaborators indicate that blocking APRIL further enhances anti-BMCA cytotoxic cell killing and that prevention of APRIL binding to TACI may also be a potentially important mechanism for BION-1301 to inhibit the function of regulatory T cells.2