Sangamo Presenting New Data at CROI 2013 Which Demonstrates Persistant Immune System Improvements AFter Treatment with ZFN's SB-728-T
Sangamo BioSciences, Inc. (Nasdaq: SGMO) announced new data from its program to develop a 'functional cure' for HIV/AIDS in two presentations at the 20^th Conference on Retroviruses and Opportunistic Infections (CROI), held in Atlanta from March 3 to 6, 2013.
The first presentation described data from the SB-728-T Phase 1 study (SB-728-902, Cohorts 1-3) demonstrating that SB-728-T treatment of HIV-infected subjects leads to durable reconstitution of the immune system driven by increases in total CD4+ central memory T-cells (T[CM]) and CCR5-protected T[CM]. T[CM] are long-lived, self-renewing cells that have the ability to remember and react against foreign antigens including HIV. The data also showed that certain cell surface marker and gene expression profiles may predict which patients will likely respond best to SB-728-T treatment.
"These important data extend our understanding of why SB-728-T treatment improves the immune system as well as the conditions required for optimal engraftment of ZFN-modified T-cells," said Dale Ando, M.D., Sangamo's vice president of therapeutic development and chief medical officer. "They confirm that SB-728-T meets the key immunologic requirements for immune reconstitution in HIV-infected individuals. In addition, analysis of cell surface marker and gene expression profiles of immune system cells in subjects who show superior responses to treatment in terms of increased T-cell counts provides us with important indicators that will aid us in the optimization of our clinical trials."
"The ability of SB-728-T to durably reconstitute the immune system in HIV-infected subjects after a single treatment has never been observed before with any other therapeutic approach," commented Rafick-Pierre Sekaly, Ph.D., Co-Director & Chief Scientific Officer, The Vaccine & Gene Therapy Institute of Florida (VGTI Florida), whose laboratory carried out the analysis. "Improvement in the overall health of the immune system of HIV-infected individuals, as demonstrated by treatment with SB-728-T, is a key step along the path to developing an immunologic approach to controlling and potentially eliminating the virus. We have analyzed the cells that constitute this unprecedented elevation of total CD4+ cell counts, extending our previous observations that the increase is primarily due to durable expansion of the central memory T-cells. Importantly, the level of ZFN-dependent CCR5 gene disruption is sustained in these cells, which is critical for the durable success of this approach."
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