THERAPEUTIC APPROACH

The Strength of Arenaviruses as Therapeutics

Arenaviruses are negative-sense, single-stranded RNA viruses that are members of the family Arenaviridae and are genetically very diverse due to specific adaptations to their respective host. The name of this virus family derives from the Latin “arena” for “sand” due to the grainy appearance of particles inside the virus when viewed in cross-section.

One of the best studied arenaviruses classified under the category mammarenavirus is the lymphocytic choriomeningitis virus (LCMV), which normally infects rodents and has four specific properties making it an ideal candidate to aim a patient’s immune system against cancer cells.

Immunestimulation to fight tumor cells

Specific Properties of LCMV

01

MOST POTENT IMMUNE ACTIVATOR IN MOUSE MODELS

02

HIGH RATE OF REPLICATION BUT DOES NOT DESTROY ITS HOST CELLS

03

PROLONGED PERSISTENCE IN HOST CELLS SHOWN IN MICE

04

SPECIFIC REPLICATION IN TUMOR AND ANTIGEN-PRESENTING CELLS

Combined, these unique features of LCMV and possibly other arenaviruses within the mammarenavirus classification, make them ideal candidates for a new treatment modality that induces a maximal immune response towards tumor cells including distant metastases.

Abalos Therapeutics

Our Scientific Foundation

Abalos Therapeutics was founded to translate the innovative research of immunology and virology experts Karl Lang and Philipp Lang into novel anti-cancer therapies. They identified a specific set of mammarenaviruses that preferentially infect and proliferate in cancer cells, which results in a very strong and targeted immune response against the cancer. These findings provided a novel strategy to enable a precise immune response and activate all relevant immune cell types against primary tumors and metastases.

Prof. Dr. Karl Lang

Prof. Dr. Karl Lang

Chair of Immunology at the Medical Faculty, University Duisburg-Essen
Prof. Dr. Philipp Lang

Prof. Dr. Philipp Lang

Director of the Department of Molecular Medicine II, University Dusseldorf
Generation of a maximal immune response

Harnessing the power of mammarenaviruses to treat cancer

We utilize the unique features of mammarenaviruses to generate a maximal immune response specifically targeted against a patient’s cancer and its metastases. With our proprietary Fast Evolution Platform, we generate viruses with optimized anti-tumoral properties such as specific tumor-tropism, infection rate and prolonged tumor persistence that can in turn induce a strong innate and adaptive immune response against the cancer cells. This way, essential natural components of the patient’s immune system are re-programmed to eliminate the malignant tumor tissue.

Abalos’ mammarenavirus candidates display a unique and differentiated mechanism of action:

01

AFTER ADMINISTRATION INTO THE HOST, THE MAMMARENAVIRUS SPECIFICALLY INFECTS TUMOR CELLS

02

THE STRONGLY ENHANCED REPLICATION OF MAMMARENAVIRUSES SPECIFICALLY IN TUMOR AND ANTIGEN PRESENTING CELLS LEADS TO LOCAL ACTIVATION OF A COMBINATION OF PATTERN RECOGNITION RECEPTORS (PRRS)

03

PRR ACTIVATION INDUCES EXPRESSION OF TYPE I INTERFERONS (IFN-I)

04

IFN-I MEDIATES THE EXPRESSION OF INFLAMMATORY CYTOKINES, ENHANCES ANTIGEN PRESENTATION AND RECRUITS MONOCYTES AND CYTOTOXIC CD8+ T CELLS TO THE TUMOR RESULTING IN TUMOR CELL DEATH

05

IN CONTRAST TO SHORT-TERMED ONCOLYTIC APPROACHES, THE PROLONGED REPLICATION AND PERSISTENCE OF THE NON-LYTIC MAMMARENAVIRUS IN THE TUMOR TISSUE HAS THE ABILITY TO TRIGGER A PRECISE AND DIRECTED ANTI-TUMORAL IMMUNE RESPONSE THAT ALSO TARGETS DISTANT METASTASES AND ENABLES A LONG-TERM DISEASE CONTROL

Abalos’ Unique Mechanism of Action

Infection

Virus preferentially infects tumor and antigen presenting cells
Virus preferentially infects tumor and antigen presenting cells

Induction

Viral infection induces cytokine response, which signals and attracts immune cells to the tumor
Viral infection induces cytokine response, which signals and attracts immune cells to the tumor

Invasion

Released cytokines induce TIL (tumor-infiltrating leukocytes) invasion
Released cytokines induce TIL (tumor-infiltrating leukocytes) invasion

Elimination

Cytotoxic CD8+ T cells kill tumor cells (immunogenic tumor cell death)
Cytotoxic CD8+ T cells kill tumor cells (immunogenic tumor cell death)