Seattle, Fred Ramsdale, REX discussed on The Long Run

The Long Run


Rex is much improved. And so that's been the bulk of the animal data. The human data is very clear based on a left step. We haven't been in humans yet with our molecule. But the human data with Levi scepter or other molecules that I've been involved in developing to plys a map, the anti CD three that's being used in type one diabetes have also shown efficacy in having an effector cell depleting capability. So the clinical data says is that if you can get rid of effector cells while maintaining your T regs that can have a good clinical outcome. So when we put those two things together, we think we have a good combination to work with. When do you think you'll be ready to go to the clinic with your lead program? Yeah, so our 53 O one program, the debulking agent will be in the clinic in Q one of 2022. And our first T reg product we're currently targeting Q three of 2022. Okay, okay. Now, I know you raised a large series B, a couple months ago. Could you talk just a little bit about what that enables you to do with kind of building the company operations out? In doing things that you really couldn't do in academia. Yeah, no, it's been a tremendous, I think it's a tremendous opportunity for us to really do what I really dream of being able to do, which is to really come full circle and test. Is this a drug that's going to work in people, which is what we really want to do. And it's going to do that because of a couple of things. One is it's going to allow us to build several additional clinical programs in other indications. So we'll have a couple of different approaches to being able to test it out, not just in rheumatoid arthritis, but having programs in other diseases as well. It allows us to build our own manufacturing facility. I told you the thing about cell therapy is the cell is the drug and the process is the cell. And so being able to have our own manufacturing facility that we can use to make sure that we're making the best sell that we can is going to be critical in this funding allows us to build our own manufacturing facility. And the third thing it allows us to do is to really start investigating which type of genetic modifications and manipulations can we make to even improve the cell beyond its natural capabilities. Including repair factors so that when you put the cell in, it starts producing the factor that will repair joints or repair neurons or whatever the disease indication, being able to test whether genetic engineering approaches can make a cell that lives longer or functions in sites that are normally hostile to the T reg environment. And so this funding allows our discovery programs to continue more indications to test out and having our own manufacturing capability. Where are you putting the manufacturing? Because I know you're based in South San Francisco. You also have an office in Seattle where Fred ramsdale is. I think you mentioned. Yeah, and the manufacturing facility is going to be in bothel. Buffalo Washington. Yes, north of Seattle. Yeah. Why there? So it seems that, well, you probably know this better than I do living in the Seattle area. Seattle turns out to be kind of a hub for cell therapy. Starting with on and Juno and a number of other company excite was in Seattle. It's really been a hub for cell therapy. You have Fred Hutch, which is a great academic cell therapy site, children's hospital, Seattle. So one of the values that we had in having a place in Seattle is being able to recruit a number of really outstanding people who have a history of cell therapy. And since our translational programs are up in Seattle, they make logical sense for us to take the next step and build our manufacturing there to interface with our translational medicine program. And we actually, as of today, hired our chief technical officer who is going to help us build out that facility in bottle. And so we're really excited about being in that community because it is such a robust cell therapy community. I think this is really interesting. Obviously, the talent pool is super important and the thing that I think drives most site location decisions. But also the fact of proximity, that it that it's close to your translational science people who might be playing around with different kinds of modifications, some of which you mentioned to different cell lines. And you might want to just throw that over the fence to the guys a half hour away in bothel to see, you know, can we make that cell line or can we do it consistently? What does it do? Having, as opposed to having your manufacturing, your cell manufacturing facility, you know, on some other continent. Oh, absolutely. And in fact, it's even more, I think, more important than the just throwing it over the fence to try and which is really you're right. A big plus. It's also making sure that when you transfer a process that's so critical to the drug from the discovery effort from the translation into the manufacturing facility that there's somebody there to make sure that that transition goes well, because so often I have seen things go from a laboratory based small product production, throw it to the big manufacturing facility and they forget that those little things that don't get written down in the notebook well and then all of a sudden things don't work. Growing T regs is hard. This took me 12 years to develop this process. You don't simply throw the process over the fence and expect somebody to do it. So having someplace close, not just helps you try things out that it helps you ensure that the process transfer is robust and reliable. Well, maybe I'll have to take a visit in baffle someday on one of your visits there. You know, Jeff, one of the issues with cell therapy for cancer has been the.

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