Evaxion Biotech’s (Nasdaq: EVAX) shares surged 39.87% to $2.14 in premarket trading. Despite a minor dip of -0.65% to $1.53 in the previous session, the clinical-stage biotech firm focusing on AI-driven immunotherapies experienced a boost after sharing clinical data.
Which Data Has EVAX Presented?
Evaxion (EVAX) recently shared encouraging clinical data at the 2023 ASCO annual meeting regarding its EVX-01 Phase 1 trial for metastatic melanoma. The trial successfully achieved its primary objectives of assessing the safety and tolerability of EVX-01 in patients with metastatic melanoma. Notably, 8 out of 12 patients (67%) exhibited positive clinical responses to the treatment.
Evaxion’s groundbreaking AI technology, known as PIONEER, played a pivotal role in identifying neoantigens, which are high-quality targets for cancer vaccines. These neoantigens were associated with longer progression-free survival rates. The identification of neoantigens by PIONEER marked a significant breakthrough, as it correlated with improved clinical responses and extended progression-free survival. In fact, the response rates observed in this study were nearly double those of historical data for checkpoint inhibitors.
This development positions Evaxion favorably to identify patients who can benefit from personalized cancer immunotherapy in future trials, potentially enhancing the overall patient outcomes. The study demonstrated PIONEER’s effectiveness in identifying vaccine targets that yielded better patient outcomes. Notably, the stratification based on PIONEER scores outperformed tumor mutational burden as a predictive biomarker.
Patients with high-quality neoantigens showcased superior treatment responses and longer progression-free survival rates. Evaluation of treatment-related immune responses revealed strong neoantigen T-cell responses in all 12 patients, mediated by activated CD4+ and CD8+ T cells. Additionally, the magnitude of the immune response correlated with the vaccination dose.
EVAX Validating The PIONEER Platform
The positive correlation between EVAX’s clinical outcomes and immunogenic cancer neoantigens validates the use of the PIONEER platform for developing personalized cancer vaccines. This underscores the importance of a robust AI system in designing neoantigen vaccines. Furthermore, the dose-dependent increase in responses has played a critical role in selecting the appropriate dosage for the ongoing Phase 2 trial. Evaxion (EVAX) eagerly awaits the interim Phase 2 results, which are scheduled to be presented later this year, with high expectations.