Merck Bets Moderna's Cancer Vaccines Can Prime Patients For Immunotherapy
The companies will work together to develop personalized cancer vaccines against several tumor types, including an effort to pair a personalized vaccine with Keytruda.
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Phase IIb KEYNOTE-942 study shows mRNA-4157/V940 paired with Keytruda reduces risk of recurrence and death in post-surgical melanoma patients compared with Keytruda alone.
The company will pay Moderna $250m upfront to develop and commercialize a personalized cancer vaccine for melanoma in combination with Keytruda.
SVP Elliott Levy said the company hasn't ruled out a tumor-agnostic approach for AMG 510, but Phase I data for the first-in-class drug show a bigger effect in lung cancer – a 50% response rate, so far – than in colorectal cancer patients with a KRAS G12C mutation.