Boston Biomedical Announces Orphan Drug Designation by FDA for Investigational WT1 Cancer Peptide Vaccine DSP-7888 in Myelodysplastic Syndrome

CAMBRIDGE, Mass., July 10, 2017 /PRNewswire/ — Boston Biomedical, Inc., an industry leader in the development of next-generation cancer therapeutics, today announced the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has granted Orphan Drug Designation (ODD) for DSP-7888, an investigational cancer peptide vaccine, for the treatment of myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS). MDS is a group of rare blood disorders characterized by abnormal development of blood cells within the bone marrow.1

Currently being studied in phase 1/2 clinical trials, DSP-7888 contains peptides to induce Wilms’ tumor gene 1 (WT1)-specific cytotoxic T lymphocytes (CTL) and helper T cells, which attack WT1-expressing cancerous cells found in various types of hematologic and solid cancers. The National Cancer Institute ranked WT1 as the number one priority target for cancer immunotherapy.2

Approximately 10,000 to 15,000 people are newly diagnosed with MDS in the U.S. annually.3 It is estimated that one third of MDS patients can develop acute myeloid leukemia (AML), a rapidly growing cancer of bone marrow cells.4 The FDA’s ODD program provides special status and development incentives for drugs and biologics which are intended for the safe and effective treatment, diagnosis or prevention of rare diseases/disorders that affect fewer than 200,000 people in the U.S.5

“Receiving an Orphan Drug Designation for DSP-7888 reinforces our dedication to helping address an unmet medical need for people with myelodysplastic syndrome, where other therapies are still needed,” said Patricia S. Andrews, Chief Executive Officer, Boston Biomedical, Inc. “We are committed to uncovering the potential therapeutic benefit of cancer peptide vaccines, and we look forward to advancing the clinical development of this first-in-class compound.”

The first clinical data for DSP-7888, from a phase 1/2 study in patients with MDS who progressed on or after first-line azacitidine (AZA) treatment, were presented at the 2016 American Society of Hematology Annual Meeting and Exposition. In the phase 1 portion of the study, DSP-7888 was well-tolerated in MDS patients, and the data also showed preliminary signs of clinical activity.

This is the third ODD the company has received in the last two years, and is the first one for DSP-7888.

About DSP-7888
DSP-7888 is an investigational cancer peptide vaccine containing peptides that induce Wilms’ tumor gene 1 (WT1)-specific cytotoxic T lymphocytes (CTL) and helper T cells, which attack WT1-expressing cancerous cells found in various types of hematologic and solid cancers. By adding helper T cell-inducing peptides, improved efficacy may be achieved compared to a killer peptide treatment regimen alone.

DSP-7888 is currently being investigated in three monotherapy studies: a phase 1/2 study in myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS) (NCT02436252), a phase 1/2 study in pediatric patients with relapsed or refractory high grade gliomas (NCT02750891), and a phase 1 study in advanced malignancies (NCT02498665). DSP-7888 will also be evaluated in combination with bevacizumab in a phase 2 study in patients with recurrent or progressive glioblastoma; the study is currently recruiting patients (NCT03149003). More information on DSP-7888 and ongoing clinical trials can be found at

About Boston Biomedical, Inc.
Boston Biomedical, Inc. was founded in November 2006 and is wholly owned by Sumitomo Dainippon Pharma Co., Ltd. Boston Biomedical’s mission is to develop the next generation of cancer therapeutics by creating drugs designed to target cancer stemness pathways. Boston Biomedical’s innovation in drug discovery has received a number of recognitions and awards in the United States, including the Frost & Sullivan 2010 North American Drug Discovery Technology Innovation of the Year Award, the National Cancer Institute (NCI) cancer stem cell initiative grant award in 2010, and the 2011 Biotech Pioneer Award at the Alexandria Oncology Summit. The company also received the “Company To Watch” award in the 10th Annual Team Massachusetts Economic Impact Awards in 2013. Boston Biomedical is headquartered in Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA.

Additional information about the company and its product pipeline can be found at

Disclaimer Regarding Forward-Looking Statements
The forward-looking statements in this press release are based on management’s assumptions and beliefs in light of information presently available, and involve both known and unknown risks and uncertainties. Any forward looking statements set forth in this press release speak only as of the date of this press release. We do not undertake to update any of these forward-looking statements to reflect events or circumstances that occur after the date hereof. Information concerning pharmaceuticals (including compounds under development) contained within this material is not intended as advertising or medical advice.

For general inquiries:
Boston Biomedical, Inc.

For media inquiries:
Sara Baker
212- 849-9474

1 National Cancer Institute. General Information About Myelodysplastic Syndromes. Accessed July 2017.
2 Cheever, M., Allison, J.P., Ferris, A.S., Finn, O.J., Hastings, B.M., Hecht, T.T. (2009) The Prioritization of Cancer Antigens: A National Cancer Institute Pilot Project for the Acceleration of Translational Research. Clinical Cancer Research. Accessed July 2017.
3 Montalban-Bravo G., Garcia-Manero, G., List A., Kantarjian H., Cortes J. (2016) Myelodysplastic Syndromes. Cancer Management. Accessed July 2017.
4 American Cancer Society. What Are Myelodysplastic Syndromes? Accessed July 2017.
5 FDA. “Developing Products for Rare Diseases & Conditions.” Accessed July 2017.

SOURCE Boston Biomedical, Inc.

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