At Teclison, we focus on patients first and are devoted to developing science-driven and innovative treatment options to improve the lives of cancer patients.
Teclison was founded with the vision of assembling leading scientists, advisors, and other leaders with significant pharmaceutical expertise to develop groundbreaking therapies for cancer. The complexity of the tumor microenvironment requires a deep scientific understanding to guide judicious combinations of therapeutic agents with potential synergistic activity and the ability to identify biomarkers to select patients most likely to achieve significant, durable responses to treatment. Since our inception, our focus has primarily been targeting well-understood biological pathways where the biology had not yet yielded high-quality medicines.
Our mission is to develop new drugs to treat cancer and other diseases with strong unmet medical need.
To Solve A High Unmet Medical Need In CancerTeclison’s goal is to solve the poor prognosis for solid tumors with liver metastasis. Liver metastasis is also the most common cause of cancer death. Even with the success of immune checkpoint inhibitors in cancer treatment, solid tumors with liver metastasis respond much poorer to immune checkpoint inhibitors compared with the same metastatic cancer patients without liver metastasis.
The most prominent example is metastatic colorectal cancer (mCRC) without DNA mismatch repair defect, which comprises 96% of all mCRC and is the #2 cause of cancer death. Almost all mCRC patients have liver metastasis and do not respond to immune checkpoint inhibitors.
Current Prognosis and Treatment of mCRCOnly 4% of mCRC patients with DNA mismatch repair defect have a chance to respond to anti-PD-1 immune checkpoint inhibitor and do better. The remaining 96% of metastatic colorectal cancer patients are treated with conventional chemotherapy based on combinations of fluorouracil/leucovorin, irinotecan, oxaliplatin, along with targeted agents such as VEGF or EGFR inhibitors. However, once patients failed two lines of standard chemotherapy, their chance of response to subsequent FDA-approved chemotherapy or immune therapy (under clinical trials) is no more than 2%, with a median survival no more than 7 months. Hence this population of mCRC patients will need a new effective approach.
Current Poor Response of Solid Tumors with Liver Metastasis to Immune Checkpoint InhibitorsMetastatic cancer lesions in liver are protected by the strong immune suppressive environment in liver. Liver has a big population of immune cells called macrophages. There are two types of macrophages in terms of their immune functions, M1 and M2. The M1 macrophages present tumor antigens to immune system and activate anti-tumor immunity. In contrast, the M2 macrophages cause tumor tolerance, and suppress the development of anti-tumor immunity. Because the resident macrophages in liver are all M2, this explains why tumor lesions in liver are protected from immune therapy and do not respond.
When chemotherapy or target agents are used to treat solid tumors with liver metastasis, these therapies predominantly induce tumor cell death through apoptosis, and their dead cell bodies are engulfed by M2 macrophages in liver, which suppress the development of any anti-tumor immunity so immune checkpoint inhibitors will not work. To solve this problem, Teclison designs a new strategy to induce tumor necrosis, which distinguishes from apoptosis by disrupting the plasma membrane to release damage associated molecular patterns (DAMPs) from cells to induce inflammation, attract extra-hepatic M1 macrophages to migrate to the necrotic tumor for phagocytosis and present tumor antigens to immune system. The enhanced anti-tumor immunity can be further enhanced by a combination of immune checkpoint inhibitors.
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