ADC Therapeutics has announced that the first patient has been dosed in its Phase I clinical trial evaluating the safety, tolerability, pharmacokinetics and anti-tumour activity of ADCT-402 (loncastuximab tesirine), in combination with AstraZeneca's Imfinzi (durvalumab), in patients with advanced diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL), mantle cell lymphoma (MCL) or follicular lymphoma (FL).

The drug is composed of a humanised monoclonal antibody that binds to human CD19, internalising into the cell where enzymes release the PBD-based warhead.

"Data from our 183-patient first-in-human clinical trial of ADCT-402, which were presented at the 60th American Society of Hematology (ASH) Annual Meeting, demonstrated its acceptable safety profile and promising anti-tumour activity as a single agent in patients with relapsed or refractory B-cell non-Hodgkin lymphomas," Jay Feingold, chief medical officer and senior vice president of clinical development at ADC Therapeutics.

"We are now excited to explore the possible impact of ADCT-402 plus durvalumab in patient populations that would greatly benefit from new treatment options.”

The drug, which targets and kills CD19-expressing malignant B-cells, is also being evaluated in an ongoing pivotal Phase II clinical trial in patients with relapsed or refractory (R/R) DLBCL.