Partnership aims to progress personalised cancer therapy by incorporating doggybone DNA

Touchlight and Odimma Therapeutics (Odimma)have formed a partnership to supply and develop clinical material for Odimma’s neoantigen programme.

Touchlight is a company pioneering enzymatic DNA production to enable genetic medicines, while Odimma Therapeutics focuses on personalised cancer immunotherapy.

The collaboration concentrates on the provision of clinical material for use across Odimma’s oncological neoantigen programme. As part of the agreement, Odimma will be able to access Touchlight’s proprietary ‘doggybone DNA’ (dbDNA) vector technology.

This vital availability will provide Odimma with a clinical supply of personalised dbDNA, which will support the development of its candidate immunotherapy cancer treatment. The programme is due to commence with clinical enrolment in 2023.

Odimma’s approach centres around the harnessing of a patient’s own immune system to specifically recognise ‘non-self-targets’ displayed by tumour cells. This represents a significant step change in the field of immune oncology, opening up new opportunities to treat difficult-to-target tumours.

Meanwhile, Touchlight’s doggybone DNA is a double-stranded, covalently closed DNA vector which is produced through an enzymatic manufacturing process. It can accommodate genes of interest of more than 20kb and is linearly scalable, making it highly adaptable to support a range of genetic medicines.

Jean-Marc Limacher, chairman of Odimma, reflected: “The agreement between Odimma and Touchlight is an important step forward to secure Odimma’s clinical development. Not only is Touchlight’s technology producing genetic material with very favourable characteristics for a clinical use but also in a timeframe extremely adapted to a personalised immunotherapy in oncology."

Karen Fallen, chief executive officer at Touchlight, concluded: “We are delighted to be supporting Odimma on this ground-breaking programme. Innovation in enzymatic DNA manufacturing is enabling advancements such as Odimma’s Immunotherapy programme to deliver treatments to critically ill patients.

“With a rapid timeline to GMP and high-fidelity process, doggybone DNA is helping to overcome existing industry bottlenecks and the challenges associated with plasmid DNA,” she added.