J&J quietly punts a pair of early-stage bispecifics for solid tumors

John­son & John­son has put two ear­ly-stage bis­pe­cif­ic an­ti­bod­ies on the back­burn­er, the phar­ma gi­ant re­vealed as part of its quar­ter­ly up­date.

List­ed in the pipeline as re­cent­ly as Oc­to­ber, JNJ-6358 — a bis­pe­cif­ic an­ti­body bind­ing to CD3 on T cells and hu­man leuko­cyte anti­gen G (HLA-G) on can­cer cells — and JNJ-8902 — a CD3 x TM­EFF2 bis­pe­cif­ic — were nowhere to be found in the lat­est pipeline pre­sen­ta­tion.

A spokesper­son con­firmed that while their re­spec­tive tri­als are on­go­ing, these “are not pri­or­i­tized as­sets in our de­vel­op­ment port­fo­lio.” Fierce­Biotech first not­ed the pipeline cuts.

Both of the Phase I tri­als are ac­tive but not re­cruit­ing, the spokesper­son added.

Records on clin­i­cal­tri­als.gov sug­gest­ed both tri­als end­ed up en­rolling few­er pa­tients than ex­pect­ed.

The study for JNJ-6358 tar­get­ed pa­tients with re­nal cell car­ci­no­ma, ovar­i­an can­cer, col­orec­tal can­cer and oth­er ad­vanced sol­id tu­mors. A to­tal of 39 pa­tients were en­rolled be­fore re­cruit­ment stopped, com­pared to 140 orig­i­nal­ly an­tic­i­pat­ed.

In the oth­er tri­al, in­ves­ti­ga­tors en­rolled 82 men with metasta­t­ic cas­tra­tion-re­sis­tant prostate can­cer to re­ceive JNJ-8902 — but scrapped the orig­i­nal 120 goal.

Mul­ti­ple ear­ly-stage pro­grams tar­get­ing prostate can­cer re­main in J&J’s pipeline, as well as an ex­per­i­men­tal ther­a­py for col­orec­tal can­cer, among oth­ers.