Avacta Group plc (LON: AVCT), the developer of Affimer® biotherapeutics and research reagents, announced that it is planning to submit an IND/CTA application early in 2020 to test the TMACTM linker in a phase I study in patients with selected solid tumours. In an acceleration of the TMAC programme, Avacta is now in a position to test this critical TMAC linker in humans, a major de-risking milestone for the programme, early in 2020 and well ahead of its original plans. Avacta’s tumour microenvironment activated drug conjugates (TMAC) are a ground-breaking new form of cancer immunotherapy, co-invented with Tufts University Medical School, combining Affimers with chemotherapies in a single drug using a linker that is designed to only release the chemotherapy in the tumour microenvironment. This allows extremely potent chemotherapies, too potent to be given to patients systemically, to be combined with Affimer immune-checkpoint therapies. In order to test the TMAC linker in humans for the first time, a standard-of-care chemotherapy called doxorubicin has been modified with the linker rendering it inactive and harmless until the linker is cleaved in the tumour releasing active doxoru...