Introduction: Chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T cell therapy directed against B-cell maturation antigen (BCMA) has shown promising results for the treatment of relapsed refractory multiple myeloma (RRMM). bb21217 is an anti-BCMA CAR T cell therapy that uses the same CAR molecule as idecabtagene vicleucel (bb2121), but adds the PI3K inhibitor bb007 during ex vivo culture to enrich the drug product (DP) for memory-like T cells, thereby reducing the proportion of highly differentiated or senescent T cells. To investigate whether DP properties correlate with clinical outcomes including duration of response (DOR), we conducted extensive molecular characterization of patient DPs.

Methods: CRB-402 (NCT03274219) is an ongoing, multi-center phase 1 dose escalation trial of bb21217 in RRMM patients who received ≥3 prior regimens, including proteasome inhibitor and immunomodulatory agent, or are double-refractory to both classes. In the expansion cohort, patients additionally required prior exposure to an anti-CD38 antibody and were required to be refractory to last line. Planned enrollment is 74 patients, including 50 in the expansion cohort. Patients undergo lymphodepletion with fludarabine (30 mg/m2) and cyclophosphamide (300 mg/m2) daily for 3 days, then receive a single infusion of bb21217 at 150, 300 or 450 x 106 CAR+ T cells. The primary outcome measure is incidence of adverse events (AEs), including dose-limiting toxicities (DLTs). Additional outcome measures include overall response rate and DOR by IMWG Uniform Response Criteria. We profiled DP and apheresis starting material (PBMC) by RNAseq and cyTOF and correlated expression of memory/senescence markers from apheresis to DP with clinical outcomes, including DOR.

Results: Asof March 1, 2020, 46 patients (median age 62 [33-74]) received bb21217, 24 in escalation (12 at 150, 6 at 300 and 6 at 450) and 22 in expansion (8 at 300 and 14 at 450); median follow up for all patients is 8.5 (<1-29) months. Patients had a median of 6 (3-17) prior lines of therapy with 26/46 (57%) triple refractory. Cytokine release syndrome (CRS) developed in 31/46 (67%) patients and included one death (14 G1, 15 G2, 1 G3 and 1 G5). Median time to first onset was 3 days (1-20); tocilizumab (18 pts) +/- corticosteroids (6 pts) was used to manage CRS. Ten (22%) patients developed neurotoxicity [5 G1, 2 G2, 2 G3, 1 G4] with median time to first onset of 7 (3-24) days. Response was assessed per investigator for 44 patients with ≥ 2 months of follow up or PD/death within 2 months. Twenty-four (55%) patients had confirmed response per IMWG criteria including 8 (18%) with ≥CR and 13 (30%) with VGPR. Median time to CR was 2.5 (1-24) months. The median DOR was 11.9 (95% CI: 8.1-17.0) months across target dose levels of 150-450 x106 CAR+ T cells. The 450 target dose was selected as the RP2D and dose expansion is ongoing. bb21217 DPs from 44 patients were characterized. Paired analysis of T cells from PBMC and DP showed bb21217 DP is significantly enriched for memory-like T cells (LEF1+, CD27+, CCR7+) and depleted of highly differentiated or senescent CD57+ T cells. Patients with DPs most enriched for early memory markers (LEF1+, CCR7+ and CD27+) and with low expression of effector/exhaustion markers (EOMES+, GZMA+, CD57+) were more likely to have higher peak CAR+ T cell expansion. To evaluate the association of these DP markers with DOR, we split the 24 responders (≥PR) on median marker expression (high vs low) and analyzed DOR in these exploratory subgroups. High CD127 expression, associated with long-lasting memory T cell formation, was positively correlated with DOR, while multiple markers associated with differentiated T cells (e.g. EOMES+, TBET+) were negatively correlated with DOR.

Conclusions: The adverse events observed are consistent with known toxicities of CAR T cell therapies. Initial efficacy results with bb21217 are encouraging, with 48% of patients treated across target dose levels of 150-450 obtaining ≥VGPR. The presence of T cell markers associated with memory and the absence of T cells markers associated with differentiation/senescence in DP correlated positively with peak expansion and DOR. These preliminary correlative data support the mechanistic hypothesis that enrichment for memory like T cells in bb21217 DP may result in improved clinical outcomes. Data for approximately 14 additional patients at the 450 target dose will be presented.

Disclosures

Alsina:Janssen: Honoraria, Speakers Bureau; Celgene: Consultancy, Honoraria; Amgen: Honoraria, Speakers Bureau; BMS: Consultancy, Research Funding. Shah:GSK, Amgen, Indapta Therapeutics, Sanofi, BMS, CareDx, Kite, Karyopharm: Consultancy; BMS, Janssen, Bluebird Bio, Sutro Biopharma, Teneobio, Poseida, Nektar: Research Funding. Raje:Janssen: Consultancy; Celgene: Consultancy; Immuneel: Membership on an entity's Board of Directors or advisory committees; Caribou: Membership on an entity's Board of Directors or advisory committees; Takeda: Consultancy; Astrazeneca: Consultancy; Bluebird, Bio: Consultancy, Research Funding; Karyopharm: Consultancy; BMS: Consultancy; Amgen: Consultancy. Jagannath:Karyopharm: Consultancy, Honoraria; Legend Biotech: Consultancy, Honoraria; Sanofi: Consultancy, Honoraria; Takeda: Consultancy, Honoraria; Janssen: Consultancy, Honoraria; BMS: Consultancy, Honoraria. Madduri:Janssen: Consultancy; BMS: Consultancy; Takeda: Consultancy; Legend: Consultancy; Sanofi: Consultancy; GSK: Consultancy; Kinevant: Consultancy; Foundation Medicine: Consultancy. Kaufman:Janssen: Consultancy, Honoraria; Karyopharm: Membership on an entity's Board of Directors or advisory committees; Pharmacyclics: Membership on an entity's Board of Directors or advisory committees; Tecnopharma: Consultancy, Honoraria; Amgen: Consultancy, Honoraria; AbbVie: Consultancy; TG Therapeutics: Consultancy, Membership on an entity's Board of Directors or advisory committees; Celgene: Consultancy, Honoraria; Takeda: Consultancy, Honoraria; Bristol-Myers Squibb: Consultancy, Honoraria; Incyte: Consultancy, Membership on an entity's Board of Directors or advisory committees; Sanofi/Genyzme: Consultancy, Honoraria. Siegel:Amgen: Consultancy, Honoraria, Speakers Bureau; Merck: Consultancy, Honoraria, Speakers Bureau; Janssen: Consultancy, Honoraria, Speakers Bureau; BMS: Consultancy, Honoraria, Speakers Bureau; Takeda: Consultancy, Honoraria, Speakers Bureau; Karyopharma: Consultancy, Honoraria; Celulatiry: Consultancy. Munshi:BMS: Consultancy; OncoPep: Consultancy, Current equity holder in private company, Membership on an entity's Board of Directors or advisory committees, Patents & Royalties; C4: Current equity holder in private company; Janssen: Consultancy; Adaptive: Consultancy; Legend: Consultancy; Amgen: Consultancy; AbbVie: Consultancy; Karyopharm: Consultancy; Takeda: Consultancy. Lin:Novartis: Consultancy; Celgene: Consultancy, Research Funding; Bluebird Bio: Consultancy, Research Funding; Juno: Consultancy; Legend BioTech: Consultancy; Merck: Research Funding; Takeda: Research Funding; Gamida Cells: Consultancy; Sorrento: Consultancy, Membership on an entity's Board of Directors or advisory committees; Vineti: Consultancy; Janssen: Consultancy, Research Funding; Kite, a Gilead Company: Consultancy, Research Funding. Jakubowiak:AbbVie, Amgen, BMS/Celgene, GSK, Janssen, Karyopharm: Consultancy, Honoraria, Membership on an entity's Board of Directors or advisory committees; Adaptive, Juno: Consultancy, Honoraria. Timm:bluebird bio: Current Employment, Current equity holder in publicly-traded company. Turka:bluebird bio: Current Employment. Mao:bluebird bio: Current Employment, Current equity holder in publicly-traded company. Martin:BMS: Current Employment, Current equity holder in publicly-traded company. Campbell:BMS: Current Employment, Current equity holder in publicly-traded company. Hege:Arcus Biosciences: Divested equity in a private or publicly-traded company in the past 24 months; Mersana Therapeutics: Current equity holder in publicly-traded company, Membership on an entity's Board of Directors or advisory committees; BMS: Current Employment, Current equity holder in publicly-traded company, Other: Travel, accommodations, expenses, Patents & Royalties: Numerous, Research Funding. Bitter:Novartis AG, Predicant Biosciences, Biospect, F Hofmann-La Roche: Ended employment in the past 24 months; bluebird bio: Current Employment, Current equity holder in publicly-traded company; Novartis: Ended employment in the past 24 months, Patents & Royalties. Petrocca:bluebird, bio: Current Employment, Current equity holder in publicly-traded company. Berdeja:Celgene: Consultancy, Research Funding; Cellularity: Research Funding; Constellation: Research Funding; CRISPR Therapeutics: Consultancy, Research Funding; CURIS: Research Funding; EMD Sorono: Research Funding; Takeda: Consultancy, Research Funding; Servier: Consultancy; Teva: Research Funding; Prothena: Consultancy; Poseida: Research Funding; Novartis: Research Funding; Lilly: Research Funding; Legend: Consultancy; Kite Pharma: Consultancy; Kesios: Research Funding; Karyopharm: Consultancy; Janssen: Consultancy, Research Funding; Glenmark: Research Funding; Genentech, Inc.: Research Funding; BMS: Consultancy, Research Funding; Bioclinica: Consultancy; Bluebird: Research Funding; Acetylon: Research Funding; Amgen: Consultancy, Research Funding; Abbvie: Research Funding; Vivolux: Research Funding.

Author notes

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Asterisk with author names denotes non-ASH members.