IL-2 is an enticing immunotherapy because it is a powerful mediator of T cells in the immune system. However, as a therapeutic, IL-2’s lack of selectivity has been a barrier, and its clinical use has been severely limited due to toxicity.

Our lead cis-targeted immunotherapy, AB248, is a fusion protein that selectively activates the interleukin 2 (IL-2) receptor pathway on CD8+ T cells.

AB248 has demonstrated highly compelling anti-tumor activity in multiple preclinical tumor models, showing superior efficacy to other IL-2 therapies currently available and in clinical development for the treatment of cancer.

In contrast to native IL-2, AB248 drives selective, unparalleled expansion of CD8+ T cells. AB248 elicits minimal activation of Tregs, which counteract productive immunity, and minimal activation of other IL-2 responsive cell types that may contribute to dose-limiting toxicity.

Native IL-2 activates multiple subtypes, including those that diminish efficacy and drive toxicity.

AB248 potently and selectively expands CD8+ T cells, while avoiding the activation of undesired immune cell types.

Click to see
the effect of
AB248 cis-targeting

Asher Bio plans to investigate the use of AB248 in multiple solid tumor indications as monotherapy and in combination with PD(L)-1 checkpoint inhibitors. In addition, AB248’s robust effect on CD8+ T cells may have therapeutic benefit in cell therapy and in treatment of certain infectious diseases, which is a pipeline program for potential future clinical investigation.

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