Speaker Profile

M.D., Distinguished Med Research fellow, VP, ARMO BioSciences, Eli Lilly and Company

Dr. Oft is a co-founder of ARMO BioSciences, a late stage immuno-oncology company (now Eli Lilly) and an expert in immuno-oncology with indepth experience in pre-clinical, translational and clinical research and development. He oversaw the development of ARMO’s pipeline including pegilodecakin, from early target discovery through clincal development and was the architect of multicohort phase 1 design for expedited Phase 1 to Phase 3 development. He was a co-founder and CEO of Targenics, which merged with ARMO BioSciences. Prior to this Dr. Oft led discovery and development of immuno-oncology research at DNAX Inc. (now Merck Research Labs), was on the faculty at UCSF Cancer Center and on the Onyx Sorafenib team. He received his MD from the University of Erlangen, Germany with postdoctoral training at the Institute for Molecular Pathology in Vienna, Austria. He is a lead author on publications in Nature, Science and Cancer cell, and authored numerous patents.


Immunotherapy with Pegilodecakin and Anti-PD-1 in NSCLC/RCC
Immunooncology therapies aim to induce activation and expansion of tumor reactive CD8+ T cells. Pegilodecakin induces clonal expansion and activation of tumor reactive T cells and objective tumor responses as monotherapy in patients. Pegilodecakin increases tumor responses and overall survival in combination with chemotherapy of anti-PD-1 (RCC and NSCLC).

Session Abstract – PMWC 2019 Silicon Valley

Session Synopsis: Cancer immunotherapy, and in particular PD-(L)1 blockade, have made a significant impact on the treatment of cancer patients in recent years. However, despite the remarkable clinical efficacy of these agents in a number of malignancies, it has become clear that they are not sufficiently active for many patients. Initial evidence, for example with combined inhibition of PD-1 and CTLA-4 in melanoma and non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC), has highlighted the potential to further enhance the clinical benefits of monotherapies by combining agents with synergistic mechanisms of action. There are multiple potential rational combinations using an immunotherapy backbone, including existing treatments such as radiotherapy, chemotherapy or molecularly targeted agents, as well as other immunotherapies. Rational trial designs based on a clear understanding of tumor biology and drug pharmacology remain critical.

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