Ocean Biomedical, Inc. announced that its Scientific Co-founder, Jack A. Elias, MD, co-authored new findings in the peer-reviewed journal Immunity that detail the mechanisms behind the role of chitinase 3-like-1 (CHI3L1) in the growth of triple negative breast cancer. The discoveries by a team led by Dr. William Muller at McGill University and in collaboration with Dr. Elias demonstrates that CHI3L1 stimulates neutrophil elaboration of NETs which block T cells from contacting and killing the breast cancer tumor. Additionally, the study provides further evidence of the potential impact of Ocean?s anti-Chi3L1 antibody in reversing this process and suppressing breast cancer tumor growth.

This paper deepens the understanding of how CHI3L1 inhibits the body?s natural ability to fight breast cancer tumors. It reveals for the first time another complex pathway by which CHI3L1 inhibits the immune response to cancer, this time by inducing neutrophil recruitment and NETosis, which blocks T cell infiltration. The paper also provides yet another preclinical demonstration of the effectiveness of Ocean?s Anti-CHI3L1 antibody in reducing the tumor growth by targeting CHI3L1 and reversing the T cell blockade.

This tumor control pathway, the paper asserts, is likely at work in a range of cancers beyond breast cancer, and ?targeting CHI3L1 may promote anti-tumor immunity in various tumor types.? Prior research has established that elevated Chi3L1 levels are associated with many cancers, including glioblastoma, and may be targeted therapeutically. Recent studies from Ocean Biomedical have demonstrated that CHI3L1 is a critical regulator of a number of key cancer-causing pathways, highlighting its ability to inhibit tumor cell death (apoptosis), its inhibition of the expression of the tumor suppressors P53, PTEN, retinoblastoma 1, and Keap1 and its stimulation of the B-RAF protooncogene.

Most recently Dr. Elias?s research team has discovered that CHI3L1 is a ?master regulator? of ICPI, including key elements of the PD-1 and CTLA4 pathways. In accord with the importance of these pathways, Ocean has also generated antibodies: 1.) a monoclonal antibody against CHI3L1, 2.) bispecific antibodies that simultaneously target CHI3L1 and PD-1, and 3.) a new bispecific antibody that simultaneously targets CHI3L1 and CTLA4.