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Merus, Sema4 Partner to Accelerate Enrollment in Zenocutuzumab Trial

NEW YORK – Dutch oncology company Merus has partnered with Sema4 to identify patients with solid tumors who harbor NRG1 fusions and are eligible to enroll in the ongoing Phase I/II eNRGy trial evaluating its bispecific antibody zenocutuzumab.

That trial is assessing the safety and anti-tumor activity of zenocutuzumab monotherapy. Patients will be enrolled into three cohorts: NRG1-positive pancreatic cancer; NRG1-positive non-small cell lung cancer, and other NRG1-positive solid tumors. To enroll in the study, patients must have a documented NRG1-positive tumor identified by PCR, next-generation sequencing, or fluorescence in situ hybridization.

Under the partnership, Sema4 will perform NGS-based testing to determine whether cancer patients harbor NRG1 fusions and increase awareness of their eligibility for the eNRGy trial. "Our next-generation genomic testing solutions deliver critical information to oncologists and their patients, enabling them to make informed treatment decisions," Sema4 CEO and Founder Eric Schadt said in a statement.

The eNRGy trial is expected to enroll up to 250 participants at 40 sites. The trial's primary endpoints are assessing safety and tolerability, overall response rate, duration of response, and the correlation of anti-tumor activity and biomarkers. Andrew Joe, chief medical officer of Merus, said in a statement that the partnership with Sema4 could help accelerate enrollment in the study.

Merus is also working with Caris Life Sciences to use its whole-exome DNA and whole-transcriptome RNA sequencing services to enroll patients into eNRGy.

Earlier this year, Sema4 also partnered with Janssen to identify patients for its oncology trials and started a collaboration with artificial intelligence informatics company VieCure to streamline access to genetic testing and clinical trials for cancer patients.