AMBICION collaborates with Keio University Hospital and RIKEN on the clinical trial of the newly developed Natural Killer T (NKT) cell targeted anti-cancer therapy

March 12, 2018

AMBICION starts to supply the investigational product to a phase I study of the newly developed Natural Killer T (NKT) cell-targeted anti-cancer therapy conducted by Keio University Hospital. This clinical trial evaluates the safety and efficacy of an investigational product that activates patient immune system to establish long-term memory and long-lasting anti-cancer responses by the NKT cells. This clinical trial targets patients with advanced/recurrent solid carcinoma of which standard treatments were ineffective or/not established.

The investigational product activates NKT cells, which induce proliferation and activation of various types of immune cells attacking cancer. In animal model, the product has established a long-term anti-cancer immunological memory lasting approximately one year with a single administration and it is expected to sustainably attack cancer cells, resulting in the suppression of its development, recurrence, and metastasis.

Furthermore, there is less concern of allergic reactions, such as anaphylactic shock, compared to allogeneic cellular products, since this cell product is produced using syngeneic but not allogeneic patient blood cells, and it is expected to become an investigational product with an outstanding level of safety.

NKT cells are the immune cell type only expressing a single invariant antigen receptor common to all humans. Also, since this treatment activates the anti-cancer function of the patient immune system rather than directly attacks cancer cells, it is a new concept of anti-cancer immunotherapy that is expected to work for all types of cancers and all humans. This clinical trial is the first where the cell product will be administered to humans. It is hoped that the trial will lead to the establishment of a new cancer treatment method.

The clinical trial product has been developed with the collaborative research of AMBICION, RIKEN, and Keio University. AMBICION is also responsible for the development of this cell product as a regenerative medicine after the phase I study and its industrialization.


Yo Amakusa, MBA
Director of Business Development, AMBICION Co., Ltd. Tel: +81-3-5357-7231 Fax:+81-3-5357-7232