Activation of the GAS6/AXL signaling pathway causes tumor invasion and metastasis, and high levels of GAS6 and AXL have been strongly associated with drug resistance, rapid disease progression, and lower survival. Current attempts to target this important pathway have fallen short, causing either undesirable off-target effects or limited efficacy. To circumvent these challenges, Aravive is taking the entirely novel approach of targeting the GAS6 ligand, rather than the AXL protein.
Aravive’s lead product candidate batiraxcept (formerly AVB-500) is an ultra-high affinity decoy protein that captures GAS6, thereby potentially stopping the migration and invasion of tumor cells into healthy tissue. In preclinical studies, batiraxcept has been shown to suppress serum GAS6 to undetectable levels and correspondingly decrease metastatic disease.
In clinical studies to date, batiraxcept has demonstrated a favorable safety profile and compelling early clinical activity in cancer patients. Batiraxcept’s impressive safety and tolerability profile suggests it could be ideal for use in combination with many anti-cancer drugs or as a maintenance therapy. Our proprietary biomarker is supporting development of batiraxcept in multiple oncology indications.