Theratechnologies Announces Publication in Frontiers in Oncology Journal Highlighting SORT1+ Technology™ for Targeting SORT1-Mediated Vasculogenic Mimicry

Oct 22, 2021

MONTREAL, Oct. 22, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Theratechnologies Inc. (Theratechnologies, or Company) (TSX: TH) (NASDAQ: THTX), a biopharmaceutical company focused on the development and commercialization of innovative therapies, is pleased to announce the publication of a peer-reviewed article demonstrating that the Company’s novel investigational peptide-drug conjugates (PDCs) TH1902 and TH1904, derived from its SORT1+ Technology, are effective in inhibiting vasculogenic mimicry (VM) in in vitro ovarian and triple negative breast cancer (TNBC) models.

The article was published in the science journal Frontiers in Oncology and is titled “New Peptide-Drug Conjugates for Precise Targeting of SORT1-Mediated Vasculogenic Mimicry in the Tumor Microenvironment of TNBC-Derived MDA-MB-231 Breast and Ovarian ES-2 Clear Cell Carcinoma Cells.

“The results published in Frontiers in Oncology showcase for the first time that the sortilin receptor plays a role in the formation of VM, which is associated with cancer progression and resistance. By targeting SORT1, TH1902 and TH1904 have the potential to inhibit VM and cancer cell growth,” said Dr. Christian Marsolais, Senior Vice President and Chief Medical Officer at Theratechnologies. “This recognition by our scientific peers highlights the great potential of our PDCs as a unique and effective vehicle for the potential treatment of many types of cancers in which SORT1 receptors are overexpressed and provides additional evidence that SORT1 plays a major role in the generation of VM, particularly in TNBC and ovarian cancer.”

The article is the first to report that SORT1 plays a key role in VM formation and highlights the novel results from preclinical models evaluating the efficient inhibitory properties of TH1902 and TH1904 against VM in in vitro ovarian and TNBC cell models. These results further support the expectation that TH1902 and TH1904 may alter the VM process by bringing anticancer drugs, like docetaxel and doxorubicin, into SORT1-positive cancer cells.

The article can be accessed online here.

About Vasculogenic Mimicry
The formation of microvascular channels by deregulated cancer cells leads to aggressive, metastatic and resistant cancer cells and is known as vasculogenic mimicry. VM is believed to be associated with tumor growth, resistance and poor prognosis in many types of aggressive cancers including ovarian and TNBC.

About SORT1+ Technology™
Theratechnologies is currently developing a platform of new proprietary peptides for cancer drug development targeting SORT1 receptors called SORT1+ TechnologyTM. SORT1 is a receptor that plays a significant role in protein internalization, sorting and trafficking. It is highly expressed in cancer cells compared to healthy tissue making it an attractive target for cancer drug development. Expression has been demonstrated in, but not limited to, ovarian, triple-negative breast, endometrial, skin, lung, colorectal and pancreatic cancers. Expression of SORT1 is associated with aggressive disease, poor prognosis and decreased survival. It is estimated that the SORT1 receptor is expressed in 40% to 90% of cases of endometrial, ovarian, colorectal, triple-negative breast and pancreatic cancers.

The Company’s innovative peptide-drug conjugates (PDCs) generated through its SORT1+ TechnologyTM demonstrate distinct pharmacodynamic and pharmacokinetic properties that differentiate them from traditional chemotherapy. In contrast to traditional chemotherapy, Theratechnologies’ proprietary PDCs are designed to enable selective delivery of certain anticancer drugs within the tumor microenvironment, and more importantly, directly inside SORT1 cancer cells. Commercially available anticancer drugs, like docetaxel, doxorubicin or tyrosine kinase inhibitors are conjugated to Theratechnologies’ PDC to specifically target SORT1 receptors. This could potentially improve the efficacy and safety of those agents.

In preclinical data, the Company’s SORT1+ TechnologyTM has shown to improve anti-tumor activity and reduce neutropenia and systemic toxicity compared to traditional chemotherapy. Additionally, in preclinical models, SORT1+ TechnologyTM has shown to bypass the multidrug resistance protein 1 (MDR1; also known as P-glycoprotein) and inhibit the formation of vasculogenic mimicry - two key resistance mechanisms of chemotherapy treatment.

About TH1902
TH1902 combines Theratechnologies’ proprietary peptide to the cytotoxic drug docetaxel. TH1902 is currently Theratechnologies’ lead investigational PDC candidate for the treatment of cancer derived from its SORT1+ Technology™. The FDA granted fast track designation to TH1902 as a single agent for the treatment of all sortilin-positive recurrent advanced solid tumors that are refractory to standard therapy. TH1902 is currently being evaluated in a Phase 1 clinical trial for the treatment of cancers where the sortilin receptor is expressed.

The Company is also evaluating TH1904 in preclinical research, a second PDC derived from its SORT1+ TechnologyTM TH1904 is conjugated to the cytotoxic drug doxorubicin.

The Canadian Cancer Society and the Government of Quebec, through the Consortium Québécois sur la découverte du médicament (CQDM), contributes a total of 1.4 million

About Theratechnologies
Theratechnologies (TSX: TH) (NASDAQ: THTX) is a biopharmaceutical company focused on the development and commercialization of innovative therapies addressing unmet medical needs. Further information about Theratechnologies is available on the Company's website at, on SEDAR at and on EDGAR at

Forward-Looking Information
This press release contains forward-looking statements and forward-looking information, or, collectively, Forward-Looking Statements, within the meaning of applicable securities laws, that are based on our management’s beliefs and assumptions and on information currently available to our management. You can identify Forward-Looking Statements by terms such as "may", "will", "should", "could", “would”, "outlook", "believe", "plan", "envisage", "anticipate", "expect" and "estimate", or the negatives of these terms, or variations of them. The Forward-Looking Statements contained in this press release include, but are not limited to, statements regarding the use of TH1902 and TH1904 for the potential treatment of sortilin-positive TNBC and other sortilin-expressed cancer types, and the conduct of our clinical trial with TH1902.

Although the Forward-Looking Statements contained in this press release are based upon what the Company believes are reasonable assumptions in light of the information currently available, investors are cautioned against placing undue reliance on these statements since actual results may vary from the Forward-Looking Statements. Certain assumptions made in preparing the Forward-Looking Statements include that: the current COVID-19 pandemic will have limited adverse effect on the Company’s operations and its business plan; the Company will succeed in pursuing the conduct of its Phase 1 clinical trial using TH1902; preclinical in vitro results will be replicated into humans; research and development activities using peptides derived from its SORT1+ TechnologyTM will yield positive results allowing for the development of new drugs for the treatment of cancer; and the Company’s business plan will not be substantially modified.

Forward-Looking Statements assumptions are subject to a number of risks and uncertainties, many of which are beyond Theratechnologies’ control that could cause actual results to differ materially from those that are disclosed in or implied by such Forward-Looking Statements. These risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to, those related to or arising from: the adverse impact of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic on (a) the Company’s sales efforts and sales initiatives, (b) the capacity of the Company’s suppliers to meet their obligations vis-à-vis the Company, (c) the Company’s research and development activities, (d) the health of the Company’s employees and its capacity to rely on its resources, as well as (e) global trade; the Company’s ability to successfully conduct its Phase 1 clinical trial using TH1902 in various types of cancer; the Company’s capacity to acquire or in-license new products and/or compounds; and the Company’s estimates regarding its capital requirements.

We refer current and potential investors to the “Risk Factors” section of our Annual Information Form dated February 24, 2021 available on SEDAR at and on EDGAR at as an exhibit to our report on Form 40-F dated February 25, 2021 under Theratechnologies’ public filings for additional risks related to the Company. The reader is cautioned to consider these and other risks and uncertainties carefully and not to put undue reliance on Forward-Looking Statements. Forward-Looking Statements reflect current expectations regarding future events and speak only as of the date of this press release and represent our expectations as of that date.

We undertake no obligation to update or revise the information contained in this press release, whether as a result of new information, future events or circumstances or otherwise, except as may be required by applicable law.

For media and investor inquiries:
Leah Gibson
Senior Director, Investor Relations