Navrogen Enters into CRADA with The U.S. National Cancer Institute for the Clinical Development of NAV-001, an Anti-Mesothelin Antibody-Drug Conjugate

Philadelphia, PA, November 07, 2022 — Navrogen, Inc. announced today that it has entered into a Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (CRADA) with researchers at the U.S. National Cancer Institute (NCI), part of the National Institutes of Health.  Under this CRADA, Navrogen will sponsor the clinical investigation of the experimental antibody-drug conjugate, NAV-001, under the supervision of Dr. Raffit Hassan, Chief of Thoracic and GI Malignancies Branch at the NCI.

NAV-001, which targets tumors expressing the cancer antigen mesothelin, was developed by Navrogen in collaboration with researchers at the NCI, including Dr. Ira Pastan, Distinguished Investigator and chief emeritus of the NCI Center for Cancer Research’s Laboratory of Molecular Biology, Dr. Mitchell Ho, Deputy Chief of the Laboratory of Molecular Biology, as well as Dr. Hassan.

“Because of this collaborative team effort, we have been able to engineer an antibody that targets a unique region of mesothelin, which avoids immunosuppressive factors and is conducive to more effective delivery of NAV-001’s payload” stated Luigi Grasso, Ph.D., Chief Scientific Officer of Navrogen. “NAV-001 has proven to be very effective with single, sub-mg/kg dosing against various patient-derived tumor types in mouse models, causing significant regression of the cancer lesions.”  

Based on the robust efficacy of NAV-001, this CRADA represents a stepping-stone to advance the program to clinical testing in highly responsive cancers identified from preclinical studies, including triple-negative breast, metastatic colon, non-small cell lung, and mesothelioma cancers.

About NavrogenTM  Inc.

Navrogen is a biotechnology company focused on the discovery of tumor-produced Humoral Immuno-Oncology (HIO) factors that are associated with suppressed humoral immunity, poor prognosis and limited therapeutic response of immune-mediated anti-cancer therapies. The company’s mission is to develop first-in-class agents that can overcome the immunosuppressive effects of HIO factors by employing its proprietary screening and engineering technologies as well as diagnostic assays that can identify patients whose tumors produce HIO factors to advise physicians on therapeutic options. For more information, please visit


Nicholas Nicolaides                                    

President and Chief Executive Officer     


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Steven Kyriakos

VP Finance and Operations


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