Kinnate Biopharma plans to sack around 70% of its workforce and stop the development of three programmes as a result of its strategic review.

The company expects to retain 28 full-time employees after the layoffs are concluded, per the 18 September press release.

The US-based oncology company has also decided to consider strategic alternatives for the exarafenib monotherapy programme and the asset KIN-3248, which is designed for use in cancers with FGFR2 and FGFR3 alterations.

Despite the clearing of KIN-7136’s investigational new drug application (IND), Kinnate will also not be going ahead with its Phase I trial. The strategic review reflects multiple factors that include its cash runway and the commercial potential of its programmes, based on the 18 September update.

Although exarafenib was well tolerated by patients in a Phase I trial (NCT04913285), it displayed limited anti-tumour activity in subjects with Class II alterations. The company has decided to cease the clinical development of the exarafenib monotherapy program partly based on the data and its assessment of development timelines for Class II fusion-driven solid tumours.

Exarafenib is a pan-RAF inhibitor, which is aimed at cancers with BRAF and NRAS-driven alterations.

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In the case of exarafenib, the company will now focus on its combined use with binimetinib in NRAS mutant melanoma. Kinnate plans to select two doses for the further development of the regimen in Q4 2023.

In the same quarter, Kinnate plans to file an IND application for its compound KIN-8741, a c-MET inhibitor that is primarily being studied in non-small cell lung cancer. The company added both KIN-8741 and KIN-7136 to its pipeline in April 2023.

Beyond this, the company will execute measures that will push down its operating expenses such as separating from the employees of its China-based subsidiary Kinnjiu Bipharma.

Kinnate acquired an ownership stake in the Chinese pharma company in February 2023.

The company predicts that its $204.3m cash reserves will last until at least Q2 2026.