First-in-human Phase I Trial of TPST-1120, an Inhibitor of PPARα, as Monotherapy or in Combination with Nivolumab, in Patients with Advanced Solid Tumors

Mark Yarchoan, John D. Powderly, Bruno R. Bastos, Thomas B. Karasic, Oxana V. Crysler, Pamela N. Munster, Meredith A. McKean, Leisha A. Emens, Yvonne M. Saenger, Yasser Ged, Robert Stagg, Steven Smith, Chan C. Whiting, Anne Moon, Peppi Prasit, Yonchu Jenkins, Nathan Standifer, Thomas W. Dubensky, Sam H. Whiting, Susanna V. Ulahannan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose: TPST-1120 is a first-in-class oral inhibitor of peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor α (PPARα), a fatty acid ligand-activated transcription factor that regulates genes involved in fatty acid oxidation, angiogenesis, and inflammation, and is a novel target for cancer therapy. TPST-1120 displayed antitumor activity in xenograft models and synergistic tumor reduction in syngeneic tumor models when combined with anti-PD-1 agents. Experimental Design: This phase I, open-label, dose-escalation study (NCT03829436) evaluated TPST-1120 as monotherapy in patients with advanced solid tumors and in combination with nivolumab in patients with renal cell carcinoma (RCC), cholangiocarcinoma (CCA), or hepatocellular carcinoma. Objectives included evaluation of safety, pharmacokinetics, pharmacodynamics, and preliminary antitumor activity (RECIST v1.1). Results: A total of 39 patients enrolled with 38 treated (20 monotherapy, 18 combination; median 3 prior lines of therapy). The most common treatment-related adverse events (TRAE) were grade 1–2 nausea, fatigue, and diarrhea. No grade 4–5 TRAEs or dose-limiting toxicities were reported. In the monotherapy group, 53% (10/19) of evaluable patients had a best objective response of stable disease. In the combination group, 3 patients had partial responses, for an objective response rate of 20% (3/15) across all doses and 30% (3/10) at TPST-1120 ≥400 mg twice daily. Responses occurred in 2 patients with RCC, both of whom had previously progressed on anti-PD-1 therapy, and 1 patient with late-line CCA. Conclusions: TPST-1120 was well tolerated as monotherapy and in combination with nivolumab and the combination showed preliminary evidence of clinical activity in PD-1 inhibitor refractory and immune compromised cancers. Significance: TPST-1120 is a first-in-class oral inhibitor of PPARα, whose roles in metabolic and immune regulation are implicated in tumor proliferation/survival and inhibition of anticancer immunity. This first-in-human study of TPST-1120 alone and in combination with nivolumab supports proof-of-concept of PPARα inhibition as a target of therapeutic intervention in solid tumors.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1100-1110
Number of pages11
JournalCancer research communications
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2024
Externally publishedYes


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