J. Joseph Melenhorst, Ph.D., University of Pennsylvania
Laurence J. N. Cooper, M.D., Ph.D., Ziopharm Oncology
Sean Sanders, Ph.D., Science/AAAS
The field of immuno-oncology has exploded in the clinic, in the press, and on Wall Street, particularly regarding the use of genetically modified immune cells to fight cancer. This “explosion” is largely due to the success of chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T-cell therapy. The fields of immunology and gene therapy have converged to harness recombinant viruses to deliver “living drugs” with remarkable clinical efficacy, especially for patients with blood cancers. Multiple approaches to engineer immune cells—mostly T cells but also other immune cell types—make use of CARs, while tumor-specific T-cell receptors continue to gain a foothold...
The monoclonal antibody therapy market is rapidly expanding with all major pharmaceutical companies seeking approval of more antibody drug modalities each year. In addition, many of the blockbuster monoclonal therapeutics are nearing the end of their patents and the opportunity for biosimilars looms in the marketplace.
Researchers look to anti-idiotype antibodies to study new monoclonal therapeutic candidates, to better understand the efficacy of existing monoclonal therapeutics and to evaluate the development of biosimilars. An anti-idiotype (anti-ID) antibody is specific to the unique antigen binding (variable) region of another antibody. In this case, the anti-idiotype is specific to the monoclonal therapeutic or its biosimilar.