New antibody therapies fight cancer, drum up investment

By Marie-Morgane LE MOEL

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Antibodies can be used in different ways to fight cancer. They can target and destroy the proteins necessary to produce cancer cells or act to regulate the immune response.

The current boom on therapeutic antibodies is happening in some degree because of this newly discovered wide variety of uses. As described the first trials tried to simply replicate how the immune system deals with cancer, making antibodies that specifically recognize the cancer cells and mediate the immune response. The newest therapies are no longer so simple. Directly poisoning the cancer, making it change properties, guiding chemo or radio therapy specifically to the tumors. Some approaches even make use of recombinant viruses to deliver genes so the body can make the antibodies itself.

Great things are expected from these new therapies, even if only one in a hundred end up being useful that would still mean a huge advancement.

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Antibody therapies are offering promising treatment breakthroughs for cancer and other illnesses, generating greater investor interest more than 20 years after they were first commercialised.

Big money around the corner for biotech firms.

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Big money around the corner for biotech firms.

Imagine that, making money from making deadly diseases less deadly. The nerve of some people to charge for saving lives.

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