Track topics on Twitter Track topics that are important to you
Monoclonal antibodies recognise and attach to specific proteins produced by cells.
Types of monoclonal antibodies used to treat cancer cells:
Cancer cells often make large amounts of growth factor receptors which sit on the cell surface and send signals to help the cell survive and divide. Specific MABs are used to stop growth factor receptors from working properly by blocking the signal or the receptor itself, resulting in the cancer cells no longer receives the signals it needs to multiply.
Some monoclonal antibodies have drugs or radiation attached to them. The MAB finds the cancer cells and delivers the drug or radiation directly to them. These are called conjugated MABs.
MABs that have a radioactive substance attached include
Some MABs that have a drug attached are still in clinical trials. They include
Some monoclonal antibodies trigger the immune system to attack and kill cancer cells. Although cancer cells are abnormal, they develop from normal cells so they can be difficult for the immune system to spot. Some monoclonal antibodies simply attach themselves to cancer cells, making them easier for the cells of the immune system to find them. These include
Other types of monoclonal antibodies effect the immune system more directly, for example attaching themeselves to immune cells, such as T-cells, to encourage them to attack cancer cells.