Will Monoclonal Antibodies be More Helpful than Traditional Cancer Therapies in Increasing the Long-Term Survival Rate of People?
Monoclonal antibodies are drugs that are particularly designed to mimic the benefit of natural antibodies and their ability to fight against chronic diseases including cancer. Monoclonal antibodies have changed the perspective of doctors to treat cancer and various other illnesses such as Covid-19.
Nowadays, cancer is becoming a leading cause of death worldwide, with millions of people diagnosed every year. Traditional cancer treatments such as chemotherapy and radiation have been the go-to options for decades, but they come with a host of side effects that can be debilitating for patients. In recent years, monoclonal antibodies have emerged as a promising alternative for cancer treatment.
Recently, FDA has designated the new research of Orphan Drug to ZB131 for the treatment of pancreatic cancer. ZB131 is a proprietary monoclonal antibody that is designed to target cancer-specific plectin with greater specificity and affinity. This monoclonal antibody is expected to be greatly helpful for patients suffering from solid tumors including cholangiocarcinoma, ovarian, and pancreatic cancers.
Currently, according to a report published by Research Dive, the rising pervasiveness of cancer among individuals globally is expected to augment the growth of the global cancer monoclonal antibody market in the upcoming years. The market is anticipated to garner a revenue of $106,825.10 million and rise at a CAGR of 7.0% over the analysis timeframe from 2022 to 2031. The major players of the market include Merck & Co., F. Hoffmann-La Roche Ltd., Johnson & Johnson, and many more.
Why are Monoclonal Antibodies Highly Effective than Traditional Cancer Therapies?
- Specificity: Traditional cancer therapies such as chemotherapy and radiation work by killing rapidly dividing cells, which includes cancer cells but also affects other faster-growing cells in the human body, such as those in the digestive tract and hair follicles. This leads to side effects such as hair loss, nausea, and diarrhea. In contrast, monoclonal antibodies are designed to only target cells, minimizing damage to healthy tissue and reducing side effects.
For instance, recently in Africa, a physician and clinical epidemiologist at Ifakara Health Institute (IHI) said that making B cells that can copy the immune system of the human body can help in treating cancer more effectively than usual standard methods. mAbs (monoclonal antibodies) are called so because they are generated by a single clone of B cells and can have exact copies of the same protein. They can be produced as many times as per the requirement.
- Ability to Stimulate Cancer Cells: Cancer cells often have mechanisms in place to evade detection by the immune system, but monoclonal antibodies help to flag cancer cells for destruction by the immune system. This can help to eliminate cancer cells and prevent the development of new tumors.
- Potential to Deliver Long-Term Results: traditional cancer therapies often require multiple rounds of treatment, and cancer cells can sometimes develop resistance to these therapies over time. While monoclonal antibodies can be designed to target specific proteins that are essential for cancer cell growth and survival. By blocking these proteins, monoclonal antibodies can effectively “starve” cancer cells and prevent them from growing and dividing.
Several monoclonal antibodies have already been approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for the treatment of cancer, including trastuzumab (Herceptin), for breast cancer, rituximab (Rituxan) for lymphoma, and cetuximab (Erbitux) for head and neck cancer. These drugs have shown promising results in clinical trials, with many patients experiencing long-term remission and improved quality of life.
Recent Developments of Monoclonal Antibodies (mAbs)
In recent years, there have been several notable developments in the field of monoclonal antibodies, some of which are discussed below:
- Chimeric Antigen Receptor (CAR) -T Cell Therapy: CAR T-cell therapy is a type of immunotherapy that uses genetically produced T-cells to target cancer cells. This approach involves the use of mAbs to direct the T-cells to cancer cells and has shown remarkable results in treating certain types of leukemia and lymphoma.
- New Targets: Researchers are continuously identifying new targets for monoclonal antibodies, including proteins that are specific to certain types of cancer cells. For example, mAbs targeting the CD19 have shown promise in treating B-cells lymphomas, and mAbs targeting the protein PD-L1 have been approved for the treatment of certain types of lung cancer.
Monoclonal Antibodies: A Favorable Approach to Treat Various Types of Cancers More Effectively
Monoclonal antibodies represent a promising new approach to cancer treatment that can offer significant benefits over traditional therapies. Their high specificity and ability to stimulate the immune system make them highly effective at targeting cancer cells while minimizing damage to healthy tissue. Additionally, their capability to offer long-term results gives hope to patients who may have previously limited options for treatment.
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