Dr. Tsuji is working on discovering specific cancer antigens for malignant mesothelioma. A new study from the Gunma University of Health and Welfare shows a new anti-mesothelioma antibody for the diagnosis and treatment of mesothelioma.
The use of antibody drugs is becoming more popular in the treatment of mesothelioma. Antibody drugs are immunotherapy treatments. They recruit your body’s germ-fighting immune system to fight against mesothelioma.
One the of biggest problems with mesothelioma immunotherapy is a lack of biomarkers.
Mesothelioma is Difficult to Diagnose and Treat with Biomarkers
Mesothelioma is a rare and aggressive cancer often caused by asbestos exposure. Malignant mesothelioma is characterized by poor prognosis and short survival.
Malignant mesothelioma is considered a treatment-resistant (intractable) cancer. Clinicians and researchers often call mesothelioma an “indistinct” cancer. This is because we don’t have good cancer genetic biomarkers and it is difficult to diagnose.
Antibody drugs use anti-tumor immune activity to attack cancer cells. To work at their best, they need a strong genetic biomarker. This genetic biomarker tells the immune system which cells are mesothelioma cancer cells.
A New Anti-Mesothelioma Antibody
Dr. Tsuji is looking for a biomarker for mesothelioma that could be used to develop anti-mesothelioma immunotherapies. This biomarker will help in the diagnosis of mesothelioma. And it will help in the development of targeted treatments.
Results published in Glyco Forum report that the antibody SKM9-2 shows high sensitivity for mesothelioma. This means scientists can use SKM9-2 as a mesothelioma biomarker.
SKM9-2 antibodies are drawn to mesothelioma almost like magnets. And these cancer-seeking antibodies can be used in a few different ways.
First, clinicians introduce SKM9-2 antibodies into the body, those antibodies go to work to find mesothelioma tumor cells. Clinicians can use this technique with clinical imaging to find and diagnose mesothelioma. They can also use these antibodies to create more effective anti-cancer treatments.
SKM9-2 has not yet been established as a traditional antibody drug. Dr. Tsuji working to develop SKM9-2 as a new-generation antibody drug.
Tsuji, Shoutaro. “Medical Applications of SKM9-2, an Antibody That Recognizes Glycopeptides.” Glycoforum 25 (2022): A5. https://doi.org/10.32285/glycoforum.25A5