Elotuzumab and daratumumab: emerging new monoclonal antibodies for multiple myeloma

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Multiple myeloma (MM) has been mostly incurable due to its highly complex and heterogeneous molecular abnormalities and the support from myeloma microenvironment factors. A therapeutic strategy which effectively targets relevant and specific molecule to myeloma cells, and which is potent in overcoming tumor microenvironment-mediated drug resistance needs to be developed. One of the promising fields is the development of immunotherapy using monoclonal antibodies (MoAbs) against myeloma-specific antigens. This review focuses on the basic and clinical aspects of two emerging and promising novel MoAbs for MM, elotuzumab which targets CS1 and daratumumab which targets CD38. Both antigens are relatively specific to myeloma cells and expressed in more than 90% of MM patients, and mediate adhesion of myeloma cells to bone marrow stromal cells. We also discuss the unique characteristics of the two MoAbs by comparing with other MoAbs being developed for MM.

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