Monoclonal antibody therapy in multiple myeloma

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Abstract

The therapeutic landscape of multiple myeloma (MM) has evolved spectacularly over the past decade with the discovery and validation of proteasome inhibitors and immunomodulatory agents as highly active agents, both in front-line therapy as well as in the relapse and maintenance settings. Although previous attempts to apply available monoclonal antibodies (Mabs) to the treatment of patients with MM has until recently been disappointing, novel targets specifically explored in the context of MM have recently lead to the first approvals of Mabs for the treatment of patients with MM. We have performed a literature search to identify preclinical targeting of MM, including in vitro and in vivo models using monoclonal antibodies, as well as clinical trials of monoclonal antibodies in patients with MM. Sources used were peer-reviewed publications, congress abstracts and on-line clinical trials data (such as clinicaltrials.gov). Several targets have been evaluated in preclinical models and a growing number of agents are being evaluated in clinical trials, as single agents or in combination and under various antibody formats. Two agents, targeting for the first time CD38 and SLAMF7, respectively, have recently been approved for the treatment of patients with MM. The recent approval of these two antibodies is expected to have a strong impact on treatment modalities and outcome in patients with MM, including both transplant eligible and elderly patients.

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