Research ArticleCancer

Targeted antibody and cytokine cancer immunotherapies through collagen affinity

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Science Translational Medicine  10 Apr 2019:
Vol. 11, Issue 487, eaau3259
DOI: 10.1126/scitranslmed.aau3259

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Conjugated bliss

Immunotherapies for cancer are becoming increasingly common due to their impressive ability to activate the patients’ own immune system to fight tumors. However, systemic approaches to immune system activation are not risk free, and immunotherapies are often associated with corresponding immune side effects, which can be severe. To address this problem, Ishihara et al. conjugated immune checkpoint inhibitors and the cytokine interleukin-2 to the collagen-binding domain from a blood protein, allowing them to bind to tumor stroma and exert their effects locally. The researchers tested this approach in multiple mouse models, demonstrating improved efficacy and safety compared to the unconjugated molecules.