Abcam is a Cambridge (UK) Biotech who have developed a monoclonal antibody (mAB) production platform from rabbits. This platform is developed for a much more specific immunohistochemical alternative to the traditional Rodent equivalents. Now the most recent generation of mAbs from this platoform is able to detect PD-L1 tumor proteins for immuno-oncology research.
The conventional method of developing humanized monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) uses proprietary antibodies sourced from mice or rats. However, other mammalian sources have also been explored to great effect, from other rodents such as Chinese hamsters, to the more bizarre (e.g. Alpacas). Now rabbits have joined this mAb menagerie, used to target PD-L1 death receptors on tumor cells.
Program-Death ligand 1 (PD-L1) is already a common target for mAbs in immuno-oncology. If expressed on the tumor cells, this enables the cancer to form ligands with PD-1 receptors on T-cells, therefore inhibiting their proliferation (and ‘attack mode’). Engineering mAbs to block these PD-L1 receptors on cancer cells therefore disables this tumor cell self-masking mechanism.