Targeting apoptosis: preclinical and early clinical experience with mapatumumab, an agonist monoclonal antibody targeting TRAIL-R1
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In spite of the advances in survival with chemotherapy and radiotherapy, many cancer patients continue to experience failure with treatments. Advances in molecular oncology and the development of numerous targeted therapies, used by themselves or in combination with at present available treatments such as chemotherapy and radiation, will hopefully improve the fate of these patients. It has been well understood for many years now that deregulation of apoptosis is a major hallmark of cancer cells. Mapatumumab, a fully human agonistic monoclonal antibody to TNF-related apoptosis-inducing ligand receptor 1, has been developed to induce apoptosis in cancer cells although having minimal effects on normal cells. This paper reviews the preclinical and early clinical data of this exciting new agent and discusses options for future development of mapatumumab, mostly in combinations with other therapies.
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