Monday, September 23, 1996
This week's Emerging Company Profile includes two additional stories on A8
and A9 highlighting aspects of therapeutic competition in this antibody area.
Antibody therapies have a long history of ups and downs, the
present being a period of renewed enthusiasm following the success of Centocor Inc.'s ReoPro anti-platelet antibody. One of the lessons of the past 20 years
is that not all antibodies are created equal. The making of a good therapeutic
requires a combination of the right antibody, the right antigen and the right
Coulter Pharmaceutical Inc. was founded in 1995 by Coulter
Corp. and InterWest Partners based on their belief that it has found a combination
worth pursuing. Coulter Pharmaceutical's lead compound is a radioimmunotherapy
consisting of an anti-B1 antibody conjugated with iodine 131. The antibody was
discovered at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in 1978 and approved in 1982 as a
diagnostic owned by Coulter Corp.
The 131I Anti-B1 antibody conjugate targets pre-B and B cells, all of which express CD20, as do more than 95 percent of B cell lymphomas. The conjugate has a dual mechanism of action. The antibody itself triggers apoptosis and recruits an immune system response. The 131