ARTICLE | Tools & Techniques

Kiss of death

February 27, 2006 8:00 AM UTC

Compounds based on Micromet AG's bispecific T cell engagers technology have been in the clinic for four years, but only now has the company been able to explain in detail how BiTE molecules work. In the February issue of Molecular Immunology, company researchers showed that BiTEs induce the formation of cytolytic synapses, a natural mechanism by which T cells trigger cell death.

BiTEs are bispecific antibodies that bring together an immune effector cell and a target cell by linking the epitope recognition domains of two different antibodies using single-chain antibody technology. One epitope is recognized on an immune effector cell such as a cytotoxic T lymphocyte, and one epitope on a target cell, such as a tumor cell...