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Kolltan: Getting around resistance

Kolltan antibodies aim to avoid cancer resistance to tyrosine kinase inhibitors

March 29, 2010 7:00 AM UTC

Kolltan Pharmaceuticals Inc. thinks it has found a way around cancer resistance to tyrosine kinase inhibitors. By binding a functionally conserved epitope on the extracellular domain of tyrosine kinase receptors, the biotech's mAbs can inhibit activation of the receptors even if they have developed a mutation.

According to Joseph Schlessinger, who is a co-founder and chairman of Kolltan's scientific advisory board, most resistance to small molecule tyrosine kinase inhibitors (TKIs) is conferred by mutations in the kinase domain of the receptors. Over time, as a consequence of cellular selective pressure induced by the drugs, more and more of the mutated receptors emerge, and the cancer escapes control...