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May 05, 2014
 |  BioCentury  |  Product Development

Targeted cargo

TLC, Ablynx putting Nanobodies on liposomes as next-gen ADC cancer agents

Taiwan Liposome Co. Ltd. and Ablynx N.V. are investigating whether combining their technologies can yield next-generation antibody-drug conjugates that deliver more molecules more precisely than existing ADC technologies.

TLC manufactures liposomal formulations of the generic drugs amphotericin B, doxorubicin and alprostadil. While liposomes preferentially accumulate at tumor sites due to abnormal vasculature, the biotech is seeking to actively target liposomes to tumors by adding targeting ligands to the surface.

When the ligand binds to receptors on the target cell, the entire immunoliposome will enter the cell. The immunoliposome will then traffic to the lysosome, where it will release the payload.

"It's an extension of the nanocarrier that we have developed for our other small molecule products - adding the antibody on the surface makes it the next generation of antibody-drug conjugates," said George Yeh, president of TLC.

Yeh said immunoliposomes may be safer than ADCs because they sequester their cargo in a liposome, whereas ADCs rely on linkers that may release their payloads before entering the target cells.

In addition, TLC can deliver up to 10,000 payload molecules per liposome, which means the possible payloads can include traditional systemic chemotherapies like doxorubicin.

In contrast, typical ADCs can incorporate a maximum of about 10 conjugated molecules and thus cannot deliver enough cargo to...

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