An antibody-drug conjugate (ADC) consists of a cytotoxin covalently linked to a monoclonal antibody (mAb) that recognizes an antigen differentially overexpressed on tumor cells.1 This allows for sensitive discrimination between malignant and healthy cells.1
Treating cancer with cytotoxic agents introduces a risk of systemic adverse events.
Binding of the ADC to the recognized antigen triggers internalization and degradation of the mAb, which releases the cytotoxin inside the cell.
Ideally, ADCs may help provide a wider therapeutic index with potentially fewer side effects than "free" cytotoxic agents.
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