The progression of complex diseases like cancer, immune-mediated and neurological conditions often involves multiple disease pathways. Medicines that attack one target can bring benefits to patients, but researchers see room to advance the science even further. Enter bispecifics.
“A ‘bispecific’ is a biological therapy that binds to two different targets with the goal of enhanced effectiveness in treating diseased tissues,” says Susan Morgan-Lappe, Ph.D., associate director, oncology discovery, AbbVie. “With bispecifics, we are researching how we can deliver a one-two punch against the disease.”
How can bispecifics be created? One way is through a technology platform with a complicated name: Dual-Variable Domain Immunoglobulin (DVD-Ig) proteins. DVD-Ig allows two antibodies that target different disease pathways to be combined into a single medicine that blocks the functioning of two distinct targets.
Imagine attacking diseases like cancer or rheumatoid arthritis in two different ways with one single medicine; that’s what research on bispecifics is trying to achieve.