Immunologic Research

, Volume 39, Issue 1–3, pp 271–278 | Cite as

Monoclonal antibody mechanisms of action in cancer



Monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) are used extensively as treatment for cancer. A variety of mechanisms are thought to play important roles in mediating the observed anti-tumor effects of mAb. These include signaling mediated by cross-linking of surface antigen that leads to cell death, blocking an activation signal that is necessary for continued cell growth, antibody-dependent cellular cytotoxicity (ADCC), complement mediated cytotoxicity (CMC) and the ability of mAb to alter the cytokine milieu or enhance development of an active anti-tumor immune response. In this review the in vitro, animal model and clinical results supporting each of these varied mechanisms is summarized as is the potential for these mechanisms to interact with each other.


Antibody dependent cellular cytotoxicity (ADCC) Complement Immunotherapy Lymphoma Breast cancer Signaling induced apoptosis 


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Copyright information

© Humana Press Inc. 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Medicine and The Graduate Program in ImmunologyThe University of IowaIowa CityUSA

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