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Human Monoclonal Antibodies Cross-reacting to Insulin-like Growth Factors IGF-I and IGF-II as Potential Anti-tumor Agents

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The National Cancer Institute's Cancer and Inflammation Program is seeking statements of capability or interest from parties interested in licensing monoclonal antibodies to IGF-1 and IGF-II for the treatment of cancer.
NIH Reference Number
Product Type
  • Dimitrov
  • monoclonal antibody
  • insulin-like growth factor
  • IGF-I
  • IGF-II
Collaboration Opportunity
This invention is available for licensing.
Description of Technology

The National Cancer Institute's  Cancer and Inflammation Program is seeking statements of capability or interest from parties interested in licensing this technology. 

The type 1 insulin-like growth factor (IGF) receptor (IGF1R) is over-expressed by many tumors and mediates proliferation, motility, and protection from apoptosis. Agents that inhibit IGF1R expression or function can potentially block tumor growth and metastasis. Its major ligands, IGF-I, and IGF-II are over-expressed by multiple tumor types. Previous studies indicate that inhibition of IGF-I, and/or IGF-II binding to its cognizant receptor negatively modulates signal transduction through the IGF pathway and concomitant cell proliferation and growth. Therefore, use of humanized or fully human antibodies against IGFs represents a valid approach to inhibit tumor growth.

The present invention discloses the identification and characterization of a fully human monoclonal antibody designated m708.5 that has been affinity maturated against IGF-I and IGF-II and displays extremely high affinities for IGF-I and IGF-II in the picoM range.  The m708.5 antibody potently inhibited signal transduction mediated by the IGF-1R interaction with IGF-I and IGF-II and blocked phosphorylation of IGF-IR and the insulin receptor.  Further, this antibody inhibited migration in the MCF-7 breast cancer cell line at the picoM range.  Therefore, this antibody can be used to prevent binding of IGF-I and/or IGF-II to its concomitant receptor IGFIR, consequently, modulating diseases such as cancer.

Potential Commercial Applications
  • Therapeutic for the treatment of various human diseases associated with aberrant cell growth and motility such as breast, prostate, and leukemia carcinomas.
  • Research regent to study IGF-I and/or IGF-II binding and its association with tumor growth.
Competitive Advantages
  • Antibodies against the ligands IGF-I and IGF-II, such as this invention, inhibit the interaction with IGF-IR yet likely do not have the type of toxicity associated with IGF-1R antibodies.
  • High concentrations of IGF-II are found in cancer patients, on average several fold higher than IGF-I, thus this cross-reacting IGF-I/IGF-II antibody could be more effective than existing IGF-IR and/or IGF-I currently in the clinic.
  • This novel IGF antibody may provide therapeutic intervention for multiple carcinomas.

Dimiter Dimitrov (NCI)

Development Stage

Zhao Q, et al.; Human monoclonal antibody fragments binding to insulin-like growth factors 1 and 2 with picomolar affinity. [PMID 21750218]

Feng Y, et al.; Novel human monoclonal antibodies to insulin-like growth factor (IGF)-II that potently inhibit the IGF receptor type I signal transduction function. [PMID 18283605]

Kimura T, et al.; Targeting of bone-derived insulin-like growth factor-II by a human neutralizing antibody suppresses the growth of prostate cancer cells in a human bone environment. [PMID 20028742]

Patent Status
  • U.S. Patent Issued: U.S. Patent Number 9676846, Filed 12 Apr 2011, Issued 13 Jun 2017
Related Technologies
  • E-217-2005
  • E-336-2005
Therapeutic Area
Friday, May 4, 2018