Leadership in antibody-drug conjugate development
Seattle Genetics is leading the field in developing antibody-drug conjugates (ADCs). ADCs are empowered antibodies designed to harness the targeting ability of monoclonal antibodies by linking them to cell-killing agents.
For more than 20 years, engineered monoclonal antibodies have provided therapeutic benefit to people with cancer, autoimmune diseases and other serious medical conditions. Early antibody-based therapies revolutionized the treatment of cancer by targeting malignant cells and limiting damage to normal tissue. This resulted in therapies that were better tolerated and could be used in combination with chemotherapy to improve patient outcomes without significant increases in toxicities.
While engineered antibodies have provided clinical benefit in several disease indications, many antibodies lack sufficient intrinsic antitumor activity to be used as therapeutics. Seattle Genetics has developed proprietary, industry-leading technology that is the next step in therapeutic antibody-based therapies. Our ADC technology combines the specificity of engineered antibodies with the potent cell-killing effects of chemotherapy.
First FDA-Approved CD30-Directed ADC
Our lead program, ADCETRIS® (brentuximab vedotin), is an ADC that, in collaboration with Takeda Pharmaceutical Company, is approved for two indications in more than 55 countries, including the U.S., Canada, Japan and members of the European Union.
ADCETRIS comprises an anti-CD30 monoclonal antibody attached by a protease-cleavable linker to a microtubule disrupting agent, monomethyl auristatin E (MMAE), utilizing our proprietary technology. The ADC employs a linker system that is designed to be stable in the bloodstream but to release MMAE upon internalization into CD30-expressing tumor cells.
Driving the Field of ADCs
We are conducting significant research activities to continue advancing our ADC technology and are committed to staying the leader in ADC development. There are currently more than 25 ADCs in clinical development using our proprietary technology, including our internal and co-development programs, as well as multiple collaborator programs.
In addition to ADCETRIS, our internal pipeline includes SGN-CD19A, an ADC targeting CD19, SGN-CD33A, an ADC targeting CD33, SGN-LIV1A, an ADC targeting LIV-1, SGN-CD70A, an ADC targeting CD70, as well as ASG-22ME and ASG-15ME, ADCs that we are co-developing with Agensys.
In addition to our auristatin-based ADC technology, which is employed in ADCETRIS and several internal and collaborator programs, we are evaluating another ADC technology using a highly potent cytotoxic agent called a pyrrolobenzodiazepine (PBD) dimer that kills cells by a different mechanism than auristatins. The agent, currently employed by SGN-CD33A and SGN-CD70A, is stably linked to an antibody with our site-specific engineered cysteines, resulting in uniform drug-loading of two PBD dimers per antibody. We call this engineered antibody an EC-mAb. Our proprietary PBD and EC-mAb technologies illustrate our efforts to continue driving the field of ADCs.