The human immune response is the first line of defense against invading pathogens and abnormal cells, with two distinct systems—innate and adaptive immunity—working together to maintain health. B cells are a key element in the adaptive immune system response because they produce specific, high-affinity antibodies that can bind directly to pathogens or cancer cells. Once the B cells generate antibodies directed at antigens on a specific invader, they mark those invading cells for destruction, acting as a signal beacon to alert other immune cells. By leveraging information directly from the human immune system, we believe that we can develop more effective antibody-based treatments to fight against cancer and infectious diseases.
The Immunome discovery platform identifies novel therapeutic antibodies and their antigen targets by leveraging highly educated memory B cells from patients who have learned to fight off their disease. The engine discovers innovative antibody-target pairs using an unbiased, broad, deep and efficient approach, as we are able to:
- Capture a large number (typically thousands) of patient-derived memory B cells and convert them into stable human hybridomas.
- Interrogate each individual antibody produced by memory B cells against mixtures of disease-related antigens by screening of up to 20,000 antibodies in a single experiment.
- Simultaneously identify relevant, potentially-novel public antigen targets and antibodies that bind to them with high affinity.
- Utilize an unbiased approach that spotlights biological processes of disease relevance, guided by the human immune response.
- Strategically leverage unmodified immunoglobulins as therapeutics because we believe they are simpler to develop.
- Efficiently discover potential therapeutics for use beyond oncology, including infectious diseases such as COVID-19.
Immunome’s research is yielding interesting targets in the oncology and anti-infective spaces. In addition to our internal development programs, we also intend to partner with pharmaceutical companies, universities, government agencies, and global health organizations to develop new treatments that will significantly impact human health.