The immune system is a powerful weapon against disease, infections and defective cells. Because cancer cells are the body’s own mutated cells, they are not always recognized by the immune system as invaders. Also, cancer cells have multiple ways to evade, shut down or overpower an immune attack. Immunotherapy is a broad category of cancer therapies designed to stimulate the body’s immune system to better recognize and fight cancer.
Among immunotherapies used to treat cancer are:
Checkpoint inhibitors work by disrupting the cancer cells’ signals, exposing them to the immune system for attack. Certain protein receptors located on the surface of immune cells help them differentiate healthy cells from cancer cells. Cancer cells can send signals to the immune cells at certain checkpoints that tell the immune system they are normal cells. Checkpoint inhibitors block those signals and expose the cancer cells for attack.
Avacta Group Plc (LON:AVCT) offers reagents and therapeutics based on Affimer technology for diagnostic and research applications in the United Kingdom. The company’s custom Affimer products are also used in drugs and biomarkers discovery in biotech research and development.