Shark Antibodies that Target Tumor and Viral Antigens

Shark V-NAR (Variable New Antigen Receptor) antibodies are an emerging class of therapeutic candidates. As single domain (heavy chain) antibodies with an extensive antigen-binding repertoire, shark V-NAR antibodies may provide advantages over traditional antibodies. Specifically, the smaller size of shark V-NAR antibodies may provide increased solubility, thermal stability, refolding capacity, and the ability to recognize epitopes that are sterically hindered from recognition by larger antibodies, but without loss of specificity in antigen-binding.

Researchers at the National Cancer Institute's Laboratory of Molecular Biology (NCI LMB) have developed an immunological platform that includes the development of a shark V-NAR antibody phage display library, isolation of specific antibodies that bind to several tumor and viral antigens from the library, and the development of the specific antibodies for treatment of cancer or viral infection. Specific antibody targets for binders include tumor-specific antigens (GPC3 [Clone F1], PD1 [Clone A1], HER2 [Clones A6/A7]), and viral antigens (MERS [Clones A3, A7, A8, B4, and B5] and SARS [Clone O1]).

Anti-glypican 3 (GPC3) V-NAR, Clone F1, is an antibody of immediate interest since it has already shown specific binding to GPC3-expressing tumor cells in vitro. Thus, anti-GPC3 V-NAR represents a viable candidate for development of an antibody-toxin/drug conjugate (ADC and immunotoxin), a bispecific antibody or a chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) against GPC3-expressing tumor cells.

Potential Commercial Applications: Competitive Advantages:
  • Therapeutic use as unconjugated antibodies
  • Therapeutic use as targeting moieties for immunoconjugates such as CARs, ADCs, Immunoconjugates, bispecific antibodies, etc.
  • Diagnostic agent for detecting and monitoring target-expressing malignancies
  • Potential to be first to market with high specificity and binding to targets resulting in less non-specific cell killing, therefore fewer potential side-effects for the patient
  • Small size of antibodies enhances stability, solubility, and target recognition

Development Stage:
Pre-clinical (in vivo)


Mitchell Ho (NCI)  ➽ more inventions...

Mingqian Feng (NCI)  ➽ more inventions...

Martin Flajnik

Intellectual Property:
US Application No. 62/334,194
Foreign Filed Application No. PCT/US2017/031758

Collaboration Opportunity:

Licensing and research collaboration

Licensing Contact:
John Hewes, Ph.D.
Phone: 240-276-5515

OTT Reference No: E-113-2016
Updated: Jun 29, 2017