Two of the leading areas in medical research today are genetics and immunology. Seattle Genetics is combining these fields to develop new and innovative treatments for cancer. This company, led by Clay B. Siegall, Ph.D., is developing new antibody-anti-cancer drug combinations to treat several types of cancers of the blood and blood-forming tissues. Seattle Genetics scientists are coupling highly specific mono-clonal antibodies to drugs that are toxic to cancer cells but not to normal cells, and which will induce the cancer cells to self destruct. By using antibodies specifically designed to bind to particular kinds of white blood cells, they can very specifically target cancers such as Hodgkin’s lymphoma, non-Hodgkin’s lymphomas and other lymphomas. While Hodgkin’s lymphoma is generally treatable, there has been little in the way of therapeutic agents for use against the other forms of lymphoma. ADCETRIS, the flagship monoclonal antibody-drug conjugate (ADC) under development by Seattle Genetics, is a major step forward in treatment of lymphomas, with over 15,000 lymphoma patients having been treated world-wide. In addition to ADCETRIS, Seattle Genetics has several other specific antibody-anti-cancer drug combinations under development, including SGN -CD33A , and SGN-CD19A, directed against acute myeloid leukemia and non-Hodgkin lymphomas, respectively.
Dr. Siegall, the CEO of Seattle Genetics and a member of its Board of Directors, was a co-founder of the company in 1998. He has a Ph.D. from George Washington University in Genetics, and has held appointments at the National Cancer Institute and Bristol-Myers Squibb Pharmaceutical Research Institute prior to founding Seattle Genetics. While Dr. Siegall has been instrumental in not only establishing the company and guiding its scientific direction, he has also obtained an impressive amount of funding to support the company’s research and development efforts. Under Dr. Siegall’s guidance we can only look forward to more innovative treatments being developed for various cancers by Seattle Genetics.
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