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Am J Obstet Gynecol. 2010 Dec;203(6):582.e1-7. doi: 10.1016/j.ajog.2010.07.041. Epub 2010 Sep 25.

High-grade, chemotherapy-resistant ovarian carcinomas overexpress epithelial cell adhesion molecule (EpCAM) and are highly sensitive to immunotherapy with MT201, a fully human monoclonal anti-EpCAM antibody.

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  • 1Division of Gynecologic Oncology, Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology, and Reproductive Sciences, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, CT 06520-8063, USA.



We evaluated the expression of epithelial cell adhesion molecule (EpCAM) and the potential of MT201 (adecatumumab), a human-monoclonal-antibody that targets EpCAM against chemotherapy-resistant ovarian disease.


EpCAM expression was evaluated by real-time polymerase chain reaction and flow cytometry. Sensitivity to MT201 antibody-dependent cell-mediated cytotoxicity (ADCC) and complement-dependent cytotoxicity was tested in 4-hour chromium-release assays. The effect of interleukin-2 on MT201 ADCC was also studied.


High messenger RNA expression by real-time polymerase chain reaction and high EpCAM surface expression by flow cytometry was detected in 71% of ovarian cancers (5 of 7 cell lines). Although these cell lines were highly resistant to complement-dependent cytotoxicity and natural killer-dependent cytotoxicity in vitro (range of killing, 0-7%), EpCAM-positive cell lines showed high sensitivity to MT201 ADCC (range of killing, 27-66%). Incubation with interleukin-2 further increased the cytotoxic activity against EpCAM-positive ovarian cancer cell lines.


MT201 may represent a novel, potentially highly effective treatment option for patients with ovarian carcinoma whose body is harboring disease refractory to chemotherapy.

Copyright © 2010 Mosby, Inc. All rights reserved.

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