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Biomedicines 2014, 2(4), 359-383; doi:10.3390/biomedicines2040359

Monoclonal Antibodies against the MET/HGF Receptor and Its Ligand: Multitask Tools with Applications from Basic Research to Therapy

1
Department of Health Sciences, Università del Piemonte Orientale, via Solaroli 17, 28100 Novara, Italy
2
Laboratory of Exploratory Research, Candiolo Cancer Institute, Str. Prov. 142, 10060 Candiolo, Italy
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 6 October 2014 / Revised: 21 November 2014 / Accepted: 24 November 2014 / Published: 3 December 2014
(This article belongs to the Special Issue New aspects of the Hepatocyte Growth Factor/c-Met System)
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Abstract

Monoclonal antibodies can be seen as valuable tools for many aspects of basic as well as applied sciences. In the case of MET/HGFR, they allowed the identification of truncated isoforms of the receptor, as well as the dissection of different epitopes, establishing structure–function relationships. Antibodies directed against MET extracellular domain were found to be full or partial receptor agonists or antagonists. The agonists can mimic the effects of the different isoforms of the natural ligand, but with the advantage of being more stable than the latter. Thus, some agonist antibodies promote all the biological responses triggered by MET activation, including motility, proliferation, morphogenesis, and protection from apoptosis, while others can induce only a migratory response. On the other hand, antagonists can inhibit MET-driven biological functions either by competing with the ligand or by removing the receptor from the cell surface. Since MET/HGFR is often over-expressed and/or aberrantly activated in tumors, monoclonal antibodies can be used as probes for MET detection or as “bullets” to target MET-expressing tumor cells, thus pointing to their use in diagnosis and therapy. View Full-Text
Keywords: agonist monoclonal antibodies; antagonist monoclonal antibodies; tyrosine kinase receptor; tumor therapy agonist monoclonal antibodies; antagonist monoclonal antibodies; tyrosine kinase receptor; tumor therapy
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Prat, M.; Oltolina, F.; Basilico, C. Monoclonal Antibodies against the MET/HGF Receptor and Its Ligand: Multitask Tools with Applications from Basic Research to Therapy. Biomedicines 2014, 2, 359-383.

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