While many successful therapeutics are monoclonal antibodies, the process for discovering these agents remains challenging. Although recent innovations have improved the speed, efficiency, and specificity of fully paired heavy and light chains, a majority of approaches still rely on single-cell sequencing. This can constrain the upper limit on the number of B cells that can be screened in a typical discovery campaign. This limits the diversity of antibody drug candidates, potentially obscuring rare but therapeutically relevant structures.
In this discussion, you will learn about:
Amy Gilbert, PhD, is a vice president in the Drug Discovery division at Adaptive Biotechnologies. Amy received her BA in biology from Middlebury College and completed her PhD in immunology at the National Institute for Health Research Biomedical Research Centre at King’s College London. There she studied novel therapeutic approaches to characterize antibody responses to cancer and activation of innate and adaptive immune responses in melanoma. Amy has more than 20 years of experience in the antibody and cell therapy fields, working at Genentech, Amgen and most recently at Kite Pharma. At Adaptive, she leads a team focused on the discovery of therapeutic immune receptors and their translation into potential novel therapeutics.
Gladys Keitany, PhD, is an immunologist with more than 15 years of experience and expertise in B cell biology and antibody discovery. At Adaptive, she is focused on identifying rare and highly potent antibodies in infectious diseases and autoimmune diseases using Adaptive’s high throughput pairSEQ technology. Keitany earned her PhD in pathobiology and parasitology from University of Washington in Seattle, WA. There she worked to identify vaccine candidates in malaria. Her postdoc, also completed at University of Washington, was focused on development of antigen specific B cells and the impact of drug treatment in the liver stage of malaria.
Ben Rubin, PhD, leads the computational biology team for Adaptive’s antibody discovery platform. At Adaptive, he has developed computational techniques for the B-cell receptor (BCR) pairSEQ platform that allows for bulk sequencing and deep insights into antibody repertoires. These efforts led to the identification of potent and novel antibodies to SARS-CoV-2 during the COVID-19 pandemic, in addition to other infectious diseases. Ben earned his PhD from University of Chicago in Evolutionary Biology leveraging next generation sequencing and was a postdoctoral fellow at Princeton University.
Surani Fernando is a seasoned healthcare journalist and editor with over 13 years experience covering the biopharma industry. A Sydney native, she started her investigative journalism career in London covering clinical trials, M&A and financing deals for BioPharm Insight, later moving to New York to continue her work as an enterprise journalist and editorial leader for GlobalData and Reorg. She is now based in Madrid working as a freelance journalist, consultant writer and podcast producer.