The T cell druggable genome – a new target space for cancer drugs

Mainz, Germany, September 6, 2012 – The emerging era of individualized cancer immunotherapy is dramatically changing the target landscape by adding targets that can be recognized by antibodies and T cells, thus significantly increasing the number of druggable tumor targets. In a recent article in the European Pharmaceutical Review, TRON scientists describe a process to generate patient-specific custom-made therapeutic vaccines to provide patients with a more efficacious and less toxic treatment. Currently the targets in a patient tumor are addressed by no more than seven small molecule and monoclonal antibody therapies, while the potential druggable therapeutic target space for T cell vaccination from both mutated and non-mutated antigens is more than 10 times larger. The authors argue that on-demand production of tailored vaccines open the door to an entirely new source of druggable therapeutic targets, the abundant space of individual cancer mutations.


Diekmann, J., Löwer, M., Castle, J.C., Kreiter, S., Türeci, Ö., Sahin, U. (2012) The T Cell Druggable Genome. European Pharmaceutical Review. Vol. 17. Issue 4. 2012.