Research evidence to address the IVIg demand
Our scientists have published several paradigm-altering studies. A previously unknown mechanism of platelet destruction in ITP was uncovered that suggests new ways to diagnose and treat this bleeding disorder. In a mouse model of FNAIT, IVIg restored blood vessel formation, preventing intracranial hemorrhage and improving placenta function. In another study, researchers learned how hemolytic disease of the fetus and newborn (HDFN) is prevented by anti-D (a specific type of IVIg), and discovered that mixtures of recombinant antibodies might be an effective substitute. In searching for potential IVIg replacements, several have been identified [e.g. CD44 antibodies, a fusion protein, phagocytosis inhibitors and desialylation inhibitors]. Our researchers have discovered predictive factors to help identify patients who will respond poorly to IVIg thus potentially reducing adverse outcomes and costs.
Based on this research, three patents were filed for treatment of autoimmune disease using IVIg substitutes. If these drugs are found safe and effective in patients, they could provide lower cost alternatives to IVIg. The research will also inform clinical practice.