While the role of antibodies is quite clear in the sphere of immunology, researchers are still working on explaining the various mechanisms of action involved here.
The effectiveness of toxin-neutralizing antibodies is considered to be mediated through the interaction of the variable region of the antibody and the toxin; however, recent studies suggest that the constant region (Fc) of antibodies also influence efficacy.In this issue of the Journal of Clinical Investigation
, Jeffrey Ravetch and colleagues at The Rockefeller University demonstrate that engineering the Fc domain of anti-toxin antibodies increases toxin neutralization activity through enhancing the interaction between toxin-targeting antibodies and the Fc receptor on immune cells. The authors found that mice expressing humanized FcR were better protected from anthrax toxin when given engineered anti-anthrax toxin antibodies. This study suggests that engineering the Fc domains of antibodies can be used as a strategy to enhance antibody efficacy.