Novel effective immunotherapies are needed for patients with multiple myeloma (MM), since disease recurrence remains a major obstacle. B-cell maturation antigen (BCMA), a cell surface protein universally expressed on malignant plasma cells , has emerged as a very selective antigen to be targeted in novel treatments for MM. We here first review BCMA-related biology, and then highlight the recent clinical development of a novel afucosylated anti-BCMA monoclonal antibody conjugated with monomethyl auristatin F via noncleavable linker (GSK2857916). Chimeric antigen receptor-expressing T cells targeting BCMA may also induce specific and durable anti-MM responses by patients' own effector cells. Clinical trials testing these two approaches (NCT02064387, NCT02215967) are currently ongoing in relapsed and refractory MM patients.
Keywords: ADC; B-cell maturation antigen; BCMA; BM; CAR-T; CAR-expressing T cells; Fc-engineered therapeutic antibody; MM; antibody drug conjugate; bone marrow; chimeric antigen receptor; microenvironment; multiple myeloma; targeted immunotherapy.