First of a new breed of anticancer antibodies approved in Japan


The first in a new class of immune-oncology drugs has been approved for use in Japan. Ono pharmaceuticals’ Opdivo (nivolumab) has been approved for treating melanomas where surgery is impossible.

Nivolumab is part of a new wave of cancer therapies that encourage our immune systems to fight cancers or enhance their performance. It targets programmed cell death (PD1) receptors that are expressed on tumour cell surfaces to ward off detection by the immune system.

Ono developed the monoclonal antibody in conjunction with US biotech Medarex, which was acquired by Bristol-Myers Squib (BMS) in 2009. BMS is developing the drug outside of Japan, Korea and Taiwan.


Related Content

First biosimilar antibody drugs approved in Europe

11 September 2013 Business

news image

European commission gives final approval to generic infliximab copies

Business roundup

29 September 2011 Business

news image

Industry news, October 2011

Most Commented

Noble gas joins σ-hole interaction crowd

29 May 2015 Research

news image

Surprising ‘aerogen bonding’ completes set of p-block groups exhibiting the phenomenon

The nuclear danger of iodine

20 May 2015 Comments

news image

It may not be an element you think of as problematic. But, as Mark Foreman explains, iodine causes very complicated problems ...