Aratana Therapeutics ($PETX) announced January 5 that it has won full USDA approval for AT-004, its drug to treat B-cell lymphoma in dogs. The company believes AT-004 is the only species-specific monoclonal antibody to be fully approved for marketing in the animal health industry, it said in a press release.
AT-004 fights lymphoma by targeting the protein CD20, which is commonly expressed in B-cell lymphoma. It is a canine version of the human monoclonal antibody Rituxan, a Roche ($RHHBY) blockbuster used to treat non-Hodgkin's lymphoma in people. Dogs with the disease have traditionally been treated with standard chemotherapy, which can cause serious side effects and is often ineffective. Veterinarians will now be able to offer AT-004 as an additional choice. more