NantKwest, Inc. (NASDAQ:NK) was founded in Illinois, USA on October 7, 2002. Its predecessor was ZelleRx Corporation. It was changed to Conkwest, Inc. on January 22, 2010, and was renamed on July 10, 2015. NantKwest, Inc., with 155 full-time employees (3/31/2018), is a pioneering clinical research and development company for cancer immunotherapy.
NantKwest is called a pioneering immunotherapy company because it focuses on the use of natural killer cells (NK) to treat cancer, infectious diseases, inflammatory diseases, and innate immune system diseases without the need for other support Molecules or activated cells, such as T cells.
Natural killer (NK) cells are the first line of human defense. Given their natural defense capabilities, they can quickly find and kill abnormal cells, such as cancer cells, virus cells, and other infected cells, without activating acquired cells. Other supporting molecules (T cells, etc.) needed for immunity.
NantKwest’s immuno-oncology NK platform has multiple modes to induce and kill potential anti-tumor or infected cells:
- Directly enter the ligand expressed by tumor cells, release toxic particles, and kill them;
- Antibody-mediated: by binding antibody combinations to enhance the cancer cell killing effect of the administered antibody, thereby targeted killing of cancer cells;
- Target activation and killing: The known or newly discovered tumor-specific antigens bound to the surface of tumor cells directly enter tumor cells, and toxic particles are released to induce cell death.
NantKwest (Conkwest) investment:
NantKwest submitted its IPO prospectus on June 19, 2015, and went public on July 27, 2015. It plans to raise $172.5 million in funds and is traded on Nasdaq under the stock code: NK!