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Therapy for heparin-induced thrombocytopenia (HIT) targeting the epitope structure of the disease –inducing antibody



Technology Overview


Roughly 12 million patients are exposed to heparin annually and up to 1% of these patients will develop heparin-induced thrombocytopenia/thrombosis (HIT), a life-threatening complication where patients make antibodies that bind to the heparin/PF4 complex, resulting in thrombosis and thrombocytopenia. The Greene lab has identified and compared two antibodies respectively named KKO and RTO. KKO recognizes PF4 and stabilizes the complex with heparin, a critical initiating step in the pathogenesis of HIT. Conversely, RTO binds to an epitope that overlaps with KKO on the surface of PF4, preventing PF4 tetramerization, a critical step for the pathogenesis of HIT. This knowledge of KKO and RTO will support the development of an antibody assay to diagnose and/or monitor the progression of HIT but also the development of non-anticoagulant treatment. 





• Knowledge of the first crystal structure of PF4 in a complex with Fabs

• Provides  novel target epitope for diagnosing and the development of non-anticoagulant therapeutics for HIT

• Potential to decrease misdiagnoses, decrease rates of complications, and decrease mortality  


State of Development


Solved crystal structure of PF4 in complex with antibodies

In vivo data showing RTO prevent HIT induced by KKO


Intellectual Property

USSN 15/524,511

WO 2018/209175


Reference Media

Cai, Z. et al.; Autoimmun Rev 2016 15(7)752.


Desired partnerships

• Collaboration 


Docket #   14-7144 


Download PDF 


Keywords: Life Science, thrombocytopenia, diagnostic, therapeutic, antibody

Patent Information:
For Information, Contact:
Viviane Martin
Director, PSOM Licensing Group
University of Pennsylvania
Mark Greene
Reagents: Antibodies