Targeted therapy is a new type of cancer treatment that uses drugs or other substances to identify and attack cancer cells, usually while doing little damage to normal cells. Cancer treatments that “target” cancer cells may offer the advantage of reduced treatment-related side effects and improved outcomes.
There are 2 main types of targeted therapy drugs*:
Antibody drugs are man-made versions of immune system proteins (called antibodies) that have been designed to attack certain targets on cancer cells. (The body normally makes antibodies to fight harmful invaders like germs.)
Small-molecule drugs are not antibodies. Since antibodies are large molecules, this other type of drug is called a “small-molecule” targeted therapy drug.
(*Source: American Cancer Society)