Biological perspectives. Antimethamphetamine antibodies: a new concept for treating methamphetamine users.
Methamphetamine and ecstasy are addictive drugs that cause major health problems in young people. Here we report on the development of high-affinity monoclonal antibodies to methamphetamine and its analogues, which may constitute powerful tools for antibody-based therapy. Six haptens, methamphetamine and ecstasy analogues, were synthesized, linked to a carrier protein and injected into mice. Several specific monoclonal antibodies were subsequently obtained following fusion of splenocytes from the immunized animals, with Sp2/O cells. Antibody specificity was fully investigated by competition ELISA, using a series of analogues, to identify specific amphetamine and/or ecstasy-specific antibodies. Antibody affinity was estimated to be in the range of 10(8) M(-1) with an enantiomeric hapten. Finally, two characteristic hybridoma clones (DAS-M243-6H5 and DAS-M278-4B12), secreting specific and potent mAbs were isolated. The development of drug-specific antibodies as in this study may provide promising therapeutic insight into how to neutralize methamphetamine in vivo during acute intoxication.