Background: Antibody phage display is a major technological platform for the
generation of fully human antibodies for therapeutic purposes. The in vitro binder selection
by phage display allows researchers to have more extensive control over binding parameters
and facilitates the isolation of clinical candidate antibodies with desired binding and/or functional
Methods: Since the invention of antibody phage display in late 1980s, significant technological
advancements in the design, construction, and selection of the antibody libraries have
been made, and several fully human antibodies generated by phage display are currently
approved or in various clinical development stages.
Results: In this review, the background and details of antibody phage display technology,
and representative antibody libraries with natural or synthetic sequence diversity and different
construction strategies are described. The generation, optimization, functional and biophysical properties, and
preclinical and clinical developments of some of the phage display-derived therapeutic antibodies approved for
use in patients or in late-stage clinical trials are also discussed.
Conclusion: With evolving novel disease targets and therapeutic strategies, antibody phage display is expected to
continue to play a central role in the development of the next generation of therapeutic antibodies.