Targeting Anti-CELA1 Antibodies Shows Potential for Treating COPD, AAT Deficient Emphysema

Post Date: January 14, 2022

One of the top causes of death in the United States and worldwide, COPD is an incurable lung condition that makes breathing difficult for the 16 million Americans who have this disease.

This animation shows the role that anti-Cela1 antibodies may play in slowing emphysema’s progression in COPD. Cincinnati Children’s researcher Brian Varisco, MD, Division of Critical Care Medicine, continues to collect efficacy data for these antibodies.


AAT deficiency is the leading genetic cause of emphysema1 and the third most common reason for needing a lung transplant.

Protein replacement therapy only modestly slows progression of this rare disease.

However, research by Varisco and colleagues at Cincinnati Children’s indicates that the anti-CELA-1 KF4 antibody can more effectively prevent emphysema progression than protein replacement in AAT-deficient emphysema.

The following video summarizes these findings.

For more information about new technologies being developed at Cincinnati Children’s, please visit


Credits: Media Lab at Cincinnati Children’s (@CincyKidsMedArt)

Animation: Jeff Cimprich, Matt Nelson, and Julia Bendon

Media Lab Direction: Ken Tegtmeyer, MD (@pccm_doc) and Ryan Moore, MD (@ramooremd)

Content Experts: Brian Varisco, MD (@BrianVarisco) and Eileen Yeoh (@CincyKidsInvent)

Voice Over: Carla Johnson