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When Karl and Philipp Lang were postdocs in Rolf Zinkernagel’s lab, they had no idea that their research on the immune system’s response to lymphocytic choriomeningitis virus (LCMV) would lead to an anticancer therapeutic, let alone a biotech company. Zinkernagel received the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1996 for the work showing that T cell recognition of viral antigens requires a matched major histocompatibility complex (MHC). A quarter of a century later, the brothers are tailoring knowledge of the LCMV immune response for a more prosaic purpose: in 2019, the Langs' two German institutions — the University of Duisburg-Essen, where Karl is based, and the Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf for Philipp — spun out Abalos-Essen to advance their arenavirus-based cancer virotherapy platform to the clinic with $12 million in a first funding round.