INTRODUCTION: Multiple myeloma (MM) is generally an incurable hematological malignancy with heterogeneous overall survival rates ranging from a few months to more than 10 years. Survival is especially poor for patients who developed disease that is refractory to immunomodulatory drugs and proteasome inhibitors. Areas covered: This review will discuss the importance of CD38-targeting antibodies for the treatment of MM patients to improve their outcome. Expert commentary: Intense immuno-oncological laboratory research has resulted in the development of functionally active monoclonal antibodies against cell surface markers present on MM cells. In this respect, CD38-targeting antibodies such as daratumumab, MOR202, and isatuximab, have high single agent activity in heavily pretreated MM patients by virtue of their pleiotropic mechanisms of action including Fc-dependent effector mechanisms and immunomodulatory activities. Importantly, CD38-targeting antibodies are well tolerated, with infusion reactions as most frequent adverse event. Altogether, this makes them attractive combination partners with other anti-MM agents. Daratumumab is already approved as monotherapy and in combination with lenalidomide-dexamethasone as well as bortezomib-dexamethasone in pretreated MM patients. Furthermore, results from studies evaluating CD38-targeting antibodies in newly diagnosed MM patients are also promising, indicating that CD38-targeting antibodies will be broadly used in MM, resulting in further improvements in survival.