The adaptive immune system produces antibodies in response to invading infections. Antibodies are proteins that are folded polypeptides or strands of amino acids with antigen recognition sites that recognize a specific antigen binding site. B-cells of the adaptive immune system create them.
These antibodies that recognize the offending virus, bacteria, or other molecules are collectively referred to as antigens.
The specificity of antibody-antigen recognition offers various applications in sensor development and biotechnology. These applications necessitate exceedingly pure antibody supplies. These antibodies are typically attached to sensor surfaces or employed in conjunction with nanoparticles or other labeled detection platforms to detect antigens.
Purified antibodies with antigen specificity are commercially available. These antibodies are classified as polyclonal or monoclonal based on how they are created and extracted. Polyclonal antibodies can recognize numerous epitopes or various locations on an antigen. They are generated from a single B-cell line and identify only one epitope on an antigen.
Antibodies against a specific antigen are often readily available from a provider, or you can get them through custom antibody services. A 90% pure sample of antigen is all that is required to create and harvest a tailored antibody against that antigen. If an antigen sample is unavailable, you can produce new peptides or proteins and develop antibodies against them. Custom antibody production procedures can generate both polyclonal and monoclonal antibodies.
Custom monoclonal antibody production
The customer may supply highly pure protein or peptides. Besides, a custom peptide or protein could potentially be designed and synthesized by the corporation.
After immunizing the animals, their serum is examined for antibody production.
Before their spleens are removed for hybridoma fusion, the animals with the best immunological response to the antigen are further stimulated with the antigen. A hybridoma is a cancer cell line composed of immortal B cells and myeloma cells. These cell lines, with improved lifespan and reproductivity, are screened and saved.
The cell line is closed until it is homogenous and secretes antibodies consistently.
Production and purification
One liter of cell culture yields between 10 and 30 mg of antibody. Significantly, protein A or protein G resin is used for purification.
Custom antibody manufacturing is valuable for developing antibodies against a rare or unique antigen. The procedure, particularly for monoclonal antibody manufacturing, also benefits others in the scientific community. Once a hybridoma cell line is produced to make an antibody, you can preserve that cell line for future use.
Top factors when selecting custom antibody suppliers
Different vendors may specialize in providing antibodies from a specific species or clonality, which may be critical for your project.
While many people do not like to worry about money, selecting your product and source may be necessary. You need to know early on if your preferred seller can deliver a required product at a price that works for you.
Polyclonal antibodies are the cheapest and generally the quickest alternative; however, they may not be appropriate for your research needs. They are typically employed for qualitative detection assays (e.g., western blot) or purification, but their application is broad.
Monoclonals are more expensive, as much more development work on screening and selection is required. While you cannot utilize them for all test types, they are critical for quantitative procedures and assays that require consistent performance across batches.
As with most custom items, almost all vendors want you to contact them directly for pricing because project scope and requirements might vary considerably.
Timelines and techniques
Another key consideration is time for development and production, especially if you are working on a tight deadline. Many suppliers publish timeline information and tactics they utilize to speed up manufacturing on their websites.
Experience is also vital when selecting a vendor. You may prefer a provider with a long track record who can provide many references and examples of custom tasks similar to your request.
Custom antibody suppliers should also be able to advise you on all elements of your project, beginning with antigen selection.
Benefits of monoclonal antibodies
Monoclonal antibodies are created for specialized functions in disease-fighting due to their homogeneity. These can target a specific cell to repress or stimulate certain biological processes.
Monoclonal antibodies, for example, are employed in cancer treatment. Anti-PD1 monoclonal antibodies attack a surface protein called PD-1 (programmed death) on immune cells. Cancer cells attach PD-1 to avoid detection by antibodies, but when antibodies bind PD-1, the cancer cells are vulnerable to death.
Monoclonal antibodies are commonly employed in gold standard procedures, including western blotting, ELISA, flow cytometry, and other affinity-based assays or isolation techniques. A monoclonal antibody aids in the detection of a specific antigen of interest in ELISA.
Besides, monoclonal antibodies can also assist in detecting individual cells in flow cytometry. These can also be used to purify proteins. A monoclonal antibody can bind to a protein, which can subsequently be separated from its solution.
Creating new bespoke antibodies can be complex, time-consuming, and sometimes costly. Besides, multiple aspects influence success, including intended usage, proper immunogen design, vaccination approach, animal model and clonality, optimum screening procedures, effective purification, and dependable QC.
Use a reliable vendor’s experience and expertise to find custom antibody development scientists for your project.