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Antibodies, synthetic antibodies, drug research and therapeutics08 Jun 2015
Antibodies have been powerful tools for biological research for some time. An ELISA assay is the staple of many studies such as antibody titre, virus tests, pregnancy tests and allergen detection. This diversity of applications relies on the specificity of different antibodies produced for different applications. The specific nature of antibodies also makes them ideal for Fluorescence Polarization studies as well the HTRF assay from Cisbio.
New types of antibodies are becoming available that are allowing new techniques to be developed and increasingly seeing their use not only in pharmacological research, but also in potential for cancer treatment. Bi-specific antibodies can be engineered to bring together cancerous cell and the body’s own immune cells, recruiting the immune system into the treatment, and have shown potential in other fields (J. Am. Chem. Soc., 2015, 137 (16), pp 5288–5291. DOI: 10.1021/jacs.5b01876).

Further developments in protein production have led to the production of synthetic antibodies. These have the multi-specific regions that are part of antibody function, but possess other properties that can be harnessed. For example, they can be small – this raises the possibility of engineering orally administrable medicines that behave as bi-specific antibodies in the cell (J. Am. Chem. Soc., 2014, 136 (52), pp 18034–18043. DOI: 10.1021/ja509513c).



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