How to Address the Lack of Commercial Antibodies for Model Organisms?

Posted by Vivian creative on October 9th, 2021

Protein is an important biological macromolecule and research object, remaining the backbone in the field of molecular biology. Antibodies are one of the most important protein tools for current research. However, antibodies available commercially at present are mainly intended for protein research from human or relevant mammalian species like rats and mice. Other non-mammalian model organisms, such as rice, Arabidopsis, corn, yeast, fruit flies, nematodes, etc., are left with a dearth of commercial antibody support.

About Model Organisms

Model organisms are widely studied species with obvious experimental advantages, which usually are easy to maintain and breed in a laboratory setting. Ranging from simple single cellular eukaryotes to complicated creatures, model organisms are often used in genetics research, helping understand biological processes, mechanisms of cellular biology, and human diseases.

Model organisms have contributed to studying mechanisms of aging, mitochondrial dynamics, homologous recombination, RNA splicing, etc. But the shortage of commercial non-mammalian model organism antibody products brings researchers inevitable inconvenience, though there are some alternatives available to detect proteins.

Causes for the Deficiency of Commercial Model Antibodies

Evidence indicates that commercial mammalian antibodies currently are sharing a larger marketplace than non-mammalian antibodies. Specifically, the total antibody number of zebrafish, Drosophila, C. elegans and yeast from antibody giants manufacturers can\'t even reach the number of either rat antibodies or mouse antibodies alone.

According to a study talking about the publication trend in model organism research published on the National Library of Medicine, there are some reasons for the lack of commercial antibodies for model organisms. One cause is that less research demand for non-mammalian antibodies than mammalian antibodies. Another cause that can\'t be ignored is the disparity in research funding. A report has concluded the NIH research project grants of murine and non-mammalian model organisms, including zebrafish, Drosophila, Xenopus, C. elegans, yeast, and Arabidopsis, finding that the funding for murine models is twice as much as that of the total number of all 6 non-mammalian model organisms between 2008 and 2015. Such research funding tendency makes sense when it comes to the fact that mammalian model organisms are anticipated to be more translational models for human disease research.

How to Offset the Shortage of the Commercial Model Antibodies?

Here are some solutions to help researchers address the issue of lacking commercial antibodies for non-mammalian model organisms.

One of the most efficient ways is to find a reliable antibody provider. Creative Biolabs, an established biotechnology company, is specialized in developing and production of model biological antibodies for animals, plants, and microorganisms, such as Rhesus antibodies, Zebrafish antibodies, and D. melanogaster antibodies. This is the best way as Creative Biolabs can design and customize antibodies based on different proteins and applications.

Another direction researchers can turn to is sharing antibody serum in communities, especially those whose projects are on very specific cellular systems. But antibodies obtained in this way possibly are limited in quantity and may have issues with specificity for some reason.

Some other alternatives include tagging the protein with a detectable epitope either endogenously through genome integration or exogenously via a plasmid. Also, when lacking commercial antibodies for model organisms, researchers can take advantage of cross-reactivity since several antibodies to non-mammalian model organisms are highly conserved proteins that can also cross-react with their mammalian homologs. But it might be time-consuming to find out what antibodies can cross-react with a given species.

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Vivian creative
Joined: March 15th, 2021
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