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J Immunol Methods. 1998 Jul 1;216(1-2):165-81.

Antibody engineering: comparison of bacterial, yeast, insect and mammalian expression systems.

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Department of Immunology, Division of Medicine, Imperial College School of Medicine, Hammersmith Hospital, London, UK.


Engineered antibody molecules, and their fragments, are being increasingly exploited as scientific and clinical tools. However, one factor that can limit the applicability of this technology is the ability to express large amounts of active protein. In this review we describe the relative advantages and disadvantages of bacterial, yeast, insect and mammalian expression systems, and discuss some of the problems that can be encountered when using them. There is no 'universal' expression system, that can guarantee high yields of recombinant product, as every antibody-based molecule will pose its own problems in terms of expression. As a result the choice of system will depend on many factors, including the molecular species being expressed, the precise sequence of the individual antibody and the preferences of the individual investigator. However, there are general rules with regards to the design of expression vectors and systems which will help the investigator to make informed choices as to which strategy might be appropriate for their application.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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