17.06.2021 duration: 2 min

How are recombinant antibodies made?

Recombinant antibody production relies on a process called antibody expression. The recombinant antibodies have to be produced in expression systems developed from rather more advanced cell lines.

In this article, you will learn how recombinant antibodies are made. The process of recombinant antibody expression is explained in a clear step-by-step overview.

This is how recombinant antibodies are made

Therapeutic antibodies are highly complex proteins. Therefore, they can not be produced reliably in simple bacteria or yeast cells. They have to be produced in cell lines.

Once developed and optimized, the antibody genes are inserted into the host cell, typically Chinese hamster ovary cells (CHO cells)in a process called transfection. This step involves opening the cell membrane to allow passage of the antibody genes.

Subsequently, the cells are grown in cell culture medium that supplies them with the necessary nutrients. The host cells in turn execute the program supplied in the inserted genes and express the desired antibody proteins.

At appropriate time intervals, recombinant antibodies are harvested from the cell culture medium. The antibody containing extracts are subjected to several downstream processing steps to purify and concentrate the desired Abs, while removing impurities like salts and undesirable protein fractions. The end product is a pure antibody.

Are animals needed to make recombinant antibodies?

One method for producing large numbers of identical antibodies is the so-called hybridoma technology, which starts by injecting a mouse with an antigen to provoke an immune response.

In recombinant antibody production, no animals are needed. No mice or hamsters are used in the recombinant antibody production! It does not require any animals in the production process: cell lines cultured in a lab are used as the base material. 

Who can make recombinant antibodies?

Specialists in recombinant antibody production offer the necessary capacities and know-how for a fast and qualitative expression of antibodies. Therefore, many companies outsource their production to such a specialist.

To make a monoclonal antibody, researchers first have to identify the right antigen to attack. Some important determining factors for functional antibodies – be it recombinant or other bispecific antibodies – include:

  • effector functions
  • immune response 
  • long term efficacy

In terms of cancer treatment, the process requires the isolation and characterization of human recombinant antibodies directed against the respective tumor cell. Recombinant antibodies have become the favored type, as they are easier and faster to produce than other types of monoclonal antibodies.

Interested in recombinant antibodies?

    Recombinant antibody production service by evitria

    evitria stands for recombinant antibody expression in CHO cells. Since we have already completed more than 6.500 successful projects with our clients and expressed more than 11.000 antibodies in cho cells we can offer antibody production service in maximum quality.

    You are searching for a specialist in recombinant antibody production? We offer customized recombinant antibodies and afucosylated antibodies for ADCC enhancement in highest quality standards and in a minimum of time.

    Previous article What are recombinant antibodies used for?
    Next article Quality factor in recombinant antibody production

      Subscribe to the evitria newsletter and stay up to date