Antibodies, also known as immunoglobulins (Igs), target and bind specific molecules, or antigens, via a unique lock-and-key mechanism. Scientists now use antibodies extensively to identify, quantify, and characterize proteins in the laboratory. Researchers can quantify highly specific antigen-antibody interactions by detecting signals emitted from antibodies directly bound to an antigen or by using secondary antibodies carrying fluorescent or colorimetric labels.
However, while each antibody binds one specific epitope, an epitope may be present in multiple proteins, especially if the proteins are similar in sequence. Because nonspecific antibodies can lead to incorrect conclusions, antibody validation is important for ensuring the accuracy of every antibody-based experimental protocol.
Download this original eBook from The Scientist's Creative Services Division and OriGene to learn more about:
- Antibody specificity
- The importance of antibody validation
- How to validate an antibody
- What to consider when using an antibody