Antibodies are host proteins that are produced by the immune system in response to foreign molecules that enter the body. These foreign molecules are called antigens, and their molecular recognition by the immune system results in selective production of antibodies that are able to bind the specific antigen.
Antibodies are produced by B lymphocytes and circulate in the blood and lymph, where they bind to their specific antigens, removing them from the circulation. You can also check out the Boster Bio featured products to know more about antibodies production.
The ability of the animal immune system to produce antibodies that can specifically bind to antigens can be used to construct probes to detect molecules of interest in a variety of research and diagnostic applications.
Of course, no other modern technology has allowed researchers to develop and manufacture such highly specific molecular recognition tools. Several important properties, in addition to their high specificity, make antibodies very useful for development as probes.
For example, in addition to the moieties that determine antigen binding, antibodies share a relatively uniform and well-characterized protein structure that allows them to be purified, labeled and detected by predictable and reproducible general procedures.
Methods for generating, purifying, and modifying antibodies for use as antigen-specific probes were developed in the 1970s and 1980s.