Shark Derived Single-Domain Antibody Generation

Date:Jan 03, 2023    |  【 A  A  A 】

(Text by BI Yunchen, 

Yunchen was operating shark experiment. Credit: Institute of Oceanology, Chinese Academy of Sciences

Every week I go to the seafood market to purchase fish, shrimp and squid, not for my family, but for the lab's dozens of sharks as their next week's food. These sharks are not fierce like great white shark, but some docile guys, Chiloscyllium plagiosum, commonly known as whitespotted bamboo shark. We work with them to generate a special antibody called single domain antibody. Once faced with antigens, shark could produce heavy-chain-only antibody, which only found naturally in cartilaginous fishes and camelids.  

Benefited from the biotech development, the variable domain of heavy-chain-only antibody could be characterized and expressed independently as single domain antibody. Even only about one tenth size of the traditional antibody, it possesses similar binding affinity and better stability, solubility and tissue permeability, that make it employed in the field of disease diagnosis and pharmaceutical.  

With my research background in the field of structure and function relationship of membrane protein, my lab focuses on the shark derived single domain antibodies against membrane proteins, which are the potential drug targets. So far, only one camelids-derived single domain antibody drug has been approved by authorities, we expect the shark derived antibody could benefit us in the future as a gift from the sea. 

(Editor: ZHANG Yiyi)

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