Ancillary reagents – antibodies to fusion proteins

We at Novus Biologicals have an extensive antibody catalog of ancillary products to aid your research, including loading control, epitope tag and reporter protein antibodies.

Fusions, or chimeric proteins, are created from the fusion of two or more genes which originally encoded different peptides. The resultant fusion gene encodes a single polypeptide which exhibits properties of the two separate proteins. Chimeric proteins can occur naturally, typically in cancer cells where complex mutations can give rise to oncogenes. Our Bcr antibody targets one such mutation, the BCR-ABL fusion protein, which is thought to be the primary driving force of chronic myelogenous leukemia.

In the lab, fusion proteins are created artificially using recombinant DNA technology. They are of use where there is too little of the protein of interest to raise an antibody or characterize it in assay. The technique involves removing the stop codon from the DNA of the gene of interest, and then fusing this DNA to that of a known protein, such as MBP (Myelin Basic Protein), or to a DNA sequence which codes for an identifiable peptide, such as c-Myc. This recombinant DNA is then introduced into living cells, for example microorganisms, where both the protein of interest and the protein or peptide tag are expressed as one molecule, which is identified by the antibodies raised against the tag. This makes it easy to identify and isolate proteins of interest in a cell lysate or culture supernatant, or in tissues.

The recombinant DNA can be engineered to include full or part sequences of both proteins. Where entire proteins are used, spacer peptides are often included to ensure the resultant molecule behaves as predicted, with full recognition by the tag antibody.

Our antibody database includes a number of popular reporter proteins (i.e. those which are not normally present in the research environment.) These include Luciferase (derived from lightning bugs) and Green Fluorescent Protein (GFP, derived from jelly fish) which is also a widely used fusion tag. GFP antibodies have proven invaluable in gene expression, protein dynamics and protein localization studies.

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