Antigen-antibody microarrays

Improved methods to analyze complex networks of soluble cellular enzymes and receptors are central to modern biotechnology.  Here too, however, present day proteomic microarrays have only marginal utility.  In order for binding reactions to be detected, the analytes must be artificially labeled.  This greatly restricts the flexibility and utility of the microarray, and little data of value has ever been obtained by such methods.

 Molecular Pathways' proteomic microarrays (patent pending) (text) can function with unlabeled analytes.  As a result, samples can be directly applied to the microarray surface quickly and with minimal processing.  This enables complete biochemical pathways to be rapidly analyzed at a level of detail that was not previously possible.

The "tethered antigen" concept:

An antibody labeled with a first fluorescent dye is tethered to a reagent antigen labeled with a second fluorescent dye.  The antibody is also tethered to a microarray surface. 

When excess test antigens (not shown) are not present, the reagent antigen and antibody bind.  Fluorescence resonance transfer between dye 1 and 2 detects this binding.  However if excess test antigen is present, this disrupts the binding between the reagent antigen and the antibody.  This reduces the resonance transfer signal. 

Note that this reagent is reusable -- the microarray surface can be flushed with buffer and the assay repeated.

A PowerPoint presentation with animated graphics, illustrating the concept, can be downloaded here.

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