The Open Door Web Site
Animal Physiology Index
Defence Against Disease Index
Antibodies are specific in their binding with antigens.
Developing specific antibodies would be useful in fighting particular diseases, diagnosing infections and identifying molecules with antigenic properties wherever they occur.
The response of the immune system to an infection is polyclonal, producing a whole range of antibodies each time we are infected. If it were possible to isolate single antibody secreting cells it would die within a few generations.
To produce specific antibodies requires a monoclonal system that can keep producing antibody for a long period of time.
The method of producing monoclonal antibodies
Problems with monoclonal therapy
Sooner or later the mouse immunoglobulins will be identified by the human immune system of the patient and human anti-mouse antibodies (HAMA) will appear. This reduces their effectiveness and also can cause kidney damage. The solution may be to use transgenic mice that produce human immunoglobulins.
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