As an alternative to the standard chemical methods for antibody conjugate preparation, Molecular Probes of Eugene, Ore., recently introduced its Zenon™ technology for direct labeling of primary antibodies. Instead of using covalent modification, Zenon technology relies on immune complexes to create antibody conjugates. The first Zenon product line, Zenon One, provides a variety of reagent kits for labeling mouse IgG1 isotype antibodies with a particular detection label.

Zenon technology depends on the modular nature of antibody molecules. The reagents are labeling molecules—dyes, haptens, or enzymes—conjugated to protein fragments that contain the antigen-binding variable domain from goat-antimouse IgG1 antibodies. These fragments—called Fab fragments—recognize the target antibody's constant region (Fc). Users mix the Zenon reagent for five minutes with the primary antibody to be labeled. Once the excess reagent is removed by a five-minute incubation with nonspecific mouse IgG1, the immune complexes are ready for use in immunoassays....

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