a) An antibody fragment against a human tumour (made by phage display technology) has been radioactively labelled and used to detect cancer in the liver of a patient.
b) A CT scan of the same patient with a lobe of liver on the left.
| ||Monoclonal (belonging to a single clone) antibodies (mAbs for short) are antibodies of just one sort which recognise and can seek out one particular antigen. They are pure and highly specific and lend themselves to many diagnostic, therapeutic and research uses (see Figure 5). In the twenty five years since their development at the MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology in Cambridge, mAbs have transformed biological research and created an international multi-million pound business.|
| ||During an immune response, a mixture of small amounts of many different antibodies is produced. Purifying a single antibody from this polyclonal mixture is difficult, if not impossible. In 1975, Kb hler and Milstein devised a method of making large amounts of mAbs - for this they won a Nobel Prize in 1984. Their method is shown in Figure 8. It uses B cells from a mouse which has been injected with a specific antigen.|