• Recombinant Protein
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  • 1. What are recombinant proteins?
     

    Recombinant proteins are encoded by a gene — recombinant DNA — that has been cloned into a system that supports expression of the gene and subsequently the protein of interest which is typically the target molecule.

  • 2. What is recombinant DNA?
     

    Recombinant DNA is a genetically-engineered DNA molecule formed by splicing fragments of DNA and then introduced into the recipient (host) cell.

  • 3. How are recombinant proteins produced?
     

    Protein production is the biotechnological process of generating a specific protein through expression via a living host cell. It is typically achieved by the manipulation of gene expression in an organism such that it expresses large amounts of a recombinant proteins. This includes the transcription of the recombinant DNA to messenger RNA (mRNA), the translation of mRNA into polypeptide chains, which are ultimately folded into functional proteins and may be targeted to specific subcellular or extracellular locations.

  • 4. What are the recombinant proteins used for?
     

    Recombinant proteins have wide applications in medicine, research, biotechnology and agriculture.  The biologics industry typically uses recombinant proteins as therapeutics, vaccines and diagnostics.

  • 5. What are therapeutic recombinant proteins?
     

    Therapeutic recombinant proteins provide important therapies for a variety of diseases, such as diabetes, cancer, infectious diseases, hemophilia, and anemia. Common therapeutic proteins include antibodies, FC fusion proteins, hormones, interleukins, enzymes, and anticoagulants. Currently, most of all therapeutic recombinant proteins are produced in either mammalian or microbial hosts.  In some cases, there is preference towards producing the recombinant proteins in mammalian cells because of similarities to the naturally occurring molecules that are recognized by the human immune system. In addition, many approved recombinant proteins are generated in Escherichia coli due to its well-characterized genetics, rapid growth, and high-yield production.

     Basically, therapeutic recombinant proteins can be classified into four groups:

    • Group I: Therapeutic proteins with enzymatic or regulatory activity. These proteins replace a protein that is deficient or abnormal, up-regulate an existing pathway, or provide a new function or activity.
    • Group II: Therapeutic proteins with special targeting activity. These proteins interfere with a molecule or organism or deliver other molecules.
    • Group III: Therapeutic proteins as vaccines. These proteins help protect against foreign agents, autoimmune diseases, and cancer.
    • Group IV: Therapeutic proteins as diagnostics. These proteins are generally purified and recombinant proteins.