Protein is a vital component in a living organism. These molecules are made of amino acids as the major components. Protein performs significant roles in an organism, mainly biological functions such as regulation, motion, transport, support, defense, and enzyme catalysis. As such, they can be categorized into various groups depending on their functions.
Due to their vital role, proteins have attracted an intensive scientific study to determine their components and specific functions. Additionally, scientists have developed various ways to express proteins for further research.
The following article will examine one such protein expression way called recombinant protein.
What is Recombinant Protein?
Recombinant proteins are proteins produced through the manipulation of genes. They are expressed using specific expressing systems, such as insect, mammalian, and bacteria expression systems.
The recombinant protein can be produced easily in large quantities compared to the natural protein.
Recombinant Protein Expression
Recombinant protein is expressed using systematic but straightforward steps. The protein expression technique involves translating the specific cells with DNA cells. The cells are then analyzed and broken to produce the required protein, which is later purified.
In other words, the process involves taking a DNA code and creating an RNA copy of it.
The expression system used in recombinant protein synthesis includes eukaryotic and prokaryotic systems. The system depends on the type of protein required, its functions, and the amount of protein needed. A professional recombinant protein expression provider considers these factors to offer high-quality recombinant proteins that are well-tested in the laboratory and have gone through third-party testing.
Recombinant protein expression takes the following basic steps:
- Selection of expression system (bacteria host, yeast, insect cell, and mammalian cell systems)
- Amplification of required genes
- Translation into a cloning vector
- Sub-cloning into an expression vector
- Transformation of gene vectors into protein-expressing host
- Testing and identification of produced recombinant protein
- Fermentation of collected protein
- Purification of the collected recombinant protein.
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Here are Applications of Recombinant Protein
Used In Medicine
Almost all human diseases are directly or indirectly related to the dysfunction of a certain protein. Proteins are essential in providing significant therapies for various diseases, including cancer, infectious diseases, diabetes, hemophilia, and anemia. Examples of therapeutic proteins include hormones, antibodies, FC fusion proteins, enzymes, and anticoagulants.
Recombinant proteins are increasingly applied for therapeutic purposes. Human proteins expressed through genetic translation and engineering play a significant role in the production of therapeutic medicine.
Besides, mammalian cells are preferred in producing recombinant therapeutic proteins as they produce high-quality proteins with similar features and components to naturally occurring proteins. Additionally, most recombinant therapeutic proteins are expressed using the E.coli host due to its rapid growth, well-characterized genetics, and high-yield production.
Recombinant protein produces potent medicines that take a shorter time to develop and are safe with little or no side effects.
Recombinant proteins help to study the structure, functions, and fundamental principles of protein. Additionally, they can be used to identify and locate the position of proteins in a gene and how other foreign substances can interfere with how protein function. Recombinant proteins can also be used to study the role of protein in various cellular and metabolic processes, such as growth, replication and death, protein modification, translation, and transcription. For these reasons, recombinant proteins are applied in cell biology, molecular biology, biophysical, structural, biochemistry studies, and other relevant research areas.
In addition, recombinant proteins are also helpful in understanding and determining how proteins interact with themselves. They have been effective and valuable in laboratory techniques such as western Blot, ELISA test, and immunohistochemistry. Scientists also use them for developing enzymatic assays.
Furthermore, recombinant proteins are vital in studying essential biological processes, including enzymes, growth factors, kinases, and cytokines research.
Recombinant proteins are also used in various sectors, including agriculture, food production, industries, and bioengineering. For example, in agriculture, especially livestock keeping, recombinant proteins are added to animal feeds to improve the nutritional value of the feed, supporting animal gut health, improving animal performance and production, and decreasing feed and waste management costs.
Additionally, the lactic acid bacteria industry, which specializes in producing fermented food, has recently adopted recombinant protein in the fermentation process. This application will increase the use of recombinant proteins, such as bettering animal/human digestion and nutrition.
Other common uses of recombinant proteins include the production of pharmaceutical products, protein-based polymers for antibodies, drug delivery, enzyme synthesis, and the synthesis of protein scaffolds for tissue engineering.
Recombinant protein plays a significant role in various sectors and biological processes. The method used to express recombinant protein will always affect the yield, gene characteristics, and how the protein can be used. Therefore, it’s good to keep in mind the use and function of the recombinant protein before you start expressing it.