Production of Antibodies in Chickens

Mojca Narat

Department of Animal Science, Biotechnical Faculty, University of Ljubljana, Groblje 3, SI-1230 Domžale, Slovenia

Article history:

Received: March 13, 2003
Accepted: June 9, 2003

Key words:

antibodies, chicken egg yolk, chicken IgY, monoclonal antibodies, recombinant antibodies, phage display, antibody library, transgenic chickens, immunoglobulin transport


Chickens, as a source of desired antibodies, represent an alternate animal system that offers some advantages with respect to animal care, high productivity and special suitability of avian antibodies for certain diagnostic purposes. Despite being an excellent counterpart to mammal IgG chicken IgY antibodies still represent an underused resource. This may be due to the lack of information concerning the possibility of production and application of IgY or their use is being hampered by problems with keeping the chickens and with IgY isolation. As a suggestion how to overcome IgY isolation problems a new immunoaffinity isolation method is presented here. The main purpose of the present work is to provide information on developments and possibilities in the production of chicken IgY. Polyclonal, monoclonal and recombinant forms of IgY, successfully produced so far, as well as their applications are summarised. This article should be a contribution to the efforts of the European Centre for the Validation of Alternative Methods (ECVAM), whose main goal is to promote the scientific and regulatory acceptance of alternative methods, which are of importance to the bioscience and which reduce, refine or replace the use of laboratory animals. 

*Corresponding author: 
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