Enhanced validation offers increased security of antibody specificity in a defined context. This is ensured by using the most relevant validation method for each combination of protein, sample, and application.
At Atlas Antibodies, we take great care to validate our antibodies in IHC, WB, and ICC-IF. Enhanced Validation is performed as an additional layer of security in an application and context-specific manner. Enhanced Validation follows the guidelines proposed by the International Working Group for Antibody Validation (IWGAV) and published in Nature Methods. By having all five methods recommended by IWGAV at our disposal, we have the power to validate a wide range of different antibodies.
The Five Methods of Enhanced Validation
In this enhanced validation method, antibody specificity is confirmed by downregulating the target protein on a genetic level using siRNA or CRISPR-Cas9.
Antibody specificity is confirmed when knockout or knockdown of the corresponding gene correlates with absence or decrease of the antibody signal.
Genetic validation using siRNA knockdown is a method used at Atlas Antibodies to validate antibodies in Western blot. The method can also be applied for antibody validation in ICC-IF.
In this enhanced validation method, the antibody is validated by comparing the results with a non-antibody based method across multiple samples.
One orthogonal approach is to compare antibody staining intensities to RNA-Seq data from the same samples, over multiple tissues or cells with varying expression of the target protein. Antibody specificity is confirmed when the antibody signal matches RNA levels in the evaluated samples.
For each antibody, two tissues or endogenous cell lines are chosen for the validation, one with high RNA expression and the other with low or no RNA expression of the target.
Enhanced validation by comparing the antibody signal to RNA-Seq data is used at Atlas Antibodies to validate antibodies in WB and IHC. The method can also be applied for ICC-IF.
Orthogonal Validation in IHC
Dig deeper - learn how our unique orthogonal validation is applied in IHC.
Validation by Independent Antibodies
In this enhanced validation method, antibody specificity is demonstrated by comparing two antibodies targeting different regions of the same protein.
If the two antibodies generate a similar staining pattern when compared in a set of relevant tissues, the antibodies validate each other.
Independent antibody validation can be applied in IHC, WB and ICC-IF setups. The approach requires:
- Exact knowledge of the antigen sequence for each antibody.
- At least two antibodies with non-overlapping antigen sequences for each protein target.
Recombinant Expression Validation
In this enhanced validation method, the antibody binding is verified using and over-expressed or tagged version of the target protein.
When over-expressing the target protein in a cell line, the antibody is validated by comparing the signal from the over-expressed version with the unmodified endogenous target protein. This approach can be applied in WB.
Alternatively, the target protein is tagged by an affinity tag or a fluorescent protein. The pattern displayed by the tagged target protein is matched to the antibody signal. A match confirms that the antibody is recognizing its target protein. Validation by tagged proteins can be applied in ICC-IF.
Migration Capture MS Validation
In this enhanced validation method, the staining pattern and the protein size detected by the antibody is compared with results obtained by a capture Mass Spectrometry (MS) method.
Antibody specificity is confirmed when the size detected by the antibody is equivalent to the size of the corresponding target protein detected in migration capture MS.
Validation by Migration Capture MS will be introduced for selected antibodies.
Download our white paper about Enhanced Validation to learn more.