|Title||Antibody repertoire development in camelids.|
|Publication Type||Journal Article|
|Year of Publication||2006|
|Authors||De Genst, E., D. Saerens, S. Muyldermans, and K. Conrath|
|Journal||Dev Comp Immunol|
|Keywords||Animals, B-Lymphocytes, Camelids, New World, Camels, Gene Rearrangement, Immunoglobulin Heavy Chains, Immunoglobulin Light Chains|
The humoral immune response of the Camelidae is unique as these animals are the only known mammals that seem to possess functional homodimeric heavy-chain antibodies besides the classical heteromeric antibodies composed of heavy (H) and light (L) chains. By definition, the heavy-chain antibodies lack the L-chain, and it was noticed that their H-chain is devoid of the typical first constant domain (CH1) and contains a dedicated variable domain, referred to as VHH. The VHH exon is assembled from separate V-D-J gene segments. The recombined VHH region is subjected to somatic hypermutations; however, the timing and actual mechanism of the class switch from mu to the dedicated gamma-isotype remains elusive. Interestingly, antigen-specific VHHs are easily retrieved after panning of a phage-displayed rearranged V-gene pool cloned from an immunised camelid. These single-domain antigen binding entities possess a number of biophysical properties that offer particular advantages in various medical and biotechnological applications.
|Alternate Journal||Dev. Comp. Immunol.|