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Using mouse primary antibodies on mouse tissues
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Using mouse primary antibodies on mouse tissues


Using a mouse monoclonal on sections of mouse tissue often makes a strong background staining because the secondary antiserum binds to mouse immunoglobulin already present in the tissue. Is there a way to get round this difficulty?

Answer(s) 1.

Two published methods seem quite good for this purpose. They are very briefly summarized below. For practical details consult the original papers:

Hierck,BP; Iperen,LV; Gittenberger-de Groot,AC; Poelmann,RE (1994): Modified indirect immunodetection allows study of murine tissue with mouse monoclonal antibodies. J. Histochem. Cytochem. 42(11, Nov), 1499-1502.

Mouse monoclonal reacted with HRP-rabbit anti-(mouse serum); then add excess normal mouse serum & incubate with tissue.

Lu,QL; Partridge,TA (1998): A new blocking method for application of murine monoclonal antibody to mouse tissue sections. J. Histochem. Cytochem. 46, 977-983.

Blocking with mixture of Fab and Fc fragments from rabbit anti-mouse antibody. (Made by papain digestion, then more Fc added). Stops background staining of endogenous mouse IgG by the secondary antiserum.

Corazon D. Bucana, Ph.D.
Houston, Texas
John A. Kiernan
London, Canada

Answer 2.

[This answer does not really explain what to do, but the advertised product might interest users of mouse monoclonals.]

DAKO just released an immunostaining system for animal tissues. In particular, it excels with mouse antibodies on mouse tissue. We engage a novel technology to ensure clean background and high specificity. Stoichiometric amounts of primary-antibody complex are preformed before it is exposed to the tissue site. This eliminates the unwanted reaction between secondary antibody and mouse tissue.

Please visit the DAKO Corporation website ( to request literature on the new DAKO ARK (Animal Research Kit). We presented a poster at the IAP meeting in Boston and this document is available by mail.

A few highlights: 1. One kit for all animal IHC testing utilizing mouse monoclonal primary Abs. 2. Use on tissue from any animal species. 3. Unique process eliminates background staining. 4. Staining results in 45 minutes. 5. Automatable

For more information please contact DAKO Technical Services at techserv[AT] or call 800-424-0021.

Bret Cook
Product Specialist, DAKO Corporation

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