Antibody Fragmentation

Backed by decades of experience generating Fc, Fab, and F(ab’)2 fragments, Rockland’s antibody fragmentation service team can optimize and, if needed, scale up antibody fragmentation to achieve your desired goals.

Our service includes antibody dialysis, digestion with pepsin or papain, and purification of the proteolytic fragments with typical projects starting with up to 100 mg of an IgG antibody. We also routinely perform larger scale digests and can customize a service for your needs and final application.

Producing Fab, Fc, and F(ab')2

Our antibody fragmentation services team uses enzymatic digestion to fragment IgG antibodies. We use pepsin to produce F(ab’)2 fragments and papain to produce Fab and Fc fragments.

The F(ab’)2 fragment preserves part of the antibody’s hinge region, keeping the two Fab domains covalently linked. Thus, F(ab')2 fragments are divalent with two antigen-binding Fab domains. The F(ab’)2 molecular weight is approximately 110 kDa.

Digestion of an IgG with papain produces three products: one Fc fragment and two identical Fab fragments. The Fab fragment is a 50 kDa disulfide bonded antibody fragment that retains its antigen binding activity but lacks the Fc portion of the IgG. The Fc fragment is composed of parts of two heavy chains. It has no antigen-binding ability, but does contribute to a number of effector functions.

Optimization of Enzymatic Digestions

Because every antibody responds differently to digestion, your antibody fragmentation service project may need an additional step to determine the optimal conditions for enzymatic fragmentation. Contact us to learn more about our antibody optimization services.