Protein-protein interactions

Affimer technology offers a powerful set of tools to help in the exploration of protein-protein interactions. Affimer reagents can be developed to bind target proteins with the required affinity and selectivity to disrupt these interactions and provide valuable information regarding structure and function, as well as offering insight into their potential as drug targets.

In creating tools to investigate protein-protein interactions, the high specificity and sensitivity of Affimer reagents can be targeted towards unique protein conformations. This allows the recognition of one member of a family of structurally and functionally similar proteins. Creating opportunities to target a single protein, or a subset of a protein family in this way could introduce greater selectivity to in vivo studies.

Phage ELISA demonstrating Affimer binders specific for the N-terminal SH2 domain of p85α subunit of PI3K
Phage ELISA demonstrating Affimer binders specific for the N-terminal SH2 domain of p85α subunit of PI3K

The small size and lack of any disulphide bonds within the structure of the Affimer reagents make them particularly suited for intracellular expression, to potentially be used as inhibitors or probes in super-resolution microscopy, where the larger size of antibodies limits resolution and thus accurate localisation of any target proteins. 

Tubulin binding Affimers can access the cytokinetic furrow in confocal microscopy
Tubulin binding Affimers can access the cytokinetic furrow in confocal microscopy

The ability to flexibly functionalise Affimer proteins with a variety of tags, fluorophores, enzymes and other proteins and ligands via both chemical conjugation and genetic modification provides a complete toolkit to ensure performance of the selected binder across a variety of platforms and assay types. 
 

Affimer paper published in eLife

This paper reports on the use of Affimer proteins as research reagents. It shows that Affimer proteins represent complementary affinity reagents to antibodies for various molecular and cell biology applications.