Since chickens are at least 100 million years removed from mammals, they tend to recognize any mammalian gene product as foreign and mount vigorous immune responses.
Chicken IgYs can be used together with mouse and rabbit antibodies, without the danger of cross-reactivity. Secondary antibodies against chicken IgYs don’t cross-react with mammalian IgGs.
We purify the antibodies from eggs, not serum. With rabbits, in contrast, serum is obtained by restraining the animals, and performing ear bleeds or cardiac puncture. It is simply a more humane way to produce antibodies.
Our chicken antibody preparations are >90% IgY, and have shelf-lives of 5 years or more at 4ËÂÃÅ¡C. In contrast, rabbit serum (which is what most companies provide) has only a limited shelf-life at 4ËÂÃÅ¡C (measured in weeks-to-months), and some biological activity is lost when frozen. The cost of having rabbit antibodies purified to comparable purities (i.e., protein A-purified) is very costly.
We collect about 18 "immune eggs" from each hen, but only use 6 "immune eggs" to prepare your IgY preparation. We then store the remaining 12 "immune eggs" in the refrigerator, in case you need more antibody down the road. Moreover, we can continue to house the hens (for an additional charge), in case you want us to perform additional injections. <?p>
This provides several advantages over rabbit IgGs:
Chicken IgYs contain a larger glycosylation index, allowing more labeling with HRP and other antibody tags. This produces higher signals.