Over the last 20 years, monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) against several thousand proteins have become commercially available. When considering the number of proteins predicted in the human and other genomes, this number is still far from meeting the current demand to perform comprehensive proteome analyses of biological systems and it therefore represents a bottleneck to further development of proteome research. In view of general needs in the area of biomedical research, a high throughput development and production of mAbs is considered one of the most promising approaches to build up a research and biotechnology unit.
This was a strong argument for the establishment of the Centre for Monoclonal Antibody Production at the University of Rijeka (CAPRI). Given the already made investment into infrastructure and basic equipment by the University, the proposed SSA project will be used for upgrading the capabilities of CAPRI in order to enable it to run a high-throughput production of mAbs and increasing its networking activity with potential mAbs users - research teams from universities and public research institutes, but also from the private sector. By having a large collection of specific mAbs, CAPRI can be a driving force for the development of small enterprises.
The immediate goal of the project is to enable the CAPRI staff to generate mAbs against all proteins of several relevant human viruses, starting from mAbs against the entire proteome of the Variccela Zoster Virus (VZV). By making these mAbs available to research groups and companies from Croatia and from the region, the project will not only be beneficial for upgrading the scientific competence of Croatian bioscience, but it should also contribute to strengthening the scientific and technological cooperation within the region and improving its competitiveness for participating in the EU Framework Programmes (especially in the thematic priority "Life Sciences, Genomics and Biotechnology for Health").
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