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Use Of Avidin-biotin-peroxidase Complex (ABC) In Immunoperoxidase Techniques: A Comparison Between ABC And Unlabeled Antibody (PAP) Procedures.

S M Hsu, L Raine, H Fanger

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The use of avidin-biotin interaction in immunoenzymatic techniques provides a simple and sensitive method to localize antigens in formalin-fixed tissues. Among the several staining procedures available, the ABC method, which involves an application of biotin-labeled secondary antibody followed by the addition of avidin-biotin-peroxidase complex, gives a superior result when compared to the unlabeled antibody method. The availability of biotin-binding sites in the complex is created by the incubation of a relative excess of avidin with biotin-labeled peroxidase. During formation of the complex, avidin acts as a bridge between biotin-labeled peroxidase molecules; and biotin-labeled peroxidase molecules, which contains several biotin moieties, serve as a link between the avidin molecules. Consequently, a "lattice" complex containing several peroxidase molecules is likely formed. Binding of this complex to the biotin moieties associated with secondary antibody results in a high staining intensity.