Antibodies - extremely powerful tools in biomedical research - are large complex molecules (150 kDa) consisting of two heavy and two light chains. Due to their complex structure the use of antibodies is often limited.
Camelidae (camels, dromedaries, llamas and alpacas) produce functional antibodies devoid of light chains, so called heavy chain antibodies (hcAbs). hcAbs recognize and bind their antigens via a single variable domain (VHH). These VHH domains are the smallest intact antigen binding fragments (molecular weight: 13 kDa), characterized by excellent stability, high specificity and affinities in the low nanomolar range.
DNA methylation is a crucial part of normal organismal development and cellular differentiation in higher organisms. DNA methylation stably alters the gene expression pattern in cells such that cells can