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24, chemin de Borde Rouge -Auzeville - CS52627 31326 Castanet Tolosan cedex - France

Last update: May 2021

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Human Nutrition Unit

Zone de texte éditable et éditée et rééditée


Surface Plasmon Resonance to analyze molecular interactions

Analysis of a wide range of molecular interactions :

  •  Proteins
  •  Nucleic acids
  •  Lipids & membrane-associated molecules
  •  Carbohydrates
  •  LMW compounds 
  •  Cells/ viruses/ bacteria

Common types of Biacore analyses :

  •  Interaction: Yes / No ?
  •  Characterization of interaction: Affinity and kinetic parameters
  •  Identification of binding partners/ screening (protein, drug…)
  •  …

How does it work ?

SPR based instruments use an optical method to measure the refractive index near a sensor surface. In the Biacore this surface forms the floor of a small flow cell through which an aqueous solution (the running buffer) passes under continuous flow.

To detect an interaction one molecule (the ligand) is immobilized onto the sensor surface. Its binding partner (the analyte) is injected in aqueous solution through the flow cell, also under continuous flow. As the analyte binds to the ligand the accumulation of proteins on the surface results in an increase in the refractive index. This change in refractive index is measured in real time and the results are plotted as response units or resonance units (RU) versus time (a sensorgram).

The period during which analyte is being injected is termed the “association phase” whereas the period following the end of injection is termed the “dissociation phase”. By analyzing these phases of association/dissociation you can determine the affinity of an interaction, the kinetics parameters of this interaction (on-rate and off-rate), its specificity, the number of binding sites…

Contact : Cécile POLGE