An on-bacterium flow cytometric immunoassay for protein quantification

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Abstract

The polystyrene bead-based flow cytometric immunoassay has been widely reported. However, the preparation of functional polystyrene bead is still inconvenient. This study describes a simple and easy on-bacterium flow cytometric immunoassay for protein quantification, in which Staphylococcus aureus (SAC) is used as an antibody–antigen carrier to replace the polystyrene bead. The SAC beads were prepared by carboxyfluorescein diacetate succinimidyl ester (CFSE) labeling, paraformaldehyde fixation and antibody binding. Carcinoembryonic antigen (CEA) and cytokeratin-19 fragment (CYFRA 21-1) proteins were used as models in the test system. Using prepared SAC beads, biotinylated proteins, and streptavidin–phycoerythrin (SA–PE), the on-bacterium flow cytometric immunoassay was validated by quantifying CEA and CYFRA 21-1 in sample. Obtained data demonstrated a concordant result between the logarithm of the protein concentration and the logarithm of the PE mean fluorescence intensity (MFI). The limit of detection (LOD) in this immunoassay was at least 0.25 ng/ml. Precision and accuracy assessments appeared that either the relative standard deviation (R.S.D.) or the relative error (R.E.) was <10%. The comparison between this immunoassay and a polystyrene bead-based flow cytometric immunoassay showed a correlation coefficient of 0.998 for serum CEA or 0.996 for serum CYFRA 21-1. In conclusion, the on-bacterium flow cytometric immunoassay may be of use in the quantification of serum protein.

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