Anticalin® proteins are artifical proteins derived from human lipocalins. They have a diversifiable amino acid sequence that results in four loops. These loops assemble into a cup like structure that can bind both smaller and larger molecules.
Anticalin proteins can be used in a similar fashion to monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) but they are not structurally related and much smaller with a molecular mass around 25 kDa and a size of about 180 amino acids. Since they are smaller than mAbs they may be delivered via non-injectable routes such as inhalation via the lung.
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