A simple method for labeling proteins and antibodies with biotin using the proximity biotinylation enzyme TurboID

Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2022 Feb 12:592:54-59. doi: 10.1016/j.bbrc.2021.12.109. Epub 2021 Dec 30.


Proteins and antibodies labeled with biotin have been widely used for protein analysis, enzyme immunoassays, and diagnoses. Presently, they are prepared using either a chemical reaction involving a biotin N-hydroxysuccinimide (NHS) ester compound or by enzymatic biotin ligation using a combination of a biotinylation-peptide tag and Escherichia coli BirA. However, these methods are relatively complicated. Recently BirA was improved to TurboID, a highly active enzyme for proximity labeling with biotin. Here, we demonstrate a novel simple biotin labeling method for proteins and antibodies using TurboID. Purified TurboID was mixed with a protein or an antibody in the presence of biotin and ATP in the general biochemical buffer condition, followed by biotin labeling. Biotin labeling sites by TurboID were found on the surface of green fluorescent protein. Biotin labeling of IκBα by TurboID indicated its binding to RelA. Furthermore, TurboID-dependent biotin labeling of monoclonal antibodies from rabbits and mice could be directly used for immunoblotting detection of specific proteins without the purification step. These results indicate that TurboID provides a very useful and simple method for biotin labeling of functional proteins.

Keywords: Antibody; BioID; Biotin; Biotin labeling; Proximity biotinylation; TurboID.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Antibodies / metabolism*
  • Biotin / metabolism*
  • Biotinylation
  • Green Fluorescent Proteins / metabolism
  • NF-KappaB Inhibitor alpha / metabolism
  • Protein Binding
  • Staining and Labeling / methods*


  • Antibodies
  • NF-KappaB Inhibitor alpha
  • Green Fluorescent Proteins
  • Biotin