The use of avidin-biotin interaction in immunoenzymatic techniques

J Histochem Cytochem. 1979 Aug;27(8):1131-9. doi: 10.1177/27.8.90074.


Biotin was covalently attached to antibodies, antigens and enzymes, and the effects of this labeling on the antigen and antibody binding capacity and on enzymatic activity were tested. Based on avidin-biotin interaction, the labeled proteins were used in quantitative enzyme-immunoassay and enzyme-immunohistochemical staining procedures. Two procedures were developed. In the first procedure, named the Bridged Avidin-Biotin (BRAB) technique four steps were used sequentially in order to quantify or detect an immobilized antigen: 1) incubation with biotin-labeled antibody; 2) incubation with avidin; 3) incubation with biotin-labeled enzyme; 4) measurement or histochemical staining of the enzyme. The technique is based on the observation that avidin possesses four active sites. In the second procedure, named the Labeled Avidin-Biotin (LAB) technique, biotin-labeled antibody and enzyme-labeled avidin are used sequentially. Enzyme-associated antigen is then quantified or revealed immunohistochemically. The optimal conditions for enzyme-immunoassay and enzyme-immunohistochemical staining using BRAB and LAB procedures were established.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antigen-Antibody Reactions
  • Avidin*
  • Binding Sites, Antibody
  • Biotin*
  • Cattle
  • Immunoenzyme Techniques*
  • Ovalbumin / analogs & derivatives*
  • Rabbits
  • Sheep
  • Staining and Labeling


  • Avidin
  • Biotin
  • Ovalbumin