Finding the right reagent for your research with the CiteAb life science product search engine


Min Read

In this blog:

  • Have you used CiteAb to filter by validation, application or reactivity?
  • Or browse published images of products in action?
  • What about evaluating third-party environmental impact labels and validation information?

We have collected information on how over 14 million reagents have been used in the literature and compiled this data into one place. 

Our reagent database can be easily browsed, with experimental information and a comprehensive list of citations associated with each product, helping you to compare research antibodies, biochemicals, cell lines & research models, proteins and life science kits before buying direct from the supplier.  

Today, we share our best practice guide for finding the right reagent for your experiment in the most efficient and reliable way via our search engine.

Why use the CiteAb reagent search engine to find life science products for your research?

Why use the CiteAb reagent search engine to find life science research products

With millions of life science products available, the research reagent market is incredibly large and can be a risky, time consuming space to navigate when starting from a simple google search. 

Finding the right reagents is really important in ensuring research reproducibility; estimates suggest that $28bn is spent annually on irreproducible preclinical research in the US alone, showing this to be a common issue. [1]

Using a life science product finder such as CiteAb can give you more confidence in product selection decisions, as well as speeding up the process so you can invest more time into your research.

A step by step guide to using CiteAb

First, pick your search engine.

We have five distinct reagent search tools that you can use:

So, choose your search engine and type in the product you’re looking for. If you’re not sure of the specific product you want, it’s worth noting that you can search by things such as target, type of product (for example recombinant monoclonal antibody, western blot primary antibody, goat anti-mouse secondary antibody), as well as specific reagent names. 

The five reagent search engine you can use on CiteAb, allowing you to evaluate: antibodies, biochemicals, cell lines, assay kits and proteins.

Harness the power of experimental filters

For each search engine, we include a selection of filters you can use to narrow down your search criteria and find the most relevant product for your work, quickly. 

We include filters encompassing application, reactivity, supplier, as well as reagent-type specific filters. 

Some reagent type specific filters include: 

AntibodiesCell Lines & Research ModelsKits & AssaysProteinsBiochemicals
ClonalityGenetic modificationDetection methodGMP complianceStructural classification
FormulationSpeciesAssay typeClassificationFunction
Validation methodModel typeDetection methodTagLabel

View results ranked by citations

Once you’ve narrowed down your search by filters, you’ll see a list of products that we have in our database.

These products are ranked by citation countaka, how your peers have previously used the product successfully in published work. No supplier can pay to be ranked at the top of the search results, meaning this is an unbiased view of the products available on the market.

(It is worth noting that the top cited research reagent may not always be the best choice for your work, particularly if new products are available which don’t yet have many citations – this is why further evaluation is also important!)

Don’t despair if you can’t find the product you were looking for in this list! We have pages dedicated to companies offering custom services, covering:

Evaluate experimental information

Once you’ve picked out a product from the list of search results, you will be taken to a product page. On this page, we curate further valuable data to help in your selection decision.

With a combination of AI-driven text mining tech and scientist reviewer teams to ensure accuracy, we extract data such as application, reactivity, and dilution from the scientific literature and present a simple overview of how the product has been used.

This enables you to quickly pick out the relevant details you need, and assess the suitability of the reagent before delving into more specific details.  

Example of the experimental information breakdown we display on CiteAb product pages

Suppliers also provide us with information for their products that you can easily evaluate, such as validation, applications and reactivity. 

Assess published images

To help you visually assess how a life science product has been used, we also provide published images that you can browse. 

We collect these from the scientific literature and crop to the panel of interest so you can see the exact place the product has been used, and to what end. 

Myosin Light Chain 2 antibody 10906-1-AP from Proteintech used for Immunocytochemistry in Human. Published in Scientific Reports on 25th September 2018 by A. Gaignerie, N. Lefort et al. under a CC-BY license.
Myosin Light Chain 2 antibody 10906-1-AP from Proteintech used for Immunocytochemistry in Human. Published in Scientific Reports on 25th September 2018 by A. Gaignerie, N. Lefort et al. under a CC-BY license.

We are currently working on an exciting project involving the published images we collect, so do stay tuned for future news on this! 

Evaluate the citations in more depth

Although citation counts provide a powerful guide to products that may be suitable for your work, it’s helpful to dig into the details in the academic references to confirm if the reagent is right for your research. We link out directly to the pdf of the citations we list on product pages, to help speed up this process.

We collect data from pre-prints, open-access journals and subscription-only journals, due to a number of agreements with academic publishers. 

By taking a look at the citations that we’ve compiled you can see how exactly the product has been used. This can provide compelling evidence for product use and help give you that final vote of confidence in your purchasing decision.

Extra resources to look out for

On top of the experimental and product information we also link to valuable resources on product pages, to help you evaluate as much data as possible on the product. 

We recently added ACT labels, published by My Green Lab, onto the CiteAb search engine. 

These are environmental impact labels, described by My Green Lab as ‘An eco-nutrition label for lab products, providing information about the environmental impact of manufacturing, using, and disposing of a product and its packaging.’ 

When one is available for a product, this will be displayed on the search engine product page, so that you can more easily factor sustainability into your purchasing decisions. You can read more about the integration of ACT labels into CiteAb here. 

We have also added links to YCharOS characterisation reports on relevant antibody pages. 

YCharOS independently performs antibody studies for a range of companies’ commercial research antibodies against important targets, in western blot, immunofluorescence and immunoprecipitation. 

By linking out to these zenodo reports when available, you will be able to evaluate important characterisation information more efficiently.

Go to the supplier page to purchase directly 

After you’ve evaluated all the information we provide or link to from our reagent search platform, you are able to continue further evaluation on the supplier site.

We link our to the company’s relevant pages where you can purchase products directly from them once you’ve made your decision.

Give it a go yourself – try the reagent search engine below!

Other resources that can be used with the CiteAb search engine 

We have a number of other resources which you may find helpful on CiteAb:

Let others know about CiteAb!

We love being able to help so many researchers around the world. It is a privilege to be able to build such a brilliant scientific community who use CiteAb, and it is fantastic to hear about the ways researchers have used our tool in some really exciting work. 

If you find our reagent search engine useful, do spread the word! The more users we have, the more we can grow and improve the search engine.

And finally, do you have any ideas on how our life science research platform can be improved to help you in your work? We are always looking for feedback, so do reach out to the team.

– Skye and the CiteAb team


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