Our latest data report focuses on how your company can succeed in the Western Blot antibody market. This builds on our recent blogs which explored techniques for success in IHC and Flow Cytometry, and outlines what suppliers need to offer in order to increase their market share.

To produce the data in this report, our team has developed tools that analyse hundreds of thousands of citations for individual antibodies. We then focus on those where the antibody being cited was specifically used for Western Blotting experiments.

Dr Andrew Chalmers, founder of CiteAb, said: “Western Blot is the most frequently used application and is responsible for 50 per cent of antibody citations. This compares to IHC which is responsible for 15 per cent and ChIP at 10 per cent.

“If you’re doing well in this market, you’ve a large claim on the overall antibody market. We’re seeing the biggest companies have success here – Cell Signaling Technology (28 per cent), Abcam and SantaCruz (both close to 20 per cent).

Bio-Rad: the largest producer of Western Blotting equipment.

“We can also see other companies that may be a way off the leaderboard but are putting in significant efforts to increase their market share – one such company is BioRad which is the largest producer of Western Blotting equipment.”

So what do you need to stock in your catalogue to do well in this market?

Western Blotting uses both monoclonal and polylconal antibodies so unlike for Flow Cytometry you don’t need to focus your portfolio on one or the other. Currently the balance is 54 per cent polyclonals and 46 per cent monoclonals.

In terms of secondary antibodies you need to stock HRP conjugates, which remains the most used conjugate for Western Blotting. However, as we see an increase in the use of fluorescent Western Blotting technology we also see increased use in fluorescent conjugates, including IRDye and Alex Fluor dyes, so ensuring you offer these is key to growth in this field.

Those companies looking to increase their share of the Western Blotting antibody market should look at which institutions are using the technique the most. Andrew said: “Over the last three years, the top three institutions using Western Blotting have been Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Harvard University and the University of Texas.

“What is striking about our data on institutional use of Western Blotting is that six of the top ten institutions are from China. We also see that the percentage of citations from China using Western Blotting is over 70 per cent, compared to just over 50 per cent for the USA, UK and Japan.

Shanghai Jiao Tong University, China
Shanghai Jiao Tong University, China

“This suggests that the technique is particularly important in China and explains why Chinese institutions make up so many of the top ten – and it also suggests that promotion of products to the Chinese institutions will help increase Western Blot market share, and validating antibodies for Western Blotting will help companies to expand into the fast-growing Chinese market.”

And if you want to break into the Western Blot market what are the top targets? AKT1 and Actin top the list – but with the release of this report we are making the top ten available for free. To receive a free sample of data or request a quote for the full dataset (of over 5000 ranked protein targets) simply drop Andrew an email.

And if you’re a researcher using Western Blotting, do comment below and tell us where you like to source your products and why. Alternatively you can join in the conversation at any time on Twitter using @CiteAb, or on Facebook.

– Matt and the CiteAb team