Biochemistry (Moscow)

, Volume 81, Issue 10, pp 1118–1135 | Cite as

Plant factories for the production of monoclonal antibodies

  • E. V. Sheshukova
  • T. V. Komarova
  • Y. L. DorokhovEmail author


Like animal cells, plant cells bear mechanisms for protein synthesis and posttranslational modification (glycosylation and phosphorylation) that allow them to be seriously considered as factories for therapeutic proteins, including antibodies, with the development of biotechnology. The plant platform for monoclonal antibody production is an attractive approach due to its flexibility, speed, scalability, low cost of production, and lack of contamination risk from animal-derived pathogens. Contemporary production approaches for therapeutic proteins rely on transgenic plants that are obtained via the stable transformation of plant cells as well as the transient (temporary) expression of foreign proteins. In this review, we discuss present-day approaches for monoclonal antibody production in plants (MAPP), features of carbohydrate composition, and methods for the humanization of the MAPP carbohydrate profile. MAPPs that have successfully passed preclinical studies and may be promising for use in clinical practice are presented here. Perspectives on using MAPPs are determined by analyzing their economic benefits and production rates, which are especially important in personalized cancer therapy as well as in cases of bioterrorism and pandemics.

Key words

monoclonal antibody immunoglobulin G glycosylation antibody-dependent cellular cytotoxicity immunotherapy plant viruses vector 



antibody-dependent cellular cytotoxicity


asparagine-linked glycosylation


asparagine residue at position 297 in IgG heavy chain


bean yellow dwarf virus


constant region of immunoglobulin heavy chain


constant region of immunoglobulin light chain


CMP-acetylneuraminic acid


cowpea mosaic virus


epidermal growth factor receptor


endoplasmic reticulum


Ebola virus


fragment antigen binding


fragment crystallizable




α1,3-fucosyl transferase 11 and 12


α1,4-fucosyl transferase 13


fragment variable










α1,3-mannosyl-glycoprotein 2β-N-acetylglucosamine transferase


α1,6-mannosyl-glycoprotein 2β-N-acetylglucosamine transferase


β1,4-N-acetylglucosamine transferase III


human immunodeficiency virus




class G immunoglobulin


Junin virus




monoclonal antibodies produced in plants




N-acetylneuraminic acid


non-Hodgkin lymphoma




Bacillus anthracis protective antigen


TMA 2G12 produced in tobacco plant


potato virus X


plant-produced TMA rituximab


respiratory syncytial virus


single-chain variable fragment (fusion protein consisting of VL and VH connected with linker peptide)


secretory IgA


therapeutic monoclonal antibodies produced in animal cells


tobacco mosaic virus


plant-produced TMA trastuzumab


variable region of Ig heavy chain


variable region of Ig light chain


West Nile virus


TMA interacting with GP120 HIV


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Copyright information

© Pleiades Publishing, Ltd. 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • E. V. Sheshukova
    • 1
  • T. V. Komarova
    • 1
    • 2
  • Y. L. Dorokhov
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  1. 1.Vavilov Institute of General GeneticsRussian Academy of SciencesMoscowRussia
  2. 2.Belozersky Institute of Physico-Chemical BiologyLomonosov Moscow State UniversityMoscowRussia

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