Trusted by 10,000+ Scientists Since 2002. View Our 5-Star Google Review, Select Citations and 4,000+ Citations at Google Scholar.

The Benefits of Outsourcing Protein Expression Services For Your Research

Jul 25th 2023

The Benefits of Outsourcing Protein Expression Services For Your Research

Choosing a protein expression system is crucial for research requiring significant amounts of recombinant protein. You may find a staggering variety of service providers with just quick research online. This could be intimidating for a beginner, which is why many are turning to outsourcing options.

Recombinant proteins have many medical and scientific uses, including diagnosing and treating diseases. Although you can produce them in-house, there are various benefits to outsourcing recombinant protein production.

If you are considering choosing a reliable protein expression service for your projects, there's no better resource to help you make an informed decision than this post.

This guide explores the benefits of outsourcing protein expression services for researchers, non-governmental organizations, and businesses by finding and working with the right experts in today's saturated life science sector.

First things first

What is Protein Expression?

 what is a recombinant protein

Image by Tatiana from


Protein expression is the term that describes mechanisms through which proteins are synthesized, modified, and regulated in cells and organisms. In protein research, the term "protein expression" can also mean the application of laboratory procedures necessary to produce proteins.

In addition, protein expression has evolved into a crucial laboratory technique for studying various biochemical, molecular biological, and protein-related topics.

For further studies, such as identifying the three-dimensional arrangement of proteins, as biochemical markers or probes, or as novel pharmaceutical products, among others, expressed protein products that are operational and exhibit traits comparable to their native versions. Protein expression can also give scientists the substrates or enzymes they need to do more research.

Therapeutic uses of recombinant proteins include using them to replace defective or aberrant proteins, enabling targeted medication administration, and as vaccinations. In contrast, diagnostic uses primarily consist of their utility as controls in procedures like lateral flow immunoassay.

The expression of recombinant proteins for diagnostic or therapeutic applications, as opposed to those approved for RUO, is subject to stringent regulations.

A pilot protein expression is typically carried out on a smaller scale before a full-scale protein expression begins. Given the complexities of these procedures, outsourcing protein expression services is on the rise.

Exploring Protein Expression Services

 how are recombinant proteins made

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

What are Protein Expression Services?

Protein expression services offer small- to large-scale protein expression and purification at economical rates, as well as more advanced and tailored packages, such as the testing of, say, a client's preferred conditions for expressing recombinant proteins across multiple systems simultaneously or for producing proteins under a more extensive set of circumstances in a single system.

These services cover every stage, from gene synthesis and the development of expression vectors through manufacturing pilot quantities of proteins in flasks and large quantities of proteins using bioreactors and fermenters.

It wasn't until 1989 that outsourcing was recognized as a legitimate corporate strategy, but since then, it's become an industry standard. In most cases, businesses, institutions, and individuals will explore an outsourcing approach for their support functions if those functions fall beyond the scope of the company's core competencies.

Several specialist providers offer a range of services for protein expression and production.

A significant number of prospective clients who want ongoing access to high-quality recombinant protein ask whether it would be more cost-effective for them to outsource protein expression to a specialist provider rather than build up or expand their in-house capability.

Several specialist providers offer a range of services for protein expression and production. Outsourcing this application has the potential to save both time and resources while also providing access to specialized technical skills and infrastructure for the expression and manufacturing of proteins of interest.

These services can provide researchers with various alternatives for protein expression systems and the benefits of comprehensive pipelines that start with the gene of interest and end with the purified protein.

When selecting a service, one of the aspects that should be considered is the type of expression system you need, which could be bacterial, baculovirus, or cell line.

Below are the primary methods for expressing recombinant proteins, which you must consider.

Primary Recombinant Protein Expression Systems

 Recombinant protein expression systems

Image by fernando zhiminaicela from


A wide range of expression hosts are used to manufacture recombinant proteins, each with advantages and drawbacks.

  • E. coli is not only simple to work with and affordable but also ideally suited for expressing bacterial proteins. But they can't add post-translational modifications (PTMs), meaning their protein products don't fully reflect the original state.
  • Yeasts like S. cerevisiae are also low-priced and easy to work with, and they have the added benefit of secreting hardly any of their proteins, making purification much simpler. Conversely, Yeasts have a slower development rate than bacterial counterparts and are more likely to cause proteins to become too glycosylated.
  • Insect hosts like Sf9 can support the expression of more complex proteins than either bacteria or yeast. Still, their use is constrained by a workflow that involves the synthesis of baculoviruses, which takes a significant amount of time.
  • Why, then, would you choose an outsourced production?

  • Mammalian expression hosts, such as human embryonic kidney cells (HEK293) or Chinese hamster ovary (CHO) cells, can produce various PTMs and influence protein production by employing inducible promoters. Other examples of mammalian expression systems include Chinese hamster ovary (CHO) cells. They can also be used to produce stable cell lines, making them an excellent choice for projects that will take a long time. This is why diagnostic and therapeutic proteins are typically produced using mammalian expression systems.
  • Several recombinant proteins, often known as rec. Proteins, are now accessible for purchase in the marketplace. Since many of these proteins (especially soluble proteins that are secreted) are biologically active, there is little reason to opt for in-person production.

    Why, then, would you choose an outsourced production?

    To begin with, there are several reasons (and all of them are excellent ones!).

    Although the answer to this question will vary from company to company, we have compiled a list of the top ten advantages of outsourcing your company's protein expression operations.

    Benefits of Outsourcing Protein Expression

    1. Reliably Reproduce Biological Outcomes

    Working with a single production source can lessen the difference between batches. There is no chance of your supplier changing, which is always possible when dealing with OEM products.

    You avoid costly and time-intensive supplier validations that may be necessary if the batch fails to match, saving you both money and time.

    Furthermore, several commercially available custom proteins still need to be biologically assessed. If you aren't well-informed, spending time and resources on a protein that falls short of your needs is possible. Fortunately, you don't have to worry about this issue once you work with a protein expression expert.

    2. Absolute Source Control

    Protein expression and purification service

    Image by felixioncool from Pixabay

    When you choose a service provider, you have full knowledge of where and by whom your protein is generated and can tailor your quality control (QC).

    Proteins are manufactured to ensure they meet your specifications, and you can count on the same method being used for repeat batches.

    There is little to no variation from batch to batch. This ensures manufacturing uniformity, which makes it possible to replicate your results.

    How do you know that the current supplier is the one who produces the product, and that this supplier will remain consistent in the future? You can only achieve this by finding and outsourcing to the right provider.

    3. Spend less on In-house Protein Expression.

    One of the primary reasons why companies are more likely to outsource study is to save money. The cost savings offered by the exemplary protein expression service are significant. Outsourcers can save money without cutting into their profits by taking advantage of cheaper platform options and the economies of scale they provide.

    If your activity requires large quantities of proteins expressed, you'll have to negotiate bulk costs, although a custom batch is usually less expensive after the first manufacture. Also, production usually lets you change your amount to meet growing demands at a lower cost.

    If you routinely acquire protein production service, compare those costs to that of in-house operations. You can determine the best course of action if you carefully analyze your expenses.

    4. Ensure the Viability of Your Projects

    How frequently do potentially fruitful studies get scrapped because of the high cost of bioagents and proteins? Your life science projects become more feasible once you find affordable and reliable protein synthesis companies.

    5. Increases Flexibility

    As your project progresses, one attractive option you can enjoy with outsourced providers is the development of variations from a specific protein type.

    6. Cost reductions in both technology and infrastructure

    Since purchasing infrastructure and subscribing to premium databases is costly, many businesses and institutions choose to form lasting partnerships with life science suppliers to save money while still receiving the customized services they require.

    7. Exposure to Skilled Individuals and Specialties

    For some, their primary motivation for using a protein expression service is to gain access to expert researchers and their resources without hiring and educating new staff.

    Leveraging a protein synthesis and expression provider is advantageous since it opens the door to fresh talent pools with specialized experience in expression systems, technology, and the latest infrastructure.

    8. Maximize Competitive Advantage

    The degree of adaptability an organization possesses is another frequently considered factor. Peptide synthesis, custom antibody production, and protein production can be outsourced, allowing businesses to concentrate their efforts on their core competencies while delegating fewer essential tasks to specialists more qualified to perform such tasks. This helps businesses capitalize fully on their competitive edge over their rivals.

    9. Risk-sharing

    Another advantage of outsourced services is the ability to share risks. It is in the best interest of outsourcing services to supply the highest standards of products because the manufacturer and the outsourced provider will be held responsible for the product produced by the ultimate client.

    10. A 24-hour operation

    When you outsource to a country in another time zone, you have the added benefit of leveraging all the 24 hours daily. When in-house workers clock out for the day, outsourcing partners can step in and finish operations to ensure you meet the demands of your projects.

    11. Adjustable Operation Schedules

    Employing researchers on a full-time basis can be a very pricey endeavor, mainly if the requirements for research are fluid. If the organization needs more or less research capability simultaneously, it can adjust its deal with the provider accordingly.

    Making The Right Choice

     Protein expression techniques

    Image by Michal Jarmoluk from


    Suppose you're not sure which protein manufacturing system to go with. In that case, we can help you determine the best action plan by considering your timeline, budget, and the characteristics of the protein you need.

    With many platforms and supporting labs, we can rest assured of the highest possible product purity, minimum risk of contamination, and quickest turnaround time through our recombinant protein expression services.

    Each system has its dedicated platform and distinct quality control criteria. Each platform is overseen by competent team leaders who ensure that the proteins they produce meet our customers' requirements.

    Our knowledge is unparalleled because we have developed numerous proteins, over 31,000 Elisa kits, and more than 32,000 bioreagents and have devoted teams working on different systems.


    Even while it is feasible to create recombinant proteins on-site, buying them from a third party might save researchers a lot of time and money. Furthermore, a supplier who can point to a successful track record of recombinant protein synthesis may possess the necessary skills to help with requests for protein engineering or scale-up.

    Additional benefits of outsourcing the manufacture of recombinant proteins include improved uniformity and repeatability, the certainty that expression occurred in a setting subject to strict quality control, and the likelihood of stable cell line formation, if necessary.

    By leveraging our services for protein expression and antibody sequencing service, you will have access to the superior reagents and technologies in our comprehensive inventory. Our hardworking group of experts is always ready to lend a hand each step of the way, and they will collaborate with you to make sure you meet all the requirements of your project.

    Subscribe to Receive Updates & Promotions from Biomatik