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Creative ways to get my hands antibodies - ...for free (Feb/20/2006 )

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Anyone else have money problems in the lab? I always seem to be mooching from the same people and have some decent ideas that can't be tested without the right antibodies, which we don't have enough money to buy (especially for a non-sure thing)

anyone ever heard of industry giving away small amounts of antibodies to an academic lab? Should I network more? What about starting an underground network of grad students who share reagents? Anyone ever sweet talked a sales rep into a free antibody? You think people on the forum would be willing to share reagents if I gave them my boss's FedEx number?

Anyone else have any creative ideas?
I need to graduate and a few extra reagents wouldn't hurt!



Some companies such as Santa Cruz give away antibodies if you have cited their antibodies in your publications. Once a friend of mine from a foreign country got an antibody from SC because we (in the US) have cited SC antibodies, although my friend is not among the authors.


At a university where I used to work, there was a lab on-site that would make antibodies for local labs for relatively cheap - have you checked into that at your university?

Also, my boss at my old company would buy antibodies at lower prices as "samples" - but it was an industrial setting not academia, so I don't know if that would help you.

Finally, are you looking for mono- or polyclonal? I know a start-up lab that makes monoclonal antibodies - in order to get customers they *might* be willing to hand some out. But obviously I can't speak for them, I could only send you in their direction.


I get quite a lot of free stuff. I write a nice email, stating what i'm doing, what i need, how our lab is very very poor sad.gif . Go on to say, that we want to try the stuff out before we buy, because we are so very very poor sad.gif . I've got hybond+ paper, sybr green kits, midi prep kits, polymerases, laders, transfection kits.... tried to get a new flow cytomoter for free, but the sales guy didn't budge dry.gif . Haven't tried for antibodies, but i suspect the same would work. for you see, we are so very, very poor. wink.gif



Hehe.... biggrin.gif

Thanks guys....I'll keep trying to play the poor impoverished grad student act to Santa Cruz and others. I've tried it before with mild success over the phone....but I guess by email it gives you the opportunity to lay it on really thick. Maybe I'll try that next



Hey Poor researchers (esp Vetticus),
Its really useful ideas what you have given to him, and this forum is pretty useful for many researchers who suffer to do their stuffs.. hats off to Bioforum.

But in the current lab where am working now (really poor lab, but all are doctors) they bought ''10 X PBS'' which was shocking for me being a biologist, its just waste of money if one can prepare that. I had been working in another lab earlier where we don't even buy mini preps, struggeled with all conventional methods, alkaline lysis.

keeping going


Hey, i might be in a very, very poor lab sad.gif , but once you get something for free once, they keep on sending you things to try!! It's like small christmasses all through the year. smile.gif

email definately gives you an advantage. You can go on and on about how your work is so interesting, but you can't afford this new whiz-bang reagent, and that you might be able to pursuade your PI into buying some (giving up the money that would have been spent on buying bread crumbs for dinner huh.gif *what?*). if you could just try it out, and show your PI that it works, and is worth the expense. After all, it is such a wonderful product, and although no other lab where you work uses it (that's why you can't steal a few uL from them), you've heard it cures cancer, eliminates wrinkles, and creates a new maserati from thin air. wink.gif
You can't use the phone all that often, becase your lab can't pay the bill. ohmy.gif
If you do this, they usually offer a discount if you decide to buy the product later. cool.gif

Trade fairs are also good for arranging freebees. I now have more pens and key rings from biotech coys than i can poke a stick at.

10X PBS... we had a new guy try to talk our boss into buying that. rolleyes.gif

Vetticus (completely using the "impoverished student in an impoverished lab" edge for all it's worth.)



I just tried getting a free antibody from Santa Cruz. It works!!! if you've published a paper with one of their antibodies not only do you get a free one but you get entered in a draw fro 10 free ones.

Thanks PCRman,



Greetings from Santa Cruz Biotechnology.

We noticed that you took advantage of our Investigator Award Program, so we would like to take this opportunity to let others know about this program. We will send one complimentary primary antibody per publication that cites the use of one or more of our products.

The product cited in the published article does not need to be a primary antibody in order to obtain a free primary antibody. It can be one of our positive control lysates, an siRNA, a secondary antibody, an Immunoprecipitation reagent, etc.

In order to obtain the complimentary antibody, you can email your publication to along with your complete shipping information and telephone number and the catalog number of the item you wish to receive. Please put Investigator Award in the subject line.

Alternatively, you may call our Technical Service department at 1-800-457-3801 ext. 2 and we will be happy to offer you an antibody for your citation of our products, no matter how poor you are.

Unfortunately, our company policy prohibits us from sending samples, but we do offer a full warranty for all of our antibodies. If you purchase a product and it fails to perform according to the recommendations in our product literature, we offer a credit or replacement. If we are unable to provide you with a suitable reagent, we will FULLY refund the antibody.

Thank you for citing Santa Cruz antibodies, and if you do so in the future, please make sure to let us know, and take full advantage of our Investigator Award policy. (And, the 10 free antibodies are awarded twice per year!)

Best luck to all of you in your research.

Technical Service
Santa Cruz Biotechnology


I had no idea abt such a program. Thanx for the info.


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