Why is Fetal Bovine Serum Gaining Popularity in Recent Years?
Fetal bovine serum (FBS) is a by-product of the dairy industry, which is widely used in cell culture. The serum is extracted from the blood collected from a cow’s fetus at the slaughterhouse. Broadly, the serum is used in a wide range of applications like cloning, animal diagnostics, stem-cell research, vaccine production, and many others.
In recent years, lots of experiments have been conducted in cloning animal tissues. With the advancement in biotechnology, the fetal bovine serum is frequently used in carrying these experiments. Fetal bovine serum is widely used in cell culture applications. Furthermore, because of having a high quantity of hormones, carrier, and macromolecular proteins, the fetal serum is widely used in in-vitro fertilization. In this process of fertilization, the embryonic cells are transferred into the culture medium where a cell grows conveniently in a specific environment.
What is a Fetal Bovine Serum?
Fetal bovine serum (FBS) is a blood product that is extracted from the blood collected from a cow’s fetus at the slaughterhouse. The serum is the most frequently used serum supplement for the in-vitro fertilization of eukaryotic cells. It contains a low level of antibodies and more growth factors; this is why the serum has versatile applications in different types of cell culture.
FBS has leveled up the cell culture testing standards and is also been extensively used to promote growth medium. Additionally, the serum includes several other components like transport proteins, sugars, vitamins, attachment factors, spreading factors, and growth factors for the overall development of the cell.
Why is Fetal Bovine Serum Used Widely?
There are several other animal sera, such as horse, goat, rabbit, etc., available and utilized, but the fetal bovine serum is universally employed. This is because the serum contains a scattered amount of gamma globulin, higher levels of growth factors, and lesser complement proteins than others. Furthermore, fetal bovine serum aids in cell proliferation, thus providing nutrients and a suitable environment for the growth of cells. In addition, FBS decreases the possibility of mammalian cells binding or any lysing in the cell culture. It also rationalizes the preference of fetal bovine over newborn or donor.
Applications of Fetal Bovine Serum
In 1950, Theodore Puck introduced the use of FBS to enhance cell proliferation for the first time. For the next several decades, the serum has been ubiquitous across many laboratories worldwide. With time, the indispensability of fetal bovine serum acts as a popular supplement for cell and tissue applications. Following are some major applications of the serum:
- FBS is broadly used in stem-cell research, cloning, biotechnology research and development, cryo-preservation, animal diagnostics, and even in the production of vaccines.
- Most importantly, the serum is widely used in in-vitro cell culture of eukaryotic cells.
- Apart from cell culture, the serum aids in stimulating cell differentiation, providing hormones for cell proliferation and growth.
- In addition, the serum helps in supplying nutrients, transport proteins, trace elements, and extension factors, and also in fostering a suitable environment by stabilizing and detoxifying factors hampering the growth of the cell.
Covid-19 Impact on Fetal Bovine Serum Market
The Covid-19 outbreak has devastated several other industries including the fetal bovine serum market. The coronavirus infection is highly communicable and can easily infect a person. This is the reason behind the shutting down of many research and academic institutions where fetal bovine serum is used for research activities and experiments. Moreover, due to strict and prolonged lockdowns worldwide, the slaughterhouses were closed and this badly impacted the collection of raw material needed for the production of fetal bovine serum.
However, the increasing rate of coronavirus infection and its spread arises the demand for a potent vaccine or any antiviral drug to protect people from this deadly virus; this has caused a positive impact on the fetal bovine serum market. To serve the demand many biotechnological and biopharmaceutical companies have come forward and are taking up developmental activities to manufacture vaccines for the treatment of the infection, thus boosting the market growth of the fetal bovine serum market.
Emerging Global Fetal Bovine Serum Market
Rising demand for research and development activities in scientific fields like biotechnology and biopharmaceuticals is going to accelerate the growth of the global fetal bovine serum market in the coming years. The market is expected to grow at a CAGR of 7.0%, by generating a revenue of $1,568,586.4 thousand in the estimated period (2021-2028). However, the increasing prices of serum and lack of skilled laborers for handling may hinder the market growth.
The Future of Fetal Bovine Serum
Due to growing demand and restricted availability, the price of fetal bovine serum is going to increase in the coming years. Its supply completely depends on environmental factors and federal farming guidelines. However, to maintain the quality, safety, consistency, and regulatory agreement, many innovative types of research will be initiated to replace fetal bovine serum with synthetic alternatives.
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