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Within months of the onset of the worldwide COVID-19 pandemic, the Berkeley Lights Platform was used to identify lead molecules that bind and block the interaction of SARS-CoV-2 virus proteins with their human cell receptors.

Two of these antibodies comprise AstraZeneca’s antibody cocktail now in Phase III Clinical Trials.

Putting function first to select lead antibody candidates in 1 day

Using the Opto™ Viral Neutralization workflow, scientists at Vanderbilt University were able to functionally characterize tens of thousands of individual B cells recovered from patient samples in a single day. This allowed them to deliver sequences of confirmed neutralizing antibodies to downstream manufacturing partners in 18 days.

These antibodies are now part of AstraZeneca’s Phase III clinical trial.

Berkeley Lights Opto Viral Neutralization workflow



Clone tens of thousands of B cells into pico-liter sized NanoPen™ chambers on a microfluidic chip.


Perform multiple fluorescence-based assays on the same cell to determine antigen specificity, cross-reactivity, and function.


Simplify downstream sequence recovery with on-chip mRNA capture and cDNA synthesis.


Recover sequences of high-value, functionally characterized lead candidates.

Take a behind the scenes look at how Vanderbilt characterized COVID-19 antibodies:

Want to learn more about the Opto Viral Neutralization workflow? Just fill out the short form below and our product specialist will reach out within 24 hours.