Applied Cytometry - Pioneering Software Simplicity

Multiplex Technology


The genomics revolution has enhanced the need to detect gene sequences, protein interactions and other biological reactions in drug discovery, biomedical research and clinical diagnostics. As a result, technologies have emerged allowing the simultaneous analysis of bioassays, which increases throughput and deliver results faster.

Multiplex technology allows the simultaneous qualitative or quantitative analysis of analytes using color-coded microspheres in a single tube or well.

Precise concentrations of two fluorescent dyes have been used to internally dye 100 distinctly colored bead sets to create a 100 bead array (map). Each bead can be coated with reagents specific for the bioassay, including antigens, antibodies, oligo-nucleotides, or enzyme substrates. A reporter molecule is labeled with a fluorescent dye for qualitative or quantitative analysis of the bioassay.

The advantages of multiplex technology over other bioassays are numerous:

  • High throughput means 20,000 microspheres per second can be analyzed, and a large number of different bioassays can be performed and detected at the same time, while each bioassay is assigned to a uniquely colored bead set. Smaller sample sizes allow researchers to conserve rare samples.

  • Versatility increases dramatically, as bioassays (including, nucleic acids, antigen-antibody binding, enzymes, and receptor-ligand) can be assayed simultaneously on one instrument.

  • Real time analysis allows researchers to profile different analytes (biological reactions) in same patient sample simultaneously.

  • Flexibility increases because the technology can be customized to the user’s specific bioassay needs by developing further multiplex assays on uniquely colored beads.

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