cell viability assays

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Biju
Biju's picture
cell viability assays

Hi all
Is there any advantage of using methods using ATP measurement for cell viability studies compared to MTT assay?
Thanks.
Biju

samm
samm's picture
MTT is a rather crude end

MTT is a rather crude end-point assay to measure redox potential (and indirectly viability: live cells have a membrane potential and mitochondrial potential, high metabolic states result in mitochondrial biogenesis/enhanced activation, as does enhanced cell proliferation).
MTT has a small dynamic range ("window"), and its a terminal assay.
Fluorimetric ATP analyses allow for kinetic assays, and have a much larger dynamic range and sensitivity. Many of these assays can actually be conducted with labile mitochondrial potential dyes to get dual parameter kinetic + snapshot pictures of cell viability over time.
On the flip side, MTT is dirt cheap and only requires some patience and a basic spectrophotometer.