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Antimicrob Agents Chemother. 1996 Apr; 40(4): 835–838.
PMCID: PMC163215

Simple, fast, and accurate fluorometric method to determine drug susceptibility of Plasmodium falciparum in 24-well suspension cultures.


An in vitro test which quantifies drug inhibition of Plasmodium falciparum replication by measuring the fluorescence intensity of Hoechst 33258 dye bound to DNA is described. The procedure does not require expensive reagents or equipment and can be completed in less than 10 min. The assay was highly accurate and sensitive: cultures with as few as 0.4% schizont-infected erythrocytes could reliably be analyzed. The method was not biased by the actual parasite stage used; i.e., the amount of fluorescence detected in a sample of a culture of mature schizonts equaled the amount detected with the ring form culture derived from these schizonts. Even the presence of large proportions of free merozoites, which are easily neglected in microscopic estimates, did not bias the results. Furthermore, measurement of the chloroquine susceptibility of the multidrug-resistant K1 strain and the chloroquine-susceptible NF54 strain showed that the method is most suitable for quantifying the drug resistance of P. falciparum.

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Selected References

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