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Sensors (Basel). 2012;12(9):12347-60. doi: 10.3390/s120912347. Epub 2012 Sep 10.

Multiple applications of Alamar Blue as an indicator of metabolic function and cellular health in cell viability bioassays.

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Department of Life Sciences, The University of the West Indies, West Indies, St Augustine, Trinidad and Tobago.


Accurate prediction of the adverse effects of test compounds on living systems, detection of toxic thresholds, and expansion of experimental data sets to include multiple toxicity end-point analysis are required for any robust screening regime. Alamar Blue is an important redox indicator that is used to evaluate metabolic function and cellular health. The Alamar Blue bioassay has been utilized over the past 50 years to assess cell viability and cytotoxicity in a range of biological and environmental systems and in a number of cell types including bacteria, yeast, fungi, protozoa and cultured mammalian and piscine cells. It offers several advantages over other metabolic indicators and other cytotoxicity assays. However, as with any bioassay, suitability must be determined for each application and cell model. This review seeks to highlight many of the important considerations involved in assay use and design in addition to the potential pitfalls.


Alamar Blue; cell viability; cytotoxicity; resazurin

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