UNIT 9.24 High-Throughput Cytotoxicity Screening by Propidium Iodide Staining

  1. Bruce S. Edwards,
  2. Irena Ivnitski-Steele,
  3. Susan M. Young,
  4. Virginia M. Salas,
  5. Larry A. Sklar

Published Online: 1 JUL 2007

DOI: 10.1002/0471142956.cy0924s41

Current Protocols in Cytometry

Current Protocols in Cytometry

How to Cite

Edwards, B. S., Ivnitski-Steele, I., Young, S. M., Salas, V. M. and Sklar, L. A. 2007. High-Throughput Cytotoxicity Screening by Propidium Iodide Staining. Current Protocols in Cytometry. 41:9.24:9.24.1–9.24.11.

Author Information

  1. University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, New Mexico

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 1 JUL 2007
  2. Published Print: JUL 2007


This unit describes a system for the automated high-throughput analysis of cell cytotoxicity in 96-well and 384-well microplates. Discrete cell cultures are analyzed at rates of 40/min (∼2.5 min/96 wells, ∼10 min/384 wells) and cytotoxicity is quantified on the basis of a combination of propidium iodide (PI) fluorescence analysis and cell counting performed by the flow cytometer. Only 2 µl is aspirated from a culture for analysis so that assays can be performed in small volumes to minimize reagent cost and usage.


  • high-throughput screening;
  • cytotoxicity;
  • propidium iodide;
  • cell viability assay