MTS cell proliferation assay is a colorimetric and high throughput method for sensitive quantification of viable cells, which is performed by adding the reagent into the cell culture media without the intermittent steps and requires no washing or solubilization step. The NAD(P)H-dependent dehydrogenase enzymes in metabolically active cells can cause the reduction of MTS tetrazolium compound and generate the colored formazan product that is soluble in cell culture media. Since viable cells can convert the MTS tetrazolium compound to the soluble and colored formazan product, color intensity can be significantly increased by measuring absorbance at 490-500 nm.


Figure 1. Structures of MTS tetrazolium salt and its formazan product (Anakok O F, et al., 2010).

Overview of MTS Cell Proliferation Assay Service

At Creative Bioarray, we provide MTS cell proliferation assay for the sensitive quantification of viable cells. The MTS cell proliferation assay involves culturing and treating cells, as well as adding MTS directly to the assay wells at a recommended ratio. Cells are incubated 1-4 hours and then absorbance is measured.


Figure 2. MTS cell proliferation assay procedure

At Creative Bioarray, we can apply our MTS cell proliferation assay to various fields, including but not limited:

  • Measurement of cell proliferation in response to growth factors, cytokines, mitogens and nutrients.
  • Analysis of cytotoxic and cytostatic compounds, such as anticancer drugs and pharmaceutical compounds.
  • Assessment of physiological mediators that inhibit cell growth.

Sample Requirement

The cell lines for assays should be provided by customers and our company can provide commonly used cell lines. This assay uses adherent and suspension cells.

If you want to know specific samples requirements, please feel free to contact us.


  • Equipped with multi-well spectrophotometer (ELISA reader) and colorimetric microplate reader
  • Simple and validated procedure
  • High-throughput
  • All controls and samples in duplicate

MTS cell proliferation assay is cost-effective and relatively easy to setup. At Creative Bioarray, many excellent and experienced experts will optimize the experimental protocol according to your requirement and guarantee the high-quality results for your research. As every project has different requirements, please contact our specialists to discuss your specific needs.


1. Anakok O F. Serrulatanes from Eremophila Neglecta: Their Spectrum of Antibacterial Activity, Cytotoxicity and Mode of Action. Research--University of South Australia, 2010.

* For scientific research only

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