Mitochondrial Membrane Potential Assay

Incucyte® Mitochondrial Membrane Potential Assay

Mitochondrial membrane potential (MMP or ΔΨm ) is an essential component for maintaining the electrochemical potential of hydrogen ions needed to synthesize ATP via the electron transport chain and has been shown to be an important factor in mitochondrial health. Under normal physiological activity, MMP remains relatively stable. However, long-term disturbance has detrimental effects on cellular health and viability and lead to various pathophysiologies. Monitoring MMP provides a sensitive and early indicator of mitochondrial integrity and is crucial in identifying mitochondrial dysfunction related to pathological diseases such as diabetes, cancer, and neurodegeneration.

Common assays used to evaluate MMP often rely on indirect, concatenated end-point measurements that cannot be easily verified by morphological changes. The Incucyte® Mitochondrial Membrane Potential Assay enables real-time detection of transient and long-term changes in MMP in live cells and can be multiplexed with cell labeling, apoptosis, or cytotoxicity reagents for additional measurements of cell health. Track changes in MMP continuously to unravel the complexities of cellular homeostasis and disease.


Introducing Incucyte® Mitochondrial Membrane Potential Assay

An integrated solution to automatically visualize and quantify changes in MMP in real time, all within your cell culture incubator.  Similar to TMRE and TMRM assays, the cell-permeable Incucyte® MMP Orange Reagent accumulates in active mitochondria in proportion to the ΔΨm generated by the electrochemical gradient across the mitochondrial membrane.   A drop in MMP denotes a mitochondrial disruption in function and/or integrity and can also be used as an early indicator of apoptosis.

This assay kit utilizes two control compounds: FCCP, an uncoupling agent that transports H+ ions across the mitochondrial membrane and results in depolarization (indicated by a decrease in fluorescence), and Oligomycin A, an inhibitor of ATP synthase which results in hyperpolarization (indicated by an increase in fluorescence).

Key Advantages

Evaluate mitochondrial stress

Utilizing the Incucyte® MMP Orange Reagent Kit, rapidly visualize and quantify changes in MMP using a simple mix-and-read protocol.

Measure changes in MMP in live cells

Generate automated, quantitative, and reproducible MMP measurements in live cells. Quantify changes in MMP by measuring fluorescence intensity over time.

Figure 1. Kinetic monitoring of mitochondrial membrane potential. HeLa cells were treated with Vehicle, Camptothecin, FCCP,  or Oligomycin in the presence of the Incucyte® MMP Orange Dye to monitor compound effects on mitochondrial membrane potential over time (A).  Histograms of mean fluorescence intensity for control and drug treated wells at 0 and 40 hr highlight compound-induced changes in mitochondrial polarization (B). Label-free cell counting was performed using Incucyte® Cell-by-Cell Analysis Software (C). HD phase/fluorescent images acquired at 6 hr (Vehicle, FCCP, Oligomycin) or 40 hr (Camptothecin)(D). 

Monitor morphological changes and multiplex with cell health reagents

The Incucyte® MMP Orange Reagent Kit can be multiplexed with Incucyte® Caspase 3/7, Annexin V, or Cytotox Dyes to quantify apoptosis or cytotoxicity in addition to visualizing changes in cell morphology over time.

Figure 2. Multiplex mitochondrial membrane potential measurements with cell health readouts. HeLa cells were treated with the protein kinase inhibitor Staurosporine (SSP) in the presence of the Incucyte® MMP Orange and Cytotox NIR Dyes to evaluate compound effects on mitochondrial membrane potential and cytotoxicity in tandem (A). Concentration-response curves for both MMP and Cytotox NIR assays are shown (24 hr data, B). Representative HD phase + fluorescent images of Control, 0.3 µM SSP, and 3 µM SSP treated wells (24 hr timepoint, C).

Ordering Information

Technical Resources

Literature and Documentation

Product Guide – Incucyte® MMP Orange Reagent Kit

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Incucyte® Reagents, Consumables and Software

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