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A4liveCell Blog#3: “Deciphering the inside cell´s story by CYTOCHECK SPAchip®!

Welcome to A4liveCell Blog #3!

SPAchip® technology enables the study of calcium signaling in receptor pharmacology.

Calcium ions (Ca2+) are one of the most important signal transducers in cells, hence intracellular levels must be tightly regulated since prolonged high levels can lead to cell death. Since extracellular calcium concentration is usually 20,000-fold higher than intracellular levels (i.e. 1-2 mM cf. 100 nM), cells have developed several mechanisms to keep its homeostasis.

Calcium ions can get into the cytosol from the extracellular space through ion channels or be pumped from the endoplasmic reticulum (ER). This organelle stores these ions in its lumen by specialized buffer molecules which will release calcium whenever needed and correctly signaled.

Advantages of SPAchip® Over Traditional Methods

  • Compatibility with Other Assays: It can be used alongside other cell assays and markers due to its minimal interference, appearing only as a small fluorescence spot within the cytosol.
  • Reliability and Non-Toxicity: The SPAchip® is designed to be non-toxic and does not disturb other cellular functions, making it suitable for long-term studies.
  • Versatility in Application: It is applicable across a wide variety of cell cultures, from 2D monolayers to 3D cell cultures and even in suspension cells.
  • Real-Time Kinetic Analysis: SPAchip® facilitates real-time monitoring and multiple assessments within the same experiment, enhancing the depth and relevance of the data obtained.

By enabling detailed, real-time observation of calcium signaling, SPAchip® not only increases the efficiency and effectiveness of research but also reduces costs and time. Its application spans basic research to more complex pharmacological studies, providing insights into receptor functions and their implications in various diseases.

SPAchip® stands out as a significant leap forward in the study of cellular signaling, offering a clearer picture of intracellular mechanisms and advancing our overall knowledge in receptor pharmacology. Its continued development and integration into research protocols promise even greater discoveries in the future.

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