Apoptosis, or programmed cell death, refers to a series of biochemical changes in the cell leading to distinct morphological changes that can be assessed using fluorescent probes or contrast-enhancing microscopy modes such as phase contrast. Examples of fluorescent probes include those that target phosphatidylserine which becomes exposed to extracellular reagents in early stage apoptosis (i.e. pSIVA-IANBD), fluorometric substrates of or antibodies to caspases (i.e. Caspase 3/7) that generate fluorescence with caspase activation, or probes that measure chromatin condensation. Cytation™ and Lionheart™ FX both have the ability to measure apoptosis through the use of fluorescent probes or by label-free methods relying on phase contrast microscopy.
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