GSBS Student Publications


Current in vitro kinase assay technologies: the quest for a universal format

UMMS Affiliation

Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences; Abbott Laboratories; Department of Pharmacology



Document Type


Medical Subject Headings

Animals; Antibodies; Drug Evaluation, Preclinical; Enzyme Inhibitors; Fluorescence; Humans; Immunochemistry; Luminescence; Phosphotransferases; Radiometry


Life Sciences | Medicine and Health Sciences


The rapidly growing interest in kinases as drug targets has prompted the development of many kinase assay technologies. These technologies can be grouped into three categories: radiometric assays, phospho-antibody-dependent fluorescence/luminescence assays, and phospho-antibody-independent fluorescence/luminescence assays. This article will review some of the major kinase assay technologies on the market, with particular emphasis on the newest systems. We will describe the physical principles, the practical advantages and drawbacks, and the potential applications of these technologies in kinase drug discovery. Most of these technologies are suitable for HTS, but only a few can be utilized for kinetic and mechanistic studies. Significant progress towards development of generic assays, free of radioisotopes and custom reagents such as phospho-specific antibodies, has been made in recent years. However, due to various limitations of each format, none of these generic assay technologies can yet claim to be truly universal. Several factors, including the intended applications, cost, timeline, expertise, familiarity, and comfort level, should be considered prior to pursuing a particular kinase assay technology.

Rights and Permissions

Citation: Curr Drug Discov Technol. 2008 Mar;5(1):59-69.

Related Resources

Link to Article in PubMed

Journal Title

Current drug discovery technologies

PubMed ID