|Phototoxicity of the fluorescent membrane dyes PKH2 and PKH26 on the human hematopoietic KG1a progenitor cell line.
|Year of Publication
|D.J. Oh; G.M. Lee; K. Francis; B.Ø. Palsson
|PLoS Comput Biol
|BACKGROUND: The phototoxic effects of the well-known fluorescent membrane dyes PKH2 and PKH26 have been unknown, although their use in cell tracking experiments has increased dramatically. To eliminate the phototoxicity-induced alteration in cell function and morphology, it is essential to examine the suspicious phototoxicity of these dyes. METHODS: Chemical and phototoxic effects of PKH dyes on the human hematopoietic KG1a cell line were examined. To minimize phototoxicity in long-term cell tracking experiments lasting up to 18 h with a fluorescence microscope system, time-lapse monitoring with different time intervals and exposure times was introduced. RESULTS: There were no significant effects of the two PKH dyes on cell viability and growth when using dye concentrations up to 5 microM. However, when stained cells were exposed to excitation light, cell viability decreased dramatically, showing the phototoxicity of the PKH dyes. More than 60% of cells stained with 5 microM PKH26 died after 5 min of continuous light exposure. The phototoxic effect was more extensive in cells stained with higher concentrations of the dyes. CONCLUSIONS: We present guidelines for the optimal use of these dyes by using a defined hardware configuration.