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Beantown Biotech is a Boston's local Contract Research Organization (CRO) that provides a comprehensive set of services designed to accelerate the discovery and development of new drugs. Our expertise in discovery biology includes assay development and screening utilizing a wide variety of biophysical, biochemical and cell-based assays. Our team of highly experienced scientists will work closely with you to ensure optimal outcome for your research projects.

Nano-Glo HiBiT lytic detection

HiBiT is a protein-tagging and detection method  that relates abundance of target directly to luminescent signal. When detection reagent is added to live cells, he high-affinity interaction between LgBiT Protein and HiBiT tag reconstitutes the luminescent NanoBiT® enzyme. This results in a highly quantitative assay with fewer processing steps compared to standard antibody-based detection methods.


The CellTiter-Glo® Luminescent Cell Viability Assay is a homogeneous method of determining the number of viable cells in culture based on quantitation of the ATP present (an indicator of metabolically active cells). The CellTiter-Glo® Assay is designed for use in multiwell formats, making it ideal for automated high-throughput screening (HTS), cell proliferation and cytotoxicity assays.

NanoBRET target engagement

NanoBRET™ technology offers a sensitive, specific method to measure the interaction of small-molecule drugs with their target protein in live cells. With the NanoBRET™ Target Engagement Assay, you can quantitate compound affinity (how tightly it binds to a protein) target protein occupancy (how much compound binds to a protein) and assess how long a compound binds to the target protein (its residence time) under physiological conditions in live cells.

Meso Scale Discovery Immunoassay (MSD)

Immunoassays are a staple in the field of drug discovery. MSD makes use of electrochemiluminescence via SULFO-TAG technology to greatly improve on the sensitivity of traditional staple immunoassays. This technology will allow you to confidently quantify ultra-low levels of analyte in a sample where other methods fail to do so.

Real-Time PCR

Real-Time PCR, also referred to as Quantitative PCR (or qPCR) is a precise, efficient and rapid method for nucleic acid detection in various biological samples. In real-time PCR, the accumulation of amplification product is measured as the reaction progresses, in real time, with product quantification after each cycle. real-time PCR allows you to determine the initial number of copies of template DNA (the amplification target sequence) with accuracy and high sensitivity over a wide dynamic range. 


HTRF (Homogeneous Time Resolved Fluorescence) is the most frequently used generic assay technology to measure analytes in a homogenous format, which is the ideal platform used for drug target studies in high-throughput screening (HTS).

Incucyte S3 (Sartorius)

The Incucyte S3 offers a variety of  useful applications in the way of cell/tissue imaging. Set up in a working incubator, this instrument allows you to utilize live cells for your experimentation - from simple cell counting to phagocytosis assays and lentiviral transduction analyses. The Incucyte also provides traditional, fixed cell/tissue staining and imaging capabilities.

High Content Imaging

High Content Imaging (HCI) involves measuring changes in cell phenotype by labeling proteins with fluorescent tags. It is possible to measure several different cell components in parallel by using fluorescent tags with different absorption and emission wavelengths. HCI is able to detect changes at a subcellular level (e.g., cytoplasm vs. mucleus vs. other organelles). Beantown Biotech utilizes a PerkinElmer Operetta for High Content Imaging.


Alpha technology is a bead-based method of detection that is becoming more common in drug discovery. The biggest appeal is that Alpha assays are homogenous and do not require any wash steps which can make a perfect function assay. Alpha technology uses two different beads, a Donor and an Acceptor. Once the beads are close in proximity (about 200 nm) they produce a luminescent/fluorescent signal. This ultimately causes light to be released and detected, creating a quantitative signal that is proportionally related to the amount of analyte in a sample.

Jess Automated Western 

Protein Simple’s Jess Automated Western machinery allows us to profile up to 24 samples at once via Western Blot in as few as 3 hours. This allows for high-throughput antibody detection assays that bypass the several-hour/overnight incubations and manual washing steps that slow the traditional Western Blot protocol down considerably.

Cyquant ® Cell Proliferation Assay

An alternative to CTG, Cyquant serves as a viability assay in its own manner. Rather than producing luminescence through ATP presence and relating this signal to number of living cells, Cyquant ® is an intercalating dye that permeates intact cell membranes and produces a fluorescent signal that can be read on one of our plate readers.

Flow Cytometry

Various aspects of cells and cellular processes can be analyzed and characterized with Flow Cytometry. Analysis can include the identification of cell surface markers and intracellular proteins associated with disease states or therapeutic targets. It enables rapid analysis of cellular responses to compounds, including changes in viability, proliferation, apoptosis, and protein expression. Researchers can analyze drug-induced changes in cell cycle progression, cell signaling pathways, immune cell function, and biomarker expression to elucidate the mechanism of action and optimize drug dosing regimens. Flow cytometry can also enable the assessment of compound toxicity by monitoring cellular responses such as apoptosis, necrosis, DNA damage, and mitochondrial dysfunction.

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