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Firefly luciferin, beetle luciferin, synthetic luciferin
Catalog No. Product Name Size List Price (US$) Quantity
MB000102-R70170 D-Luciferin Potassium Salt 1 g 175.00
MB000102-R70170 D-Luciferin Potassium Salt 10 g 1599.00

MB000102-R70170 (or MB102): D-Luciferin, Potassium Salt

CAS No.: 115144-35-9
Molecular Formula: C11H7N2O3S2.K
Molecular Weight: 318.42
Purity >99% (chemical and optical purity)

Definition of the luciferin luciferase system in vivo and in vitro: what is D-luciferin, how does the system work, and what is D-luciferin used for?

Luciferin is the small molecule substrate for the enzyme Luciferase producing bioluminescence or light. There are many types of luciferin and analogs in nature or created by chemical synthesis. The substrate and enzyme are present in a variety of light emitting organisms including fireflies and beetles. The firefly luciferin is identical to the beetle luciferin.

The luciferin luciferase reaction mechanism is well known. Light can be generated by oxidation of D-luciferin but the reaction rate is extremely slow in absence of the enzyme and the cofactor ATP. The enzyme catalyzes the chemical reaction of its substrate to produce light. The other chiral form, L-luciferin, competitively inhibits the chemical reaction.

Luminometers and optical microscopes have been developed to detect light emitted from the two-step luciferase-catalyzed chemical reaction. The protein Luciferase can be transiently or stably expressed in cells and animals, mostly mice. With the luciferin luciferase ATP reagent, equipment, and genetic engineering, firefly luciferase and luciferin have been widely used in in vitro and in vivo reporter assays detecting gene expression and detecting the level of cellular ATP in cell viability assays or for kinase activity assays. The luciferin luciferase ATP assay kits are commercially available. The applications of firefly luciferase and D-luciferin including in vivo imaging are still expanding.

How to make D-Luciferin potassium salt? Although D-luciferin is a natural compound produced in fireflies and beetles, the cost of chemical synthesis is much cheaper than extraction of the biosynthesized chemical from insects. Our synthetic D-Luciferin potassium salt (cat no MB102) is purified to remove dehydroluciferin and L-Luciferin, competitive inhibitors of firefly luciferase. Water solubility of the chemical is great to make stock solution with high concentration.

Advertisement: After comparing the prices of synthetic D-luciferin potassium salt from a number of suppliers, you should know where to buy D-luciferin potassium salt: Syd Labs, Inc in Boston, USA. We offer the best price in the worldwide to reduce researchers' cost to purchase the chemical reagent. How much does our D-luciferin potassium salt cost? $175 for 1 gram, and $1599 for 10 g. The prices are even lower than other suppliers' D-luciferin for sale. Our low price does not hurt quality of our reagent.   

Preparation of D-luciferin stock solution and work solution:

To prepare solution for in vitro bioluminescent assay: Make a 200x D-luciferin stock solution (30 mg/ml) in sterile deionized water. Mix gently by inversion until the chemical is completely dissolved. Make a D-Luciferin working solution (150 ug/ml final concentration) in pre-warmed culture medium.

To prepare solution for in vivo imaging: Make a D-luciferin stock solution (15 mg/ml) in DPBS. Mix gently by inversion until the compound is completely dissolved. Filter sterilize the solution through a 0.2 um filter. Inject animals at 10 ul/g of body weight or 1.5 mg D-luciferin for a 10 g mouse.

pH stability of D-luciferin potassium salt: If pH>6.3, it may be converted to L-luciferin through a slow racemization.

Storage of D-luciferin potassium salt in powder and solution: It may form dehydroluciferin in the presence of ultraviolet light and/or moisture. The lyophilized powder should be stored in the dark at -20°C. For in vivo and in vitro use, the stock solution after reconstitution with PBS or deionized water can be stored at 4°C with protection from light for 3 weeks, and at -20°C for 3 months. 

Please contact us if you need protocol, datasheet, or SDS of D-luciferin potassium salt.

Quality of our D-luciferin potassium salt has been proven by a number of publications citing our product.


1. "D-luciferin potassium salt (catalogue #MB102, Syd Labs Inc., Natick, MA) was resuspended in phosphate-buffered saline (PBS) to a final concentration of 20 mg/ml. Mice were dosed with 200 μL luciferin substrate intraperitoneally and waited for 10 minutes to allow for distribution of substrate prior to image acquisition." Interleukin-17 promotes metastasis in an immunocompetent orthotopic mouse model of prostate cancer.  David Cunningham, Qiuyang Zhang, Sen Liu, Keshab R Parajuli, Qiang Nie, Lin Ma, Allen Zhang, Zhenbang Chen, Zongbing You. Am J Clin Exp Urol. 2018; 6(3): 114–122.

2. "To monitor the condition of brain metastasis in the mice, bioluminescent imaging (Caliper Life Sciences, Waltham, MA, USA) was used. For this, mice were injected with D-luciferin potassium salt (SYD Labs, Inc., Natick, MA, USA) at a dose of 150 mg/kg i.p., anesthetized by inhalant isoflurane 1–5% in oxygen, and then placed into the Xenogen IVIS® spectrum imaging system (PerkinElmer, Boston, MA, USA) at 10 min after D-luciferin potassium salt injection." Cucurbitacin E inhibits the Yes‑associated protein signaling pathway and suppresses brain metastasis of human non‑small cell lung cancer in a murine model.   Hsu PC, Tian B, Yang YL, Wang YC, Liu S, Urisman A, Yang CT, Xu Z, Jablons DM, You L. Oncol Rep. 2019 Aug;42(2):697-707.

3. "BLI was performed using a hybrid optical/X-ray scanner (IVIS Lumina XRMS In Vivo Imaging System, PerkinElmer). Mice were anesthetized with isofluorane (2% in 100% oxygen) and received a 150 μL intraperitoneal injection of D-luciferin (30 mg/mL; Syd Labs, Inc., MA, USA), and BLI images were captured for up to 35 minutes after injection." Cellular MRI Reveals Altered Brain Arrest of Genetically Engineered Metastatic Breast Cancer Cells.  Parkins KM, Hamilton AM, Dubois VP, Wong SM, Foster PJ, Ronald JA. Contrast Media Mol Imaging. 2019 Jan 8;2019:6501231.

Wrong words that people use to search luciferin: luciferine, Luciferina, luciferins, luciferen, luceferin, luciferon, luciferion, liciferin, lucifirin, lucipherin, luciferrin, and more.

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