AAT Bioquest

Can propidium iodide be used in live cell imaging?

Posted July 24, 2023


Propidium iodide cannot be used in live cell imaging as it is impermeant to live cell membranes. The dye is utilized to detect only dead cells in a given population, in order to assess cell viability and measure DNA content. However, a study in recent years was carried out by Paula Szalai and Nikolai Engedal in which PI was used for real-time cell death assessment by automated imaging using the IncuCyte ZOOM from Essen Bioscience system.

Additional resources

Measuring Cell Death by Propidium Iodide Uptake and Flow Cytometry

Apoptosis and Necrosis

Cell Viability Assays

Propidium iodide *1 mg/mL aqueous solution*