Calcium transients using the FDSS/µCELL System

Ncardia's Calcium Transients expertise provides cardiac safety assessment by monitoring spontaneous Ca2+ transients in human iPSC-derived cardiomyocytes. The FDSS/µCell instrument enables the detection of acute and long-term effects on the electrophysiology of cardiomyocytes at a high-throughput (96- and 384-well plate formats), so we can help you expedite decision making at early stages of preclinical drug development.

Case studies were performed to assess the acute effects of well-known cardioactive compounds in Pluricyte Cardiomyocytes calcium transients using the FDSS/µCELL kinetic plate reader. Effects were determined to analyze various parameters, including peak frequency, peak amplitudes, peak slopes, and average peak width duration.

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Drug safety assessment using hiPSC-derived cardiomyocytes in combination with the FDSS/µCELL System

The FDSS/µCell instrument measures real-time changes in fluorescent calcium transients at high temporal resolution in 96- and 384-well plate formats. It identifies compounds that directly or indirectly affect calcium transients and cardiomyocyte beating activity, making this assay service extremely valuable for the evaluation of acute cardiotoxic effects of compounds at early stages of drug discovery.

For this application note, Pluricyte Cardiomyocytes were cultured on clear bottom 96-well plates. After incubation, the cardiomyocytes were treated with a set of pre-diluted cardioactive compounds. Acute effects on the fluorescent calcium transients were directly measured.

The results displayed below were obtained directly upon compound addition. Blocking of the hERG channel by 100 nM E4031 resulted in arrhythmic-like events (top right panel). By blocking L-type calcium channels, high concentrations of diltiazem and nifedipine reduced the fluorescent calcium transient peak amplitudes, eventually leading to complete diminishing of the signal (middle panels). The calcium channel agonist, Bay K 8644, caused increased peak amplitudes and increased peak widths (lower left panel). Treatment of cardiomyocytes with the β-adrenergic receptor agonist, isoproterenol, led to an increased peak frequency, decreased peak width, and increased peak amplitude (lower right panel).


This application note shows how we can assess the effects of a set of cardioactive compounds on calcium transients using the FDSS/µCell system. The high-throughput format of this platform makes this assay exceptionally well-suited for screening potential cardiotoxic effects of novel drug candidates at early stages of drug discovery.

Through our >10 years of expertise, our Calcium Transient assay services can support your Drug Discovery projects, providing you with detailed analyses to study the effects of your compounds. Results are highly relevant for studying cardiac safety or efficacy profile of compounds through several stages of your drug development projects.

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