ProtocolCell Biology

Analysis of Signaling Events by Dynamic Phosphoflow Cytometry

Science Signaling  01 Sep 2009:
Vol. 2, Issue 86, pp. pl3
DOI: 10.1126/scisignal.286pl3

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Abstract

Many proteins involved in cell signaling are phosphorylated. To determine the phosphorylation status of these signaling molecules at the single-cell level, we present a protocol for using state-specific antibodies to detect target phosphoproteins with fluorescence measurements by flow cytometry. To improve the signal intensity, a sandwich-labeling method for the analysis of signaling proteins is performed. By comparing the phosphorylation state of proteins in the presence and absence of sodium pervanadate, a nonspecific tyrosine phosphatase inhibitor, we determined the relative amount of tyrosine-phosphorylated protein in the samples, which reflects the activity of the signaling pathway. This dynamic approach, in combination with the signal amplification through a sandwich-labeling method, produces accurate and reproducible measurement of the activity of signaling pathways.

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