MicroScale Thermophoresis

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MicroScale Thermophoresis – An Overview

MicroScale Thermophoresis (MST) is a novel method that enables the quantitative analysis of molecular interactions in solution on the microliter scale with high sensitivity. The technique is based on the movement of molecules in temperature gradients, a physical effect called thermophoresis. Usually a depletion or accumulation of molecules in the area of elevated temperature is observed (see picture below).

Thermophoresis principle

This directed movement (thermophoresis) of molecules depends on the molecular size, charge, and hydration shell. Binding of a ligand to a target molecule leads to the change of at least one of these parameters and therefore to an altered thermophoresis of the complex compared to the single molecules (see picture below).

Thermophoresis principle 2

The MicroScale Thermophoresis monitors the thermophoresis of a target molecule supplied with different amounts of ligand and uses the information to quantify binding parameters of the molecular interaction.  Therefore the MicroScale Thermophoresis can be used for the analysis of any kind of molecular interaction or modification of small molecules, proteins, peptides, DNA, sugars, or molecular complexes.