Cell membrane stains

Useful for tissue sections, in vivo neurons, fixed tissue sections and cultured cells, these lipophilic neuronal tracers are used in both anterograde and retrograde transport studies.


Select cell membrane stains

Liophilic Tracers

  • Exogenous staining
  • Crystal and paste formulations for tissue staining
  • Will stain fixed tissue sections
  • Anterograde and retrograde transport

Carbocyanine dyes, such as DiI and its derivatives, label cell membranes without appreciably affecting cell viability and can be used for long-term studies. The dyes uniformly label neurons via lateral diffusion in the plasma membrane, which is supplemented by active dye transport processes in living tissues.

Crystal and paste preparations provide convenient options for loading tissues. Lipophilic tracers can be used to trace neuronal projections in fixed tissue sections.

 Lipophilic Tracers
Axons in the dorsonasal retina of a zebrafish embryo labeled with DiI, and nuclei counterstained with SYTOX® Green nucleic acid stain.

Selection Guides for Cell Membrane Staining Products

Properties

ReadoutLabels cell membranes and does not appreciably affect cell viability. The dyes uniformly label neurons via lateral diffusion in the plasma membrane, supplemented by active dye transport processes in living tissues. Crystal and paste preparations provide convenient loading optons for tissue sections.
Tissue sectionsYes
In vivo neuronsYes
Fixed tissue sectionsYes
Cultured cellsYes
Cell loadingIontophoresis, microinjection, or crystal/paste placement
Staining modeExogenous
Best forCell populations
TransportBidirectional
Photobleaching resistance2 stars
Synaptic transferNo
Gap junction transferNo
BibliographyCitations—DiICitations—DiDCitations—DiR

 

Selection Guide

  Standard
filter set(s)
Fluorophore/
conjugate
Ex/Em (nm) Fixable Format Cat. No.
"DiI" — DiIC18(3)RhodamineDiI449/565NoSolidD282
"DiI" — DiIC18(3), crystallineCrystalD3911
NeuroTrace® DiI Tissue-Labeling PastePasteN22880
Vybrant® DiI Cell-Labeling SolutionSolutionV22885
CellTracker™ CM-DiICM DiI449/565YesSolidC7001
NeuroTrace® CM-DiI Tissue-Labeling PastePasteN22883
Vybrant® CM-DiI Cell-Labeling SolutionSolutionV22888
"DiD" — DiIC18(5)Cy®5DiD644/665NoSolidD7757
"DiR" — DiIC18(7)Cy®5.5DiR750/780SolidD12731