Multiplex Cell Contamination Test

The offered service is designed to detect 28 potential cell culture contamination such as

  • Mycoplasma (Identification of 14 specific strains: M. arginini, M. fermentans, M. orale, M. hyorhinis, M. hominis, M. genitalium, M. salivarium, M. synoviae, M. pirum, M. gallisepticum, M. pneumoniae, M. yeatsii, Spiroplasma citri and Acholeplasma laidlawii)
  • Squirrel Monkey Retrovirus (SMRV) and Epstein-Barr virus (EBV)
  • Cross-contamination with cells of following origin:
    • Human, Monkey, Mouse, Rat, Chinese hamster, Syrian hamster, Dog, Cat, Rabbit, Guinea pig, Pig, Drosophila

Detection of more than 100 additional Mycoplasma strains by proprietary universal probes. This service detects all Mollicutes mentioned in the European Pharmacopoeia 2.6.7. Mycoplasma specification enables tracing of Mycoplasma contamination sources.


Test specifications

Detection of contaminations is done with specific primer sequences in a multiplex PCR targeting viral, bacterial and cellular genome regions, respectively, and subsequent hybridisation using specific oligonucleotide probes (licensed from the DKFZ, patent pending). Even low levels of contamination are detected before they become more widespread. An internal DNA quality control as well as several positive and negative PCR controls are warranting a service at highest standards.


To be done by the user

  • Cell line lysate preparation according to the lysate protocol
    • required amount: >15µL
    • tubes: SafeLock tubes
  • Complete the Quick Order form (customers receive a confirmation Email after submission)
  • Label sample tubes with:
    • the specific sample name as provided in the confirmation Email
  • Ship samples in a padded envelope WITH a copy of the confirmation Email to:

Multiplexion, c/o DKFZ, Dept. F020, INF 242, D-69120 Heidelberg, Germany


To be done by Multiplexion

  • Multiplex PCR-based amplification of contaminants
  • Detection of PCR products by specific oligonucleotide probes
  • Transfer of result report to customer by Email (the report can be used as certificate for granting agencies and journals)


Turnaround Time

Samples submitted are run in even calendar weeks, with results emailed usually by end of the week.

  • Customers from Heidelberg should drop off samples in the building INF242 between 10AM and 12AM on Monday for inclusion in that week's processing schedule.
  • External customers should ship samples to the lab to be received by 12AM Monday for inclusion in that week's processing schedule. Samples received after 12AM Monday through Friday of any given week will be held and processed the following testing week.


How to cite the service?

For Grant and Paper Submissions


What to do with contaminated cell lines?

  • Different contaminations require different actions. An overview can be found here.
  • You may use the following protocol to eliminate Mycoplasma from your precious cell lines. The protocol was kindly provided by U. Koch (DKFZ, Heidelberg).
  • Problems with contaminations? Our check list for sterile work may help.


Please note: This service is FOR RESEARCH USE ONLY. Do not use in diagnostic procedures.




Summer break

No testing will be performed in week 26 of 2015.

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Special Offer for First Time Users

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