Research published in Nature Chemical Biology demonstrates a new tool for scientists studying conditions such as autism and Alzheimer’s disease. Promega R&D scientists, alongside co-authors from Stanford Medicine, have published a paper describing the development of cephalofurimazine, a novel substrate for NanoLuc® Luciferase that enables researchers to study the brain using bioluminescence imaging. The study marks a major technological advance for research on complex neurological diseases and potential treatments.

“This is going to be a very important tool for scientists studying both developmental and degenerative conditions in the brain,” says Thomas Kirkland, Senior Scientific Investigator at Promega. “Cephalofurimazine will allow us to bridge the gap between cell models and animal models.”

Bioluminescence imaging allows scientists to non-invasively study gene expression, cell location and molecular events in live animals. A single specimen can be continuously studied over the course of its life, with minimal perturbation to its natural anatomy and physiology. This is a critical technique for studying the progression of developmental and degenerative diseases, and for characterizing the effects of potential treatments within the body.

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