Product overview

Name MTT
Description Dye commonly used for cell proliferation measurement
Biological description


MTT is a tetrazolium dye which is commonly used in cell proliferation or cell growth assays In living cells, MTT is converted by NAD(P)H-dependent cellular oxidoreductase enzymes to its insoluble formazan which is purple/dark blue.

Uses and Applications

The color intensity can be measured colormetrically (at 540 or 570 nM) which allows quantitation of cell viability and cell proliferation.

Alternative names Thiazolyl blue tetrazolium bromide
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Solubility & Handling

Storage instructions +4°C
Solubility overview Soluble in water (5 mg/ml)
Important This product is for RESEARCH USE ONLY and is not intended for therapeutic or diagnostic use. Not for human or veterinary use



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Chemical Data

Chemical name 3-(4,5-dimethyl-1,3-thiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyl-2H-tetrazol-3-ium bromide
Molecular Weight 414.32
Chemical structure MTT [298-93-1] Chemical Structure
Molecular Formula C18H16N5SBr
CAS Number 298-93-1
PubChem identifier 64965
SMILES CC1=C(C)SC([N+]2=NC(C4=CC=CC=C4)=NN2C3=CC=CC=C3)=N1.[Br-]
InChi InChI=1S/C18H16N5S.BrH/c1-13-14(2)24-18(19-13)23-21-17(15-9-5-3-6-10-15)20-22(23)16-11-7-4-8-12-16;/h3-12H,1-2H3;1H/q+1;/p-1
MDL number MFCD00011964

References for MTT

References are publications that support the biological activity of the product
  • A comparative study of colorimetric cell proliferation assays in immune cells

    Koyanagi M et al (2016) Cytotechnology 68(4) : 1489-98
  • Limitations of the 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyl-2H-tetrazolium bromide (MTT) assay when compared to three commonly used cell enumeration assays

    van Tonder A et al (2015) BMC Res Notes 8 : 47
  • Optimization of the tetrazolium dye (MTT) colorimetric assay for cellular growth and viability

    Sylvester PW (2011) Methods Mol Biol 716 : 157-68