Microspheres and Nanocrystals
Industry-leading particles portfolio
Thermo Fisher Scientific, through its legacy IDC, Dynal, Molecular Probes, and Quantum Dot Corporation businesses, is an industry-leading provider of microspheres and nanocrystals for commercial use, with more than 35 years of expertise. We work closely with diagnostic, pharmaceutical, and research tool companies to provide reagents for use in your manufacturing processes, to include in your products for resale, or for use in your contract research, diagnostic, or other commercial services.
In addition to offering a broad portfolio of off-the-shelf products, we can design, develop, and manufacture particles with customized surfaces, densities, diameters, and optical properties. We can also conjugate these particles to your chosen antibodies, nucleic acids, or other biomolecules, and can provide you with customized formulations and special packaging. We have the knowledge and experience to help you identify the best particle to match your product, instrument, and application requirements. Our particles can be manufactured under a variety of standards, including ISO 9001:2000, ISO 13485:2003, and 21 CFR part 820 US QSR, depending on your regulatory requirements and product specifications.
Key applications for particles include:
- Fluorescent, colored, or luminescent labels for detection (e.g., antibody or nucleic acid conjugates)
- Capture reagents for lateral flow immunoassays
- Calibrators for flow cytometry, microarray analysis, microscopy, automated imaging, and other instruments or assays
- Platform for monitoring coagulation by light scattering
- Surfaces for immunoprecipitation
- Tracers for fluid flow (including blood flow) or air flow
- Tools for automated sample preparation
We are always interested in learning about new applications, and will be glad to advise you regarding the best combination of products and technologies to meet your needs.
In addition to microspheres and nanocrystals, we also are a leading provider of magnetic particles.
White, unstained beads
Our proprietary microspheres are available with a wide range of surface chemistries and other properties. Our Dynospheres® microspheres are monodisperse, unstained polystyrene particles, ranging in size from about 1 μm to about 30 μm in diameter. Our IDC microspheres are ultraclean, surfactant-free polystyrene particles that range in diameter from about 20 nm to about 5 μm.
Learn More about IDC microspheres ›
All of these particles can be customized with respect to diameter, density (very small microspheres, below 1 μm in diameter, can be designed to remain in suspension indefinitely), surface charge density, type of surface group, and other properties. They can also be provided as conjugates of proteins and other ligands, and can include customized spacers such as dextrans, polyethylene glycol, or other linkers.
Colored, Luminescent, and Fluorescent Stained Beads
All of these microspheres can also be stained to your specifications with a number of different dyes:
- We can provide blue, yellow, red, green, and black colored beads.
- Our luminescent beads are stained with platinum and terbium or other metal chelates for time-resolved assays, to reduce background signals.
- We offer a broad range of Molecular Probes® fluorescent particles, including our FluoSpheres® microspheres, each containing an individual fluorescent dye to meet your desired combination of excitation and emission wavelength maxima, intensity, and CV.
- Our MultiSpeck™ and TetraSpeck™ microspheres contain multiple fluorescent dyes, each exciting and emitting at distinct wavelengths in the same bead, which can be used to calibrate multiplexed imaging assays.
- Our FocalCheck™ particles are stained with concentric rings of fluorescent dye, allowing instrument and assay calibration in three dimensions.
- Our patented TransFluoSpheres® technology permits us to combine multiple fluorescent dyes in a single bead under circumstances in which energy transfer results in a single excitation wavelength and any desired emission wavelength.
Learn More about our Fluorescent Microspheres › product offering
Thermo Fisher holds the largest and most comprehensive intellectual property estate in the world related to fluorescent semiconductor material–based nanocrystals (quantum dots), with an exclusive position related to the use of fluorescent nanocrystals in life science applications. Our Qdot® nanocrystals set the standard in the industry for brightness, photostability, and efficacy for use in biological applications. These particles have been used for cell and tissue imaging, immunocytochemistry, fluorescence in situ hybridization, flow cytometry, western blotting, small animal in vivo imaging, stem cell tracing, and more.
- Learn more about our Qdot® Nanocrystals portfolio.
We can also provide you with a range of colloidal gold and nanogold particles and their conjugates. Please contact us to learn more about obtaining rights to use these products and technologies. We welcome inquiries for resale or other commercial uses at firstname.lastname@example.org.