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PMA Dye

PMA (propidium monoazide) is a high affinity photoreactive DNA binding dye invented by scientists at Biotium for viability PCR of bacteria and other microorganisms.

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Product Description

PMA (propidium monoazide) is a high-affinity photoreactive DNA binding dye invented by scientists at Biotium for viability PCR of bacteria and other organisms. The dye is weakly fluorescent by itself but becomes more fluorescent after binding to nucleic acids. It preferentially binds to dsDNA with high affinity. Upon photolysis, the dye covalently reacts with DNA, thus resulting in permanent DNA modification. The dye is cell membrane-impermeable, and thus can be selectively used to modify only exposed DNA from dead cells while leaving DNA from viable cells intact. This feature makes the dye highly useful in the selective detection of viable pathogenic cells by quantitative real-time PCR in the presence dead cells whose DNA has been PMA-modified and thus can not be amplified.

Since Biotium first developed PMA dye, there have been numerous publications on the use of the dye in pathogenic bacterial detection related to food and water safety, medical diagnosis and biodefense. Check the Downloads section to view the PMA&PMaxx™ Reference List and the PMA&PMAxx™ Validated Bacterial Strains List. PMA dye is also available in H2O (40019), a convenient ready-to-use format.

For photoactivation of PMA dye, we recommend our PMA-Lite™ LED Photolysis Device for microcentrifuge tubes, or the Glo-Plate Blue™ LED Illuminator for larger tubes or 96-well plates.

PMA Molecular Information:

  • Molecular weight: 511
  • Abs = 464 nm (before photolysis)
  • Abs/Em = 510/610 nm (following photolysis and covalent attachment to DNA/RNA)
  • Dark red solid soluble in water
  • Store at 4°C and protect from light at all times

Related Products

PMAxx™ Dye for Viability PCR

PMAxx™ (40069) is a new and improved dye for viability PCR. It functions in a manner very similar to PMA, but has much greater activity and ability to distinguish between live and dead bacteria. PMAxx™ can be used as a replacement for PMA in any bacterial viability-PCR assay. We recommend that customers new to viability PCR try PMAxx™ instead of PMA, for improved detection of viable bacteria.

PMA Enhancer for Gram-Negative Bacteria

For viability PCR of gram-negative bacteria we highly recommend using PMA Enhancer (31038) in conjunction with PMA. PMA Enhancer for Gram Negative Bacteria was designed to improve PMA-mediated discrimination between live and dead gram-negative bacteria. When a sequence from a gram-negative bacteria is amplified by PCR, samples pre-treated with Enhancer show a decrease in the signal from dead cells, with no change in the signal from live cells.

Viability PCR Kits

To more easily get started with viability PCR, learn about our customizable Viability PCR Starter Kits. You choose which viability PCR dye you prefer, and whether or not you need Enhancer for gram-negative bacteria. All of the starter kits come with an EvaGreen® qPCR master mix and a detail protocol to get you started.

Biotium also provides strain-specific PMA Real-Time PCR Bacterial Viability Kits with validated primers for selected pathogens: M. tuberculosis, S. aureus, MRSA, Salmonella, E. coli, E. coli O157:H7, Legionella and Listeria. These kits provide everything that you need for the selective detection of your favorite species of live bacteria by real-time PCR.

 

References

Nocker, A., Cheung, C.Y., and Kamper, A.K. (2006). Comparison of propidium monoazide with ethidium monoazide for differentiation of live vs. dead bacteria by selective removal of DNA from dead cells. J. Microbio Meth. 67(2), 310-320.

See a full list of PMA & PMAxx™ References.

 

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Support & Faq

PMA and PMAxx™ for viability PCR

Viability PCR originally used EMA (ethidium monoazide) to inactivate dead cell DNA. Biotium developed PMA (propidium monoazide) in collaboration with investigators at Montana State University (Nocker et al. 2006). PMA is more selective for dead cells than EMA, and became widely used for selective detection of viable microbes and viruses. PMAxx™ is Biotium’s newest viability PCR dye, designed to be more effective than PMA at eliminating PCR amplification of dead cell DNA. Therefore it provides the best discrimination between live and dead bacteria.

Learn more about PMA and PMAxx™ for viability PCR.

Category: PMA and PMAxx™ for viability PCR

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Biotium offers the PMA-Lite™ LED Photolysis Device for light-induced cross-linking of PMAxx™ and PMA to dsDNA. The PMA-Lite™ is designed for samples in microcentrifuge tubes. We also offer the Glo-Plate™ Blue LED Illuminator for photoactivation of larger tubes, 96-well plates, or other plate formats.

Commercial halogen lamps (>600 W) for home use have been employed for photoactivating PMA in some publications, though results have not been consistent due to inevitable variation in the set-up configurations. If you decide to use a halogen lamp, we recommend that you lay tubes on a block of ice set 20 cm from the light source, on a rocking platform to ensure continuous mixing. Set the lamp so that the light source is pointing directly downward onto the samples (up to 45° downward slant is OK). Expose samples to light for 5-15 min.

Category: PMA and PMAxx™ for viability PCR

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The LEDs in PMA-Lite have brightness of 600-800 millicandela (mcd). There are three LEDs next to each tube (one bottom, two side) and the wavelength is 465-475 nm.

Category: PMA and PMAxx™ for viability PCR

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Shipping & Handling Disclaimer: Shipping and handling methods are calculated based on item temperature storage recommendation. Large, multi-item orders may be assessed additional fees. Shipping to Puerto Rico may be assessed additional fees. A Biotium customer service representative will contact you if additional fees are required. For expedited shipping, please request in the Order Notes section of the checkout page. Please note that products with recommended storage at 4°C or -20°C may ship at ambient temperature. This will not affect product performance. When you receive the product, place it under the recommended storage conditions.