Millipore Sigma Vibrant Logo
Attention: We have moved. EMD Millipore products are no longer available for purchase on More

Cell Migration and Cell Invasion Research

Request Information

Cell migration graphic.
Cell migration is fundamental to normal biological processes, including embryonic development, angiogenesis, wound healing, immune response, and inflammation. Many researchers studying cell migration employ a qualitative scratch assay and/or the more quantitative Boyden Chamber technique. Two forms of cell migration that can be studied using Boyden Chambers are chemotaxis and haptotaxis.

Chemotaxis describes cell migration in response to extracellular chemical signals. Chemotaxis assays are ideal for assessing the effects of pharmacological compounds on the motility of tumor cells, for example, and for analyzing the migratory capacity of multiple cell lines in parallel.

Haptotaxis describes cell migration towards an immobilized extracellular matrix (ECM) protein gradient such as vitronectin, fibronectin, or collagen coated on the bottom of the Boyden Chamber insert.

QCM™ Chemotaxis Cell Migration Assay (96-well, fluorometric)

QCM Chemotaxis Cell Migration Assay
Human fibrosarcoma HT-1080 chemotaxis toward 10% fetal bovine serum (FBS) was measured in the presence or absence of cytochalasin D, an inhibitor of actin polymerization. Note that cytochalasin D inhibits cell migration towards chemoattractant FBS. Assayed at multiple time intervals.

The chemotaxis cell migration assay measures directional cell movement in response to chemical concentration gradients. The kit does not require cell labeling, scraping, washing or counting. The 96-well insert and homogenous fluorescence detection format allows quantitative comparison of multiple samples and is especially useful for large scale screening of pharmacological agents. While multiple pore sizes are available, the 8 µm pore size of this assay's Boyden chambers is appropriate for migration studies of most cell types, but supports optimal migration for most epithelial and fibroblast cells.

QCM Endothelial Cell Migration Assay (24-well, fluorometric)
: QCM Endothelial Cell Migration Assay
Migration assay using HUVECs plated on chambers coated with bovine serum albumin (BSA) or fibronectin (FN). Fetal bovine serum functions as an effective chemoattractant, stimulating cell migration on FN but not on BSA.
Angiogenesis, the formation of blood vessels, results from migration of endothelial cells and is regulated by ECM components, angiogenic, and anti-angiogenic factors. The endothelial cell migration assay provides a quick and efficient system to study a compound’s ability to induce or inhibit endothelial cell migration. This versatile assay permits counting of individual migratory cells, and more importantly, allows for quantitative analysis by optical density (OD) using a standard microplate reader.
  • How to select the appropriate pore size for your cells
    1. 3 μm pore size is appropriate for leukocyte or lymphocyte migration. 
    2. 5 µm pore size is appropriate for a subset of fibroblast cells or cancer cells such as NIH-3T3 and MDA-MAB 231 cells. Also suitable for monocytes and macrophages. 
    3. 8 μm pore size is appropriate for most cell types. This pore size supports optimal migration for most epithelial and fibroblast cells. Note - the 8 μm pore size is not appropriate for lymphocyte migration experiments. 

    Click here to match your cell type to its suitable assay pore size.