Matrix effect in tumor lysates – Does it affect your cytokine ELISA and multiplex analyses?

Camilla Stavnsbjerg, Jennifer Solgaard Jørgensen, Trine Bjørnbo Engel, Anja Brus, Lars Ringgaard, Anders Elias Hansen, Andreas Kjaer, Thomas Lars Andresen*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

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Quantification of cytokines in cancerous tissue is important for understanding basic tumor biology and for deciphering anti-cancer mechanisms in drug development. Cytokine measurements on protein-level are often done by immunoassays such as enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISAs) and multiplex assays. However, immunoassays are prone to interference due to the presence of perturbing factors. The sum of these factors is known as the matrix effect, which results in a deviation of the measured cytokine concentration from the actual concentration. In this study, we demonstrated that matrix effects are present in tumor lysates from 11 different syngeneic murine tumors and that it can greatly affect cytokine measurements in ELISAs and multiplex assays. Dilution of tumor lysates and careful selection of lysis buffer components may decrease matrix effects. However, matrix effects are still present, and care should be taken when analyzing cytokine measurements of tumor lysates.

Original languageEnglish
Article number113177
JournalJournal of Immunological Methods
Number of pages4
Publication statusPublished - 2022


  • Cytokine
  • Dilution linearity
  • Immunoassay
  • Matrix effect
  • Tumor


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