Chemically activated luciferase gene expression (CALUX) cell bioassay analysis for the estimation of dioxin-like activity: Critical parameters of the CALUX procedure that impact assay results

Isabelle Windal, Michael S. Denison, Linda S. Birnbaum, Nathalie Van Wouwe, Willy Baeyens, Leo Goeyens

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

78 Scopus citations


The chemically activated luciferase gene expression (CALUX) in vitro cell bioassay is a bioanalytical tool that is increasingly being used by research and commercial laboratories for the screening and relative quantification of dioxins and dioxin-like compounds in sample extracts. Since CALUX analyses provide a biological response to all aryl hydrocarbon receptor active compounds present in a given sample extract containing a complex mixture of chemicals, interpretation of results is significantly more complex than of chemical analyses. Operators in the laboratory can adjust many parameters when performing CALUX analyses, and the applied procedure strongly affects the result and, hence, the interpretation of the results. This paper examines critical methodological parameters and aspects of the CALUX bioassay that can affect the quality and accuracy of the analyses. Moreover, the study aims to identify the ways that alteration of these parameters influences CALUX measurements. A greater understanding of these characteristics will lead to increased accuracy, precision, and reproducibility of the widely used CALUX bioassay within and between research laboratories.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)7357-7364
Number of pages8
JournalEnvironmental Science and Technology
Issue number19
Publication statusPublished - Oct 1 2005


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Environmental Science(all)
  • Environmental Chemistry

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