Miniaturized plate readers for low-cost, high-throughput phenotypic screening

J Lab Autom. 2015 Feb;20(1):51-5. doi: 10.1177/2211068214555414. Epub 2014 Nov 3.


We present a miniaturized plate reader for measuring optical density in 96-well plates. Our standalone reader fits in most incubators, environmental chambers, or biological containment suites, allowing users to leverage their existing laboratory infrastructure. The device contains no moving parts, allowing an entire 96-well plate to be read several times per second. We demonstrate how the fast sampling rate allows our reader to detect small changes in optical density, even when the device is placed in a shaking incubator. A wireless communication module allows remote monitoring of multiple devices in real time. These features allow easy assembly of multiple readers to create a scalable, accurate solution for high-throughput phenotypic screening.

Keywords: growth curve; multiwell plate assays; phenotypic screening; plate reader.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Automation, Laboratory / methods
  • Cytological Techniques / instrumentation*
  • Cytological Techniques / methods*
  • High-Throughput Screening Assays / instrumentation*
  • High-Throughput Screening Assays / methods*
  • Spectrophotometry / instrumentation*
  • Spectrophotometry / methods*