Assessing the performance of the Cell Painting assay across different imaging systems

bioRxiv [Preprint]. 2023 Jun 26:2023.02.15.528711. doi: 10.1101/2023.02.15.528711.


Quantitative microscopy is a powerful method for performing phenotypic screens from which image-based profiling can extract a wealth of information, termed profiles. These profiles can be used to elucidate the changes in cellular phenotypes across cell populations from different patient samples or following genetic or chemical perturbations. One such image-based profiling method is the Cell Painting assay, which provides morphological insight through the imaging of eight cellular compartments. Here, we examine the performance of the Cell Painting assay across multiple high-throughput microscope systems and find that all are compatible with this assay. Furthermore, we determine independently for each microscope system the best performing settings, providing those who wish to adopt this assay an ideal starting point for their own assays. We also explore the impact of microscopy setting changes in the Cell Painting assay and find that few dramatically reduce the quality of a Cell Painting profile, regardless of the microscope used.

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  • Preprint