The BDNF HTRF kit is designed for the accurate quantitative measurement of Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor produced by cells.

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  • No-wash No-wash

The BDNF HTRF kit is designed for the accurate quantitative measurement of Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor produced by cells.



Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) is a member of the neurotrophin family, which also includes nerve growth factor (NGF) and neurotrophins 3 and 4 (NT-3 and NT-4).

BDNF is one of the most widely-studied neurotrophins in healthy or diseased brains. It is secreted by neurons and glial cells, and is strongly regulated by a wide variety of endogenous and exogenous stimuli (e.g. stress, physical activity, brain injury, diet). BDNF plays a crucial role in the control of neuronal and glial development, neuroprotection, and modulation of synaptic interactions, which are critical for cognition and memory.

Decreased levels of BDNF are associated with neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson’s Disease, Alzheimer’s Disease, Multiple Sclerosis, and Huntington’s Disease.


  • Cost-effective alternative to ELISA
  • No cross-reactivity with NGF, NT-3, and NT-4
  • Measures BDNF from all mammalian species
  • Validated on microglial cells and human astrocytes

BDNF assay principle

BDNF is measured using a sandwich immunoassay involving two specific anti-BDNF antibodies, respectively labeled with an HTRF donor and acceptor dyes. The intensity of the signal is directly proportional to the concentration of BDNF present in the sample.

Principle of the HTRF BDNF assay

BDNF assay protocol

The assay protocol, using a 384-well small volume white plate or a Cisbio low volume 96-well plate (20 µL final), is described on the right. 16 µL of cell supernatant or standard are dispensed directly into the detection plate for detection by HTRF® reagents. The antibodies labeled with the HTRF donor and acceptor can be pre-mixed and added in a single dispensing step, to further streamline the assay procedure. The assay can be run in 96- to 384-well plates by simply resizing each addition volume proportionally.

assay protocol of the HTRF BDNF kit

Technical specifications of BDNF kit

Sample size16 µL
Final assay volume20 µL
Time to resultsOvernight at RT
Kit componentsLyophilized standard, frozen detection antibodies, buffers & protocol.
LOD & LOQ (in Diluent)5 pg/mL & 31 pg/mL
Range31 – 5,000 pg/mL

NIBSC (96/534) value (IU/mL) = 0.0012 x HTRF BDNF value (pg/mL)

SpeciesHuman, mouse, rat, bovine, porcine, canine
SpecificityNo recognition of NGF, NT-3 and NT-4 

BDNF standard curve

Recombinant BDNF provided in the kit (standard) was serially diluted in diluent #5, following the procedure given in the kit’s package insert. The HTRF signal, expressed as a delta ratio, was plotted as a function of the BDNF concentrations tested.

HTRF BDNF standard curve


Intra-assay (n=24)

Sample[BDNF] (pg/mL)CV

Mean CV5.7%

Each of the 3 samples was measured 24 times, and the % CV was calculated for each sample.

Inter-assay (n=5)

Sample[BDNF] (pg/mL)CV

Mean CV6.7%

Each of the 3 samples was measured in 5 different experiments, and the % CV was calculated for each sample.

Spike and recovery

[BDNF] in the cell supernatant


[Recombinant BDNF] added (pg/mL)

[Total BDNF] expected


[Total BDNF]

measured (pg/mL)




Human microglial HMC3 cell line treated with IFN-γ

The human microglial cell line HMC3 was seeded in a T75 flask (3 million cells) in complete medium, and cultured until 80% confluence was reached. Cells were then treated or not with 10 ng/mL of human IFN-γ for 24h. Cell supernatants were collected, and secreted levels of BDNF were measured following the procedure given in the HTRF kit’s package insert.

In accordance with the literature, IFN-γ treated microglial cells displayed a decrease in BDNF release.

HTRF BDNF assay validation on HMC3 cell line treated with IFN-γ

hiPSC-derived astrocytes Astro.4U treated with pro-inflammatory cytokines

Human iPSC-derived astrocytes (Astro.4U®, Ncardia) were plated in a 96-well poly-L-ornithine/laminin-coated plate and cultured for 7 days. Cells were then treated or not with a cocktail of human pro-inflammatory cytokines (10 ng/mL TNF-α + 100 ng/mL IL-1β + 100 ng/mL IFN-γ) for 24h. Cell supernatants were collected, and secreted levels of BDNF were measured following the procedure given in the HTRF kit’s package insert.

As expected, the concentration of BDNF released by astrocytes increased significantly when cells were exposed to the cocktail of pro-inflammatory cytokines.

HTRF BDNF assay validation on iPSC-derived astrocytes treated with a pro-inflammatory cytokine cocktail

Simplified pathway for BDNF

Astrocytes are very sensitive to their environment and respond quickly in response to CNS damage. Activated signaling pathways lead to pro- or anti-inflammatory phenotypes.

In response to some cytokines and growth factors, astrocytes activate the Jak/STAT3 pathway, which is thought to be responsible for the upregulation and secretion of many neurotrophic and neuroprotective factors promoting neuron survival and synapse repair, including BDNF.

BDNF silplified pathway

HTRF Product Catalog

All your HTRF assays in one document! - Catalog

A guide to Homogeneous Time Resolved Fluorescence

General principles of HTRF - Guides

How HTRF compares to Western Blot and ELISA

Get the brochure about technology comparison. - Brochures

Product Insert BDNF Kit / 62BDNFPEG-62BDNFPEH

62BDNFPEG-62BDNFPEH - Product Insert

Molecular basis of neuroinflammation and neurodegeneration diseases

The essential guide for extending your knowledge on the molecular mechanisms of neurodegenerative diseases - Guides

Neurodegeneration and its main related diseases

Discover this infographic design on neurodegenerative diseases - Infographics

Neuroinflammation study combining hiPSC-derived astrocytes and HTRF

See published experiments and data demonstrating how immunoassays rise to the challenge of astrocyte studies in neuroinflammation research - Application Notes

On-demand webinar: Linking Neuroinflammation and Neurodegeneration

New insight into neuroinflammation research - Videos

Assays for neurosciences research

Advance your research on neurodegenerative diseases - Flyers

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