Dual Luciferase Reporter Assay Kit



Product Information

The Dual Luciferase Reporter Assay Kit sequentially measures the activity of Firefly and Renilla luciferases from the same sample. This kit is an excellent choice to detect changes in signalling pathways and gene regulation from cells transfected with reporter plasmids containing genes encoding Firefly and Renilla luciferases. In the assay, Firefly luciferase is detected with Luciferin as a substrate and then Renilla luciferase is detected with coelenterazine as a substrate. The Dual Luciferase Reporter Assay Kit can be used for the sensitive detection of the expression of Luciferase regulated by various gene elements.

Usually, the transcriptional regulatory element is cloned upstream of Firefly luciferase, or the 3'-UTR regulatory region is cloned downstream of firefly luciferase. The transfected cells are induced by a corresponding stimulator and lysed to determine the luciferase activity. The stimulatory-inducing effect of the regulatory elements is evaluated by luciferase activity. Renilla luciferase acts as an internal reference control for optimizing transfection efficiency and cell number. Firefly luciferase catalyzes the emission of Luciferin at 560 nm and Renilla luciferase catalyzes the emission of coelenterazine at 465 nm. This product is an economical alternative to other expensive Dual Luciferase assay kits.

Product Components

Components MORV0010 - 100 rxn

5 x Cell lysis Buffer

10 ml

Reaction Buffer II (Luciferase)

10 ml

Luciferase Substrate (Lyophilized)

1 vial

Stop & Reaction Buffer

10 ml

Renilla Substrate

200 µl


Store at -20℃;
Dissolved and dispensed Luciferase Substrate can be stored at -70℃ for long term, or at -20℃ for less than one month

Preparation and Guidelines

Additional materials required

PBS, pipette or multichannel pipette, immunoassay microplates (black is preferred), luminometer detector or full-spectrum microplate reader.

User Guides

  • Mix the Reaction Buffer II (Luciferase) with the lyophilized Luciferase substrate (in the brown dark bottle). Mix thoroughly and keep away from light at -70℃.
  • Mix 5 × Cell Lysis Buffer and ddH2O in a ratio of 1:4 before use. Keep on ice during experiment.
  • Renilla Substrate is dissolved in ethanol. For initial use, centrifuge briefly and carefully measure the volume of the solution in the tube. If the volume of the liquid is significantly reduced in the tube, add ethanol to bring the total volume back to 200 ul.
  • When using the Renilla Substrate, store on ice. Calculate the actual amount required and mix with the appropriate amount of Stop & Reaction Buffer and Renilla Substrate in a ratio of 50:1. Store at room temperature away from light.
  • The enzymatic reaction is sensitive to temperature. The cell lysis solution and the detection substrate solution should be equilibrated to room temperature before adding sample.
  • Use a luminometer or multi-mode plate reader with luminescence functionality for detection. The value of background signal and sample values may differ between detection instruments. Therefore, it is recommended to optimise the assay and detect the background signal of the substrate prior to experimentation. The values determined on different instruments should not be compared directly. If a full-spectrum microplate reader is used for detection, it is recommended to use an opaque microplate and guarantee a certain interval between the detection wells.


1. Cell Lysis
Discard the cell culture medium and wash the cells twice with PBS. Add the appropriate amount of 1 × Cell Lysis Buffer as recommended in the table below. Incubate or shake for 5 min at room temperature, pipette up and down and transfer the cell lysate to a 1.5 ml centrifuge tube. Centrifuge for 2 min, 12000 × g at room temperature, and collect the supernatant for experimentation.

Cell Culture Plate 1 x Cell Lysis Buffer


500 µl

12- well

200 µl

24 -well

100 µl


50 µl


20 µl

If the expression level of luciferase is too low, the amount of Cell Lysis Buffer can be appropriately reduced to increase the protein concentration.

2. Firefly luciferase activity detection

Add 100 μl of Luciferase Substrate (pre-equilibrated to room temperature) to the detection tube or microplate. Carefully pipette 20 μl of the cell lysate into the test tube or the plate. Mix rapidly and immediately detect the Firefly luciferase reporter gene activity using a luminometer or a full-spectrum microplate reader.

3. Renilla luciferase activity detection

Add 100 μl of freshly prepared Renilla Substrate solution to the above reaction solution. Mix rapidly and immediately detect the Renilla luciferase reporter gene activity.


  1. The optimum lysis time may vary for different cell lines. It is recommended to start from 5 min and extended the lysis time to 10 min for complete lysis. After the lysis is completed, do not pipet the cells to prevent the production of air bubbles/foam which may affect enzyme activity.

  2. If the expression level of luciferase is too low, the amount of Cell Lysis Buffer can be appropriately reduced to increase the protein concentration.

  3. In general, the addition of the Stop & Reaction Buffer can inhibit the more than 99% of the activity of Firefly luciferase, however, there may be trace activity left. Therefore, it is recommended to control the RLU value of expression of Renilla luciferase at a level comparable to or slightly higher than that of Firefly luciferase during transfection.

  4. The luminescence intensity is stable for ~ 1 minute after the lysate is in contact with the substrate. When using a single-tube luminometer, the optimal time interval between the mixing of different samples and substrates and the detection on the machine should be as consistent as possible. When using a full-spectrum microplate reader, the cell lysate should be added to the well first, then the detection substrate should be added and tested on the instrument as soon as possible. The measurement time can be set between 1 - 10 sec according to the intensity of the luminescence value. Increasing the detection time will increase the luminescence value of the sample as well as the background at the same time.
View AllClose