HTS & drug discovery

Measuring thousands of wells in minutes, as needed for compound screens, requires extremely fast and sensitive instrumentation – the perfect task for BMG LABTECH plate readers.

An essential part of the early phase of drug discovery is screening libraries of compounds in order to detect potential ‘hits’ which interact with a therapeutic target. Common targets include membrane proteins such as GPCRs as well as kinases. Compounds acting on a therapeutic target have to be identified out of libraries of thousands to millions of compounds, making automation of the process using microplate readers essential.

Screens are mainly conducted in 384 and 1536 well plates to minimize reaction volumes per sample. Speed and sensitivity are key requirements for screeners. A 1536 well microplate needs to be measured in seconds, maximally a few minutes. Furthermore, the fast measurement of 10 µl or even lower volume samples needs to be very precise and stable to clearly identify hits from a vast number of compounds. In addition, the reader needs to be reliable, as errors occurring during a screen result in repetitions, loss of time, reagents and consequently money.

BMG LATBECH’s multi-mode microplate readers have market leading performance ensuring hits can be reliably detected at low volumes and at the fastest speeds.  This not only enables the highest throughput but also allows rapid cycle times in kinetic assays required for studying binding kinetics and on/off rates.

The PHERAstar FSX masters all these requirements in all detection modes, making it popular in screening facilities. For screening assay development and testing, the CLARIOstar Plus is the perfect addition to develop and characterize an assay before transitioning to high throughput.

Take a look at the links below to find out more about our instruments and how they have been used by drug screeners.

Reaction catalyzed by kinases: Kinases transfer phosphate groups from ATP to a biomolecule.


Targeting a kinase? Find out how BMG LABTECH microplate readers measure interaction with kinases, kinase activities and kinase inhibitors in high throughput.



GPCRs are the top drug targets. Numerous assays study ligand binding, receptor signaling, or binding kinetics in high throughput. Measure them on a single reader.


Search our resources section for information about specific applications, literature citations, videos, blog articles and many other publications. Many of the resources provided are associated with current and previous instrument models and versions.

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