Virology research

Find the perfect BMG LABTECH plate reader for your virology research.

Viruses are equally a threat to plants, bacteria, animals, and humans. They use their hosts to reproduce and can thereby damage them. This can lead, for example, to crop or farm animal losses and pandemics. On the other hand, viruses serve as tools for genetic engineering and the targeted modification of genomes. 


Modern virology characterises viruses molecularly and functionally and uses this information to develop diagnostic tests, antiviral drugs and vaccines. Traditionally, virology largely relied on microscopic methods. Nowadays, microplate-based assays on how to detect a virus increase throughput and enable the measurement of replication, virus neutralization, binding of molecules to viral particles and much more.


Virus assays range from simple ELISA assays for measuring antibody titer to live-cell assays to measure replication. The variety of virus assays in combination with the need for cell-based methods requires a flexible microplate reader. 

The CLARIOstar®Plus microplate reader offers this flexibility. It is a modular multi-mode reader that can be equipped with fluorescence, luminescence, absorbance and advanced detection modes. With its Atmospheric Control Unit, it is further optimized for live-cell assays as it creates the optimal environment for long-term cell-based experiments. The CLARIOstar Plus can be equipped with a red-shifted PMT for increased sensitivity with fluorophores emitting in the red range of light. These are often used in cell assays to avoid autofluorescence.

The PHERAstar FSX multi-mode microplate reader is the ideal platform for screening departments, where potential anti-viral compounds have to be detected quickly and efficiently in high throughput. In addition, it can quickly and effortlessly measure all FRET, TR-FRET and fluorescence polarization dual emission assays. These are often used in binding/interaction assays for anti-viral compound screens.


Several of BMG Labtech’s readers like the Omega series or the CLARIOstarPlus offer an optional extended incubation up to 65 °C. This feature enables to simultaneously incubate and analyse isothermal amplification assays like the Loop-mediated isothermal amplification (LAMP). This function has been used in the application note 356 to run and detect a colorimetric LAMP assay for the detection of SARS-CoV-2.

To learn more about how to detect a virus with a microplate reader check out our blog post on the topic.


Browse 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.

    February 16, 2021

    How to detect a virus with a microplate reader?

    We have been accompanied by the COVID-19 pandemic and its consequences for over a year now. Massive efforts have been made worldwide to develop antiviral treatments and vaccines effective against SARS-CoV-2. A comprehensive view of the events of the last few years suggests that virology will probably not lose its importance even after the successful containment of this pandemic. In fact, the increase in occurrence and types of virus outbreaks of recent years, such as SARS-CoV-1, Zika, MERS, Ebola and swine flu, illustrate the growing risks viruses pose not only to our health, but also to our society and economy. 

    Read more
    Vaccine Development
    May 20, 2020

    Vaccine Development: past, present and future

    Vaccines are powerful tools that have completely or nearly wiped out several viral diseases. Other infectious diseases however still await the development of effective vaccines. These diseases include malaria and HIV, whose vaccine development has been going on for decades. Presently, the globe is dealing with a pandemic of the novel Coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) and the world is clamoring for an effective vaccine. This has spurred a rapid advancement of new vaccine technology into clinical trials and could very well lead to a new era in vaccine development.

    Read more
    • A small molecule compound with an indole moiety inhibits the main protease of SARS-CoV-2 and blocks virus replication

      Hattori, SI;Higashi-Kuwata, N;Hayashi, H;Allu, SR;Raghavaiah, J;Bulut, H;Das, D;Anson, BJ;Lendy, EK;Takamatsu, Y;Takamune, N;Kishimoto, N;Murayama, K;Hasegawa, K;Li, M;Davis, DA;Kodama, EN;Yarchoan, R;Wlodawer, A;Misumi, S;Mesecar, AD;Ghosh, AK;Mitsuya, H[2021]

      Nature communications

      Read article
    • Ebola virus antibody decay-stimulation in a high proportion of survivors

      Adaken, C;Scott, JT;Sharma, R;Gopal, R;Dicks, S;Niazi, S;Ijaz, S;Edwards, T;Smith, CC;Cole, CP;Kamara, P;Kargbo, O;Doughty, HA;van Griensven, J;Horby, PW;Gevao, SM;Sahr, F;Ebola-CP Consortium, ;Dimelow, RJ;Tedder, RS;Semple, MG;Paxton, WA;Pollakis, G;[2021]


      Read article
    • Cryo-EM structures of the SARS-CoV-2 endoribonuclease Nsp15 reveal insight into nuclease specificity and dynamics

      Pillon, MC;Frazier, MN;Dillard, LB;Williams, JG;Kocaman, S;Krahn, JM;Perera, L;Hayne, CK;Gordon, J;Stewart, ZD;Sobhany, M;Deterding, LJ;Hsu, AL;Dandey, VP;Borgnia, MJ;Stanley, RE;[2021]

      Nature communications

      Read article
    • A COVID-19 vaccine candidate using SpyCatcher multimerization of the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein receptor-binding domain induces potent neutralising antibody responses

      Tan, TK;Rijal, P;Rahikainen, R;Keeble, AH;Schimanski, L;Hussain, S;Harvey, R;Hayes, JWP;Edwards, JC;McLean, RK;Martini, V;Pedrera, M;Thakur, N;Conceicao, C;Dietrich, I;Shelton, H;Ludi, A;Wilsden, G;Browning, C;Zagrajek, AK;Bialy, D;Bhat, S;Stevenson-Legge[2021]

      Nature communications

      Read article
    • C4b Binding Protein Acts as an Innate Immune Effector Against Influenza A Virus

      Varghese, P;Murugaiah, V;Beirag, N;Temperton, N;Khan, H;Alrokayan, S;Al-Ahdal, M;Nal, B;Al-Mohanna, F;Sim, R;Kishore, U;[2021]

      Frontiers in Immunology

      Read article