We develop and validate fit-for-purpose flow cytometric biomarker assays and qualify client developed assays

These assays are transferred to our global flow cytometry departments for use in clinical trials. Our dedicated scientific team work closely with our partners to deliver a superior service that reduces cost, enhances quality and expedites drug development.

Emerging science requires ever more complex flow cytometry based biomarker assays.


The R&D Department provides expertise in the following areas:

  • Complex flow cytometry assays are developed, optimised, validated and implemented globally at New York, Dublin and Singapore
  • Qualification of sponsor developed flow cytometry assays
  • Eight-color flow cytometry assays, the ICON global standard

Complex flow cytometry assays

Examples of complex flow cytometry assays validated at ICON include:

  • T cell and B cell subset immunophenotyping along with monocyte, granulocyte, NK, and basophil identification
  • Rare event cell enumeration including detection of myeloid derived suppressor cells, dendritic cell subpopulations and blast cells
  • Enumeration of circulating tumor cells and other ultra-rare events  such as  those measured in tetramer assays
  • Receptor occupancy assays customised per study drug
  • In vitro stimulation and quantification of intracellular cytokines
  • Intracellular small molecule measurement, including measurement of antibody-drug-conjugates correlating to a relative amount of drug delivered per cell
  • Phosphorylation assays
  • MACS bead separation assays
  • Antibody-Dependent Cell-mediated Cytotoxicity (ADCC) assays