The Promicol method is based on measurements of adenosine triphosphate (ATP). This nucleoside tri-phosphate is used as energy source of all living cells. Therefore a product sample can contain ATP from different sources:
- Free ATP which is in the sample and was released from dead cells.
- Somatic ATP in animal and plant cells.
- Microbial ATP due to contaminating microorganisms.
The reagents from Promicol microbial ATP detection kits remove all sources of ATP except of microbial ATP which is afterwards specifically measured by bioluminescence reaction. A firefly enzyme is used which converts the specific substrate luciferin into oxyluciferin and light by using ATP. Therefore the released ATP is turned into light which can be measured and gives evidence of present microorganisms in the sample. In case no microbial ATP is present in the sample the reaction cannot occur and the sample is identified as sterile. The light produced is measured and expressed in Relative Light Units (RLU).
Variety of applications: