Methods of detection of β-galactosidase enzyme in living cells

Shiv K. Sharma, Sijan Poudel Sharma, Roger M. Leblanc

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


The application of β-galactosidase enzyme ranges from industrial use as probiotics to medically important application such as cancer detection. The irregular activities of β-galactosidase enzyme are directly related to the development of cancers. Identifying the location and expression levels of enzymes in cancer cells have considerable importance in early-stage cancer diagnosis and monitoring the efficacy of therapies. Most importantly, the knowledge of the efficient method of detection of β-galactosidase enzyme will help in the early-stage treatment of the disease. In this review paper, we provide an overview of recent advances in the detection methods of β-galactosidase enzyme in the living cells, including the detection strategies, and approaches in human beings, plants, and microorganisms such as bacteria. Further, we emphasized on the challenges and opportunities in this rapidly developing field of development of different biomarkers and fluorescent probes based on β-galactosidase enzyme. We found that previously used chromo-fluorogenic methods have been mostly replaced by the new molecular probes, although they have certain drawbacks. Upon comparing the different methods, it was found that near-infrared fluorescent probes are dominating the other detection methods.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number109885
JournalEnzyme and Microbial Technology
StatePublished - Oct 2021


  • Chemiluminescence
  • Detection
  • Fluorescence
  • Senescence
  • Sensors
  • β-Galactosidase

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Bioengineering
  • Biochemistry
  • Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology


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