Permeabilized cells (pce) are mitochondrial preparations obtained by selectively permeabilizing the plasma membrane (e.g., with digitonin), for the exchange of soluble molecules between the cytosolic phase and external medium, without damaging the mt-membranes.
Permeabilized cells (pce) are, therefore, not any longer viable or intact cells (ce), since the intactness of cells implies the intactness of the plasma membrane. Any typical quantiative cell viability test (trypan blue etc) evaluating the intactness of the plasma membrane, yields a 100% negative result on fully permeabilized cells.
For permeabilizing the cell plasma membranes chemically with digitonin, without damaging the mt-membranes, the optimum concentration of digitonin must be previously determinated. The protocol SUIT-010 is designed for the evaluation of optimum digitonin concentration for permeabilizing cells, a requirement to account for differences between cell types, the concentration of cells, and variability between batches of the natural product digitonin.
MitoPedia topics: Sample preparation