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REACTIVITY SENSITIVITY MW (kDa)
H M R Mk Dm Z Sc Endogenous 17
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Confocal immunofluorescent analysis of mitotic HeLa cells using Phospho-Histone H3 (Ser10) Antibody (Alexa Fluor® 647 Conjugate) (blue pseudocolor) and β-Tubulin (9F3) Rabbit mAb (Alexa Fluor® 555 Conjugate) (red).

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Flow cytometric analysis of THP-1 cells, untreated (A) or paclitaxel-treated (B), stained

with Phospho-Histone H3 (Ser10) Antibody (Alexa Fluor® 647 Conjugate).

The blue inserts represent PI (DNA) staining alone, showing an increase in the number of mitotic cells

in the paclitaxel-treated sample.

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Immunofluorescence (Immunocytochemistry)

A. Solutions and Reagents

NOTE: Prepare solutions with reverse osmosis deionized (RODI) or equivalent grade water.

  1. 20X Phosphate Buffered Saline (PBS): (9808) To prepare 1L 1X PBS: add 50 ml 20X PBS to 950 ml dH2O, mix. Adjust pH to 8.0.
  2. Formaldehyde: 16%, methanol free, Polysciences, Inc. (cat# 18814), use fresh and store opened vials at 4°C in dark, dilute in 1X PBS for use.
  3. Blocking Buffer (1X PBS / 5% normal goat serum (#5425) / 0.3% Triton™ X-100): To prepare 10 ml: add 0.5 ml normal goat serum and 0.5 ml 20X PBS to 9.0 ml dH2O, mix. While stirring, add 30 µl Triton™ X-100.
  4. Antibody Dilution Buffer: (1X PBS / 1% BSA / 0.3% Triton™ X-100): To prepare 10 ml, add 30 µl Triton™ X-100 to 10 ml 1X PBS. Mix well then add 0.1 g BSA (#9998), mix.
  5. Prolong® Gold AntiFade Reagent (#9071), Prolong® Gold AntiFade Reagent with DAPI (#8961).

B. Specimen Preparation - Cultured Cell Lines (IF-IC)

NOTE: Cells should be grown, treated, fixed and stained directly in multi-well plates, chamber slides or on coverslips.

  1. Aspirate liquid, then cover cells to a depth of 2–3 mm with 4% formaldehyde diluted in 1X PBS.

    NOTE: Formaldehyde is toxic, use only in a fume hood.

  2. Allow cells to fix for 15 min at room temperature.
  3. Aspirate fixative, rinse three times in 1X PBS for 5 min each.
  4. Proceed with Immunostaining (Section C).

C. Immunostaining

NOTE: All subsequent incubations should be carried out at room temperature unless otherwise noted in a humid light-tight box or covered dish/plate to prevent drying and fluorochrome fading.

  1. Block specimen in Blocking Buffer for 60 min.
  2. While blocking, prepare primary antibody by diluting as indicated on datasheet in Antibody Dilution Buffer.
  3. Aspirate blocking solution, apply diluted primary antibody.
  4. Incubate overnight at 4°C.
  5. Rinse three times in 1X PBS for 5 min each.
  6. Coverslip slides with Prolong® Gold Antifade Reagent (#9071) or Prolong® Gold Antifade Reagent with DAPI (#8961).
  7. For best results, allow mountant to cure overnight at room temperature. For long-term storage, store slides flat at 4°C protected from light.

posted November 2006

revised November 2013

protocol id: 182

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Flow Cytometry General Protocol

If using whole blood, please follow the Flow Cytometry Whole Blood Protocol.

A. Solutions and Reagents

NOTE: Prepare solutions with reverse osmosis deionized (RODI) or equivalent grade water.

  1. 20X Phosphate Buffered Saline (PBS): (#9808) To prepare 1 L 1X PBS: add 50 ml 20X PBS to 950 ml dH2O, mix.
  2. 16% Formaldehyde (methanol free).
  3. 100% methanol.
  4. Incubation Buffer: Dissolve 0.5 g Bovine Serum Albumin (BSA) (#9998) in 100 ml 1X PBS. Store at 4°C.

B. Fixation

  1. Collect cells by centrifugation and aspirate supernatant.
  2. Resuspend cells in 0.5–1 ml 1X PBS. Add formaldehyde to obtain a final concentration of 4%.
  3. Fix for 10 min at 37°C.
  4. Chill tubes on ice for 1 min.
  5. For extracellular staining with antibodies that do not require permeabilization, proceed to immunostaining (Section D) or store cells in PBS with 0.1% sodium azide at 4°C; for intracellular staining, proceed to permeabilization (Section C).

C. Permeabilization

NOTE: This step is critical for many CST antibodies.

  1. Permeabilize cells by adding ice-cold 100% methanol slowly to pre-chilled cells, while gently vortexing, to a final concentration of 90% methanol. Alternatively, remove fix prior to permeabilization by centrifugation and resuspend in 90% methanol as described above.
  2. Incubate 30 min on ice.
  3. Proceed with immunostaining (Section D) or store cells at -20°C in 90% methanol.

D. Immunostaining

NOTE: Account for isotype matched controls for monoclonal antibodies or species matched IgG for polyclonal antibodies. Count cells using a hemocytometer or alternative method.

  1. Aliquot 0.5–1 x 106 cells into each assay tube (by volume).
  2. Add 2–3 ml incubation buffer to each tube and wash by centrifugation. Repeat.
  3. Resuspend cells in 100 µl of diluted primary antibody (prepared in incubation buffer at the recommended dilution).
  4. Incubate for 1 hr at room temperature.
  5. Wash by centrifugation in 2–3 ml incubation buffer.
  6. Resuspend cells in 0.5 ml PBS and analyze on flow cytometer; alternatively, for DNA staining, proceed to optional DNA stain (Section E).

E. Optional DNA Dye

  1. Resuspend cells in 0.5 ml of DNA dye (e.g. Propidium Iodide (PI)/RNase Staining Solution #4087).
  2. Incubate for at least 30 min at room temperature.
  3. Analyze cells in DNA staining solution on flow cytometer.

posted July 2009

revised September 2013

Flow Cytometry Whole Blood Protocol

If using cell lines, please follow the Flow Cytometry General Protocol.

A. Solutions and Reagents

NOTE: Prepare solutions with reverse osmosis deionized (RODI) or equivalent grade water.

  1. 20X Phosphate Buffered Saline (PBS): (#9808) To prepare 1 L 1X PBS: add 50 ml 20X PBS to 950 ml dH2O, mix.
  2. 16% Formaldehyde (methanol free).
  3. Triton™ X-100: To prepare 50 ml of 0.1% Triton™ X-100 add 50 μl Triton™ X-100 to 50 ml 1 X PBS and mix well.
  4. 50% methanol.
  5. Incubation Buffer: Dissolve 0.5 g Bovine Serum Albumin (BSA) (#9998) in 100 ml 1X PBS. Store at 4°C.

B. Preparation of Whole Blood (fixation, lysis, and permeabilization) for Immunostaining

  1. Aliquot 100 μl fresh whole blood per assay tube.
  2. OPTIONAL: Place tubes in rack in 37°C water bath for short-term treatments with ligands, inhibitors, drugs, etc.
  3. Add 65 μl of 10% formaldehyde to each tube.
  4. Vortex briefly and let stand for 15 min at room temperature.
  5. Add 1 ml of 0.1% Triton™ X-100 to each tube.
  6. Vortex and let stand for 30 min at room temperature.
  7. Add 1 ml incubation buffer.
  8. Pellet cells by centrifugation and aspirate supernatant.
  9. Repeat steps 7 and 8.
  10. Resuspend cells in ice-cold 50% methanol in PBS (store methanol solution at -20°C until use).
  11. Incubate at least 10 min on ice.
  12. Proceed with staining or store cells at -20°C in 50% methanol.

C. Staining Using Conjugated Primary Antibodies

NOTE: Account for isotype-matched controls for monoclonal antibodies or species matched IgG for polyclonal antibodies.

  1. Add 2–3 ml incubation buffer to each tube and rinse by centrifugation. Repeat.
  2. Add primary antibodies diluted as recommended on datasheet or product webpage in incubation buffer.
  3. Incubate for 1 hr at room temperature.
  4. Wash by centrifugation in 2–3 ml incubation buffer.
  5. Resuspend cells in 0.5 ml PBS and analyze on flow cytometer.

Reference: Chow S, Hedley D, Grom P, Magari R, Jacobberger JW, Shankey TV (2005) Whole blood fixation and permeabilization protocol with red blood cell lysis for flow cytometry of intracellular phosphorylated epitopes in leukocyte subpopulations. Cytometry A 67(1), 4–17.

posted November 2008

revised September 2013

protocol id: 407

Product Usage Information

Application Dilutions
Immunofluorescence 1:100
Flow Cytometry 1:50

Storage: Supplied in PBS (pH 7.2), less than 0.1% sodium azide and 2 mg/ml BSA. Store at 4°C. Do not aliquot the antibody. Protect from light. Do not freeze.

Specificity / Sensitivity

Phospho-Histone H3 (Ser10) Antibody (Alexa Fluor® 647 Conjugate) detects endogenous levels of histone H3 only when phosphorylated at serine 10. The antibody does not cross-react with other phosphorylated histones or with acetylated histones.


Species Reactivity: Human, Mouse, Rat, Monkey, D. melanogaster, Zebrafish, S. cerevisiae
Species predicted to react based on 100% sequence homology: Xenopus

Source / Purification

Polyclonal antibodies are produced by immunizing animals with a synthetic phosphopeptide corresponding to residues surrounding Ser10 of human histone H3. Antibodies are purified by protein A and peptide affinity chromatography. The antibody was conjugated to Alexa Fluor® 647 under optimal conditions with an F/P ratio of 2-6.

Modulation of chromatin structure plays an important role in the regulation of transcription in eukaryotes. The nucleosome, made up of DNA wound around eight core histone proteins (two each of H2A, H2B, H3, and H4), is the primary building block of chromatin (1). The amino-terminal tails of core histones undergo various post-translational modifications, including acetylation, phosphorylation, methylation, and ubiquitination (2-5). These modifications occur in response to various stimuli and have a direct effect on the accessibility of chromatin to transcription factors and, therefore, gene expression (6). In most species, histone H2B is primarily acetylated at Lys5, 12, 15, and 20 (4,7). Histone H3 is primarily acetylated at Lys9, 14, 18, 23, 27, and 56. Acetylation of H3 at Lys9 appears to have a dominant role in histone deposition and chromatin assembly in some organisms (2,3). Phosphorylation at Ser10, Ser28, and Thr11 of histone H3 is tightly correlated with chromosome condensation during both mitosis and meiosis (8-10). Phosphorylation at Thr3 of histone H3 is highly conserved among many species and is catalyzed by the kinase haspin. Immunostaining with phospho-specific antibodies in mammalian cells reveals mitotic phosphorylation at Thr3 of H3 in prophase and its dephosphorylation during anaphase (11).


1.  Workman, J.L. and Kingston, R.E. (1998) Annu Rev Biochem 67, 545-79.

2.  Hansen, J.C. et al. (1998) Biochemistry 37, 17637-41.

3.  Strahl, B.D. and Allis, C.D. (2000) Nature 403, 41-5.

4.  Cheung, P. et al. (2000) Cell 103, 263-71.

5.  Bernstein, B.E. and Schreiber, S.L. (2002) Chem Biol 9, 1167-73.

6.  Jaskelioff, M. and Peterson, C.L. (2003) Nat Cell Biol 5, 395-9.

7.  Thorne, A.W. et al. (1990) Eur J Biochem 193, 701-13.

8.  Hendzel, M.J. et al. (1997) Chromosoma 106, 348-60.

9.  Goto, H. et al. (1999) J Biol Chem 274, 25543-9.

10.  Preuss, U. et al. (2003) Nucleic Acids Res 31, 878-85.

11.  Dai, J. et al. (2005) Genes Dev 19, 472-88.


Entrez-Gene Id 8350
Swiss-Prot Acc. P68431


For Research Use Only. Not For Use In Diagnostic Procedures.
Cell Signaling Technology® is a trademark of Cell Signaling Technology, Inc.
The Alexa Fluor® dye antibody conjugates in this product are sold under license from Life Technologies Corporation for research use only, except for use in combination with DNA microarrays. The Alexa Fluor® dyes (except for Alexa Fluor® 430 dye) are covered by pending and issued patents. Alexa Fluor® is a registered trademark of Molecular Probes, Inc.