Biocolor Blyscan sulfated glycosaminoglycan sGAG Assay
Step-by-step Blyscan sGAG Assay procedure.
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Blyscan sGAG Assay Flowchart
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Biocolor Blyscan™ Glycosaminoglycan Assay

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The Biocolor Blyscan™ Glycosaminoglycan (sGAG) Assay enables quantitative measurement and analysis of sulfated proteoglycans and glycosaminoglycans (sGAG).

Soluble sGAGs may be assayed directly, whereas solid materials will require a preliminary papain extraction.

The assay can be used to measure the total sGAG content and can also be adopted to determine the O- and N-sulfated glycosaminoglycan ratio within test samples.

Suitable Samples


  • Solid samples, including cartilage, bone, connective tissue, tumor tissue
  • Liquid samples, including fluids such as urine, amniotic fluid, or synovial fluid


  • Solid samples, such as deposited ECM on 2D/3D culture surfaces by enzymatic treatment
  • Liquid samples, Culture media during 2D/3D cell culture

The assay requires that sulfated polysaccharides or sGAGs are in a soluble form. A preliminary enzymatic extraction step is required for solid samples (enzyme not supplied with kit).

The assay is not suitable for use with samples containing alginates or that comprise degraded sulfated disaccharide fragments.


Colormetric Assay, Dimethylmethylene Blue Assay (DMMB)

The dye label used in the assay is 1,9-dimethylmethylene blue (DMMB) and the dye is employed under conditions that provide a specific label for the sulfated polysaccharide component of proteoglycans or the protein free sulfated glycosaminoglycan chains.

Biocolor Blyscan sGAG 1,9-dimethylmethylene blue dye

Test Sample Composition

An extensive range of mammalian proteoglycans have been measured using this assay. The following sGAG, either still attached to the peptide/protein core, or as free chains can be assayed:

  • chondroitin sulfates (4- & 6-sulfated)
  • keratan sulfates (alkali sensitive & resistant forms)
  • dermatan sulfate
  • heparan sulfates (including heparins)

Hyaluronate is not detected by the Blyscan Assay. The presence of hyaluronate in test samples does not interfere with the measurement of sGAG.


Assay Range 0 - 50 µg/ml
Limit of Detection 2.5 µg/ml
Sensitivity 0.5 µg
Assay Run-Time
1 hour


  • fibrous and hyaline cartilages
  • arteries, heart, lung, skin and other material containing extracellular matrix (connective tissue), and solid tumors
  • extracellular matrix components that may be released by live cells into culture medium
  • soluble sGAG from synovial fluid, urine and gel chromatography fraction aliquots
Blyscan sGAG Assay Flow Chart

Technical Video

Other Names/Synonyms

Blyscan sGAG Assay, s-glycosaminoglycan, sulfated glycosaminoglycan


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Ilex Life Sciences LLC is an official distributor of Biocolor Ltd.