xMAP® Technology

Applications of Luminex xMAP® Technology

Move from multiple assays to multiplexing with xMAP® Technology

xMAP® – The World’s Most Used Multiplexing Technology


Supporting discovery in research to diagnostic applications


  • Test for more biomarkers
  • Use less sample
  • Save time and reagents
  • Gain a better understanding of complex biological systems 


How xMAP Technology Works


Open-architecture xMAP Technology enables multiplexing of biological tests (assays), reducing time, labor, and costs over traditional methods such as ELISA, western blotting, PCR, and traditional arrays. Systems using xMAP Technology perform discrete assays on the surface of color coded beads known as microspheres, which are then read in a compact analyzer. Using multiple lasers or LEDs and high-speed digital-signal processors, the analyzer reads multiplex assay results by reporting the reactions occurring on each individual microsphere.

xMAP Technology Advantages and Benefits


  • Multiplexing reduces costs and labor
  • Generates more data with less sample
  • Delivers faster, more reproducible results than solid, planar arrays
  • Focused, flexible multiplexing of one to 500 analytes meets the needs of a wide variety of applications—protein expression profiling, focused gene expression profiling, autoimmune disease, genetic disease, molecular infectious disease, and HLA testing
  • Open architecture platform allows leading partner companies to provide compatible kits and software for the xMAP Technology platform

How does xMAP Technology compare with ELISA and planar assays?


Due to robust multiplexing, xMAP Technology potentially delivers more data in less time than other bioassay products, with comparable results to ELISA and microarray. The technology offers several other distinct advantages over traditional methods:

  • Speed/High Throughput—because each microsphere serves as an individual test, a large number of different bioassays can be performed and analyzed simultaneously
  • Versatility—a single xMAP Technology-based system can perform bioassays in several different formats, including nucleic acids and antigen-antibody binding, along with enzyme, receptor-ligand, and other protein interactions
  • Flexibility—the technology can be customized for the user’s specific needs or updated periodically by attaching a specific probe to a uniquely colored microsphere
  • Accuracy—the technology generates real-time analysis and accurate quantification of the biological interactions
  • Reproducibility—high volume production of xMAP microspheres within a single lot allows assay standardization that solid-phased planar arrays cannot provide


Importantly, no other solution addresses the needs of applications requiring both a high plex and high throughput at the same time. Traditional ELISA, real-time PCR and other technologies that excel at high throughput applications (greater than 1000 samples per day) lack the ability to multiplex more than five tests at a time. On the other hand, microarray technology excels in high density screening (greater than 250-plex tests)—but lacks the reproducibility needed for high throughput applications. For applications requiring a throughput of up to 1000 samples per day and multiplexing from one to 500 tests per sample, xMAP Technology stands virtually alone.