Cytokine Release Assays (CRA)

Cytokines are small proteins that allow cells of the immune system to communicate with each other. When cytokines are produced uncontrolled, such as, e.g. in response to a biopharmaceutical molecule or a viral antigen, a condition known as cytokine release syndrome or “cytokine storm” is triggered. High levels of inflammation are created, which can be fatal.

Importance of Cytokine Release Assays

The cytokine release assay (CRA) is an in vitro assay using human cells to assess the potential risk of a compound or antigen to induce significant cytokine release from immune cells. Regulatory guidance suggests assessing cytokine release in response to drug molecules during the drug development process. We offer the conventional CRA using PBMCs. In addition, we have developed a unique and novel CRA based on human cell lines. This cell line-based CRA shows comparable data to PBMC-based CRA but with the advantage of being adaptive, consistent, reproducible and more cost-effective. The cell line-based CRA is also highly suitable for compound screening. In both PBMC-based CRA and cell line-based CRA, you can vary the culture duration and the number and type of cytokines to be analysed.

Applications of Cytokine Release Assays

Cytokine release assay (CRA) is vital in biopharmaceutical discovery and development and life science research:

  • Immunomodulatory molecules
  • Monoclonal antibodies
  • ADCs and bi-specific antibodies
  • Vaccines and viral antigens 


Looking For A Tailor-Made Solution?

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Immune Modelling & Experimental Design

Immune Risk Assessment

Tissue Damage & Cytotoxicity

Immuno-Oncology & Immunotoxicity

Inflammation & Systemic Diseases

Vaccines, Drug Delivery & Transfection

Signalling Pathways

Looking for a tailored solution?

Of course, there is no one-size-fits-all solution for most studies. Immundnz specializes in developing tailored assays to enable you to challenge the status quo in your research.


Some of our popular assays

To accelerate your research and deliver high-quality data, Immundnz offers a broad spectrum of standardized, proven assays that are readily available.

M1/M2 Polarisation

M1/M2 are important in studies of various therapeutic areas and biological pathways.



Phagocytosis is an immunologic mechanism involved in apoptosis, necrosis, infection and tumour conditions mediated by leukocytes like macrophages, DCs, and neutrophils. 

Cytokine Release Assay

Cytokine release assay (CRA) is vital in biopharmaceutical discovery and development and life science research.


Dendritic Cell Maturation

Dendritic cells (DCs) are the star antigen-presenting cells (APCs) of myeloid or haematopoietic origin that play a vital role between the innate and adaptive immune systems. 


T Cell Differentiation

The T cell proliferation assay can be used to assess modulation of the T cell response by (immunomodulatory) compounds.


Immune & Protein-Based

We perform various immunologic and protein-based assays that are needed in your research or drug development.


Case Studies

Immundnz has performed many case studies, some of which are described here. You can always reach out to us for other examples of projects we have done.


Immundnz shares insights on in vitro immunology research for drug discovery on its blog, which is regularly updated by experts in the field.