How to dissolve peptide in DMSO and still be safe to the cell culture

Dissolving peptides in dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO) for use in cell culture experiments requires careful handling to ensure both peptide solubility and cell safety. Here's a step-by-step guide on how to do it:

Materials and Reagents:

  1. Peptide of interest
  2. Dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO)
  3. Sterile, nuclease-free, and pyrogen-free microcentrifuge tubes
  4. Sterile, nuclease-free, and pyrogen-free pipette tips
  5. Sterile phosphate-buffered saline (PBS) or cell culture medium
  6. Sterile cell culture plates or dishes
  7. Cells for culture
  8. Appropriate culture medium


  1. Prepare a Clean Workspace:

    • Ensure that your work area is clean and sterile. Use a laminar flow hood or biosafety cabinet if available.
  2. Peptide Weighing:

    • Weigh the appropriate amount of LifeTein peptide according to your experimental needs using a calibrated analytical balance. Use a clean spatula or microspatula for handling.
  3. Prepare DMSO Stock Solution:

    • Use a sterile and dry microcentrifuge tube to prepare a stock solution of DMSO. Make sure the tube is pyrogen-free and nuclease-free.
    • Add the required volume of DMSO to the tube. DMSO is a common solvent for peptides, and the amount will depend on the peptide's solubility and your desired concentration.
    • Be cautious when using DMSO; it can readily permeate the skin, so wear appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE), such as gloves and lab coat.
  4. Peptide Dissolution:

    • Slowly add the weighed peptide to the DMSO in the tube while gently vortexing or pipetting. It may take some time for the peptide to dissolve completely.
    • Avoid vigorous mixing to minimize the introduction of air bubbles.
  5. Dilution for Cell Culture:

    • Once the peptide is fully dissolved in DMSO, you will need to dilute it further for cell culture to reach the desired working concentration.
    • To do this, add the DMSO-peptide solution dropwise to sterile PBS or cell culture medium while gently mixing. Continue mixing until the DMSO-peptide solution is well-diluted and homogenous.
  6. Final Concentration:

    • Calculate the final concentration of DMSO in the cell culture medium. Ensure it is within a range that is not toxic to your cells. DMSO concentrations of 0.1% or lower are generally considered safe for most cell lines, but you should verify this for your specific cell type.
  7. Cell Culture:

    • Aspirate the old cell culture medium from your cells.
    • Add the diluted DMSO-peptide solution to the cells, replacing the old medium. The final peptide concentration should be appropriate for your experiment.
    • Incubate your cells under normal culture conditions.
  8. Controls and Optimization:

    • Include appropriate controls in your experiments, such as cells treated with DMSO alone, to assess potential DMSO-related effects.
  9. Monitoring and Assaying:

    • Monitor your cells during the course of your experiment to assess their viability and functionality.

Remember that the solubility of peptides can vary, so you may need to adjust the DMSO concentration or consider alternative solvents if you encounter difficulties. Always work with sterile materials, follow appropriate safety precautions, and ensure that the DMSO concentration remains within a range that is safe for your specific cell type.