Specialized Tools for Electrophysiology and Cell Biology Research

IonFlux Automated HTS Patch Clamp System - Mercury and Mercury HT

Product Summary

Bringing plate reader simplicity to ion channel screening
IonFlux is the first automated patch clamp system to offer simplicity, affordability, and high throughput in a single instrument.


  • Highest throughput system available
  • Lowest cost per data point
  • Compatible with lab automation hardware
  • Ideal for ion channel research and assay development applications
  • Automated patch performance
  • Similar cost to a manual patch clamp rig
  • No patch clamp expertise required

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The IonFlux System delivers a high throughput solution for ion channel drug discovery and research. The system provides outstanding patch clamp performance in a complete, easy to use system with “plate reader simplicity”. Fluxion’s proprietary Well Plate Microfluidic™ technology eliminates pipetting steps, and allows continuous recording of cell ensembles. The fast compound addition and continual washing enables both ligand-gated and voltage-gated studies.

IonFlux comes in two configurations to meet the widest variety of application needs

The IonFlux Mercury is ideally suited for ion channel research and assay development. This system features 16 independent amplifier channels and works with proprietary SBS format 96 well plates supporting 8 independent experiments per plate.

The IonFlux Mercury HT features 64 independent amplifier channels and is designed for high throughput screening of ion channel targets. The SBS format plates used with the Mercury HT support 32 unique experiments per plate.

Both systems offer cell ensemble recording to improve reliability and reduce variability.

Ionflux System Overview

Ion channels are an important, yet under served drug target class, making up over one fourth of druggable targets

IonFlux is the first instrument of its kind to offer a scalable solution for automated electrophysiology. With a low cost per data point, high experimental flexibility, and a space-saving footprint, the IonFlux is ready to meet all of your ion channel and drug discovery needs.

ionflux application areas

In ion channel research…
Ion channel research is critical to understanding critical biological processes occurring throughout the cardiovascular, metabolic, and nervous systems. The manual patch clamp technique is often employed to record currents from individual cells, but these experiments are limited to smaller data sets. The IonFlux Mercury is the first instrument of its kind to offer the convenience and throughput of automated patch clamping at a price that fits the budget of the individual research lab.

The IonFlux Mercury can be used for a wide variety of ion channel investigations, including:

  • Functional expression of ion channels
  • Compound profiling
  • Mutant and cell line screening
  • Recording from primary cells
  • Transient transfection

In ion channel drug discovery and development…
Ion channels represent a major classification of targets for drug discovery. They play critical roles in many disease conditions including pain, epilepsy, Alzheimer’s, and cardiovascular conditions. Patch clamp measurements are essential to ion channel drug discovery, but the manual technique and first generation automated instruments do not provide the throughput and flexibility required to meet the needs of screening workflows and cost targets. The IonFlux Mercury HT offers the highest throughput at the lowest running cost of any automated patch clamp instrument available.

Features Benefits
Reduces time to publication
Accelerates drug discovery and development
High throughput design with 16 or 64 channels of amplification, all run in parallel
Simple to use with “plate reader simplicity” Eliminates need for manual patch clamp technique
Ensures quick setup of experiments
Small, bench top footprint
Compatible with lab automation equipment
Reduces lab space needed
Facilitates integration with existing HTS workflows
Addresses both ligand- and voltage-gated ion channels
Continuous recording capability with full wash-out
Ensures flexibility to address a wide variety of ion channel investigations and screening campaigns.

Principles of Operation

Well Plate Microfluidics: Providing the best of both worlds

The IonFlux utilizes an innovative Well Plate Microfluidic™ technology to embed micron-scale fluidic channels on the bottom of an SBS-standard well plate. This approach offers the convenience of using well plates with existing laboratory equipment. At the same time, it provides a high degree of functionality and flexibility for running ion channel investigations.

Cells and compounds are added to the well plate

Each IonFlux Plate contains an array of experimental patterns. Each experimental pattern comprises 12 wells: 8 for compounds, 2 for cell trapping, and 2 for cell inlet and outlet.

Cells are loaded in the inlet well, buffer is loaded into the trapping wells, and 8 unique compounds or concentrations series are loaded into the remaining wells of the experimental pattern.

IonFlux 384 well plate


Cells are trapped in an ensemble array

Cells are pushed through the main flow channel using pressure from the instrument. An ensemble of 20 cells is trapped in small channels which resemble patch pipettes. There are two ensembles of 20 cells per experimental pattern each of which gets exposed to the same group of 8 compounds. This provides 8 data points in duplicate for enhanced data fidelity.

Cell trap in IonFlux plate



Current is recorded from each ensemble

Electrodes from the instrument are placed in fluidic contact with each 20 cell ensemble. Current is measured from the group of 20 cells using a discrete patch clamp amplifier. This approach produces high success rates since the recording averages the current across all 20 cells.

Compounds can be applied across the cells with full washout in between . The system uses continuous recording to facilitate recording from fast-acting ion channels.

ensemble closeup

System Configurations

A system that meets YOUR needs

The IonFlux System was designed with a keen understanding that every lab has its own unique needs. That’s why the IonFlux comes in two configurations to meet your specific requirements for throughput, automation, and budget.

IonFlux Mercury HT

The IonFlux Mercury HT is the highest throughput automated patch clamp system available today. It has 64 patch clamp amplifiers which run in parallel to produce up to 8000 data points per day.

  • Highest throughput system available
  • Lowest cost per data point
  • Compatible with lab automation hardware
  • Space saving footprint

Typical applications include drug screening, pharmacology, and cardiac safety profiling (hERG).

IonFlux Mercury

The IonFlux Mercury is the world’s first mutli-channel automated patch clamp system designed for the individual research lab. It has 16 patch clamp amplifiers which run in parallel.

  • Ideal for ion channel research and assay development applications
  • Automated patch performance for the cost of a manual patch clamp rig
  • No patch clamp expertise required

Typical applications include functional expression of ion channels, mutant screening, and drug profiling.

IonFlux Mercury 2

IonFlux Plate Configurations

IonFlux Plates are consumable devices featuring Well Plate Microfluidic™ technology. There are different plate designs to accommodate a wide range of ion channel applications. They are integrated into SBS-standard well plate formats for convenience and compatibility with automated liquid handling instrumentation.

Experimental Patterns

IonFlux microfluidic well plates contain an array of experimental patterns. Each pattern consists of 12 wells that are used to carry out an ion channel experiment. The wells are all connected to each other through microfluidic channels which run underneath the plate. Within an individual pattern, two of the wells are used to control the cell trapping process and two wells are used as an input and output for the cells. The remaining eight wells receive unique compounds or a concentration series. All eight compound wells can be applied to the cell ensemble trapped in a the experimental pattern.

IonFlux Mercury plates each contain 8 experimental patterns on a 96-well plate format, whereas IonFlux Mercury HT plates each contain 32 experimental patterns on a 384-well plate format.

well plate diagram

  IonFlux Mercury HT / 384-well IonFlux Mercury / 96-well
Plate format SBS-standard 384 well plate
square well
SBS-standard 96 well plate
square well
Working volume of well 100µL 250µL
Number of experimental patterns 32 8
Number of compounds per pattern 8 8
Number of cell recordings per pattern 2 2
Number of cells trapped per recording 20 20
Compounds tested per plate 256 64
Total data points per plate 512 128


IF 96-well Layouts IF 384-well Layouts

IonFlux Software

Intuitive software control for maximum productivity

The IonFlux Software makes it easy to setup, run, and analyze complex ion channel experiments. The simple graphical interface and intuitive workflow enables users to get started quickly and increase productivity.

setup module
runtime module
data analysis module

Platform Specific Specifications


  IonFlux Mercury IonFlux Mercury HT
System performance
  Daily throughput 2000 data points 8000 data points
  Simultaneous amplifier channels 16 64
  Cell recording configuration Ensemble recording, single cell Ensemble recording, single cell
  Compound application time < 100 ms < 100 ms
Plate format
  Plate type SBS standard 96 well SBS standard 384 well
  Total data points per plate 128 512
  Unique compounds/concentrations per plate 64 256
  Number of experimental patterns per plate 8 32

System Specifications Common to Mercury and Mercury HT

Instrument configuration
  Instrument dimensions 20 x 20 x 10“ (50 x 50 x 25 cm)
  Amplifier configuration Sampling rate adjustable to 20 kHz
Capacitance, leak, series resistance compensation
  Temperature control Ambient to 40 °C
  Cell recording format 20 cells per ensemble recording, 2x redundancy
  Operation modules Protocol editor, run table, assay development mode, recording visualization, analysis, and data export
  Operating system Windows 10 - 64 bit
External compatibility
  Liquid handling automation Compatible with most liquid handlers, SDK available
  Multiplexing ability Integrate up to 4 readers per liquid handler

Customers from Europe and Australia can use the Multi Channel Systems - Online Shop to order Warner products or create quotes.

Order No. Model No. Product Description USA Price Order
69-3726 Mercury HT IonFlux Mercury HT, 64 channel HTS patch clamp system Login Login
69-3702 Mercury IonFlux Mercury, 16 channel HTS patch clamp system Login Login
69-3701 IonFlux Classic IonFlux Classic, 16 channel system Login Login
IonFlux Plates
69-3728 IF-HT plate 32 pattern experimental plate for Mercury HT Login Login
69-3729 IF-HT single 32 pattern experimental plate for Mercury HT, single cell Login Login
69-3708 IF-16 plate 8 pattern experimental plate for Mercury Login Login
69-3709 IF-16 single 8 pattern experimental plate for Mercury, single cell Login Login
69-3727 IonFlux Mercury and Mercury HT installation and training Login Login
69-3704 Cooling/Heating module for Mercury Login Login
69-3710 FL reagent Login Login

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