Density Gradient Media and Centrifugation for Cell Isolation

Density gradient centrifugation is commonly used for the isolation of specific cell populations from whole blood. This technique takes advantage of the differences in density between the various leukocytes and the density gradient medium. As a result, the particular cell populations isolated will depend on the density of the medium that is used.

To isolate mononuclear cells (MNCs) from peripheral blood, cord blood and bone marrow, it is recommended to use media with a density of 1.077 g/mL, such as Lymphoprep™ or Ficoll-Paque™. For this particular application, diluted blood is layered on top of the density gradient medium and the samples are centrifuged. Granulocytes and erythrocytes have a higher density than mononuclear cells and during centrifugation they sediment through the density medium layer. The less dense mononuclear cells remain at the plasma-density medium interface. This process is greatly facilitated by performing the density gradient centrifugation in a SepMate™ tube. For more details on how to perform this technique watch this video on how to isolate MNCs from whole blood using density gradient centrifugation.

Density Gradient Media



1.077 g/mL

For Enrichment of

Mononuclear Cells (MNCs)

Typical Sample Source

Peripheral Whole Blood, Cord Blood, Bone Marrow

Cost-effective Alternative to Ficoll-Paque™ Compatible with

RosetteSep™ DM-M Density Medium


1.085 g/mL

For Enrichment of

Human Myeloid Cells

Typical Sample Source

Peripheral Whole Blood

Recommended for

Isolation using the following RosetteSep™ cocktail:

HLA Myeloid Cell Enrichment Kit (Catalog #15272HLA)

Use with SepMate™



1.320 ± 0.001 g/mL

For Isolation of

DNA or RNA viruses, organelles, macromolecules, or cells


  • Use to form continuous or discontinuous gradients
  • Non-ionic and lower toxicity compared to metrizamide
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Other Products for Cell Isolation Using Density Gradient Centrifugation

Isolate PBMCs in Just 15 Minutes with SepMate™

Isolate PBMCs in Just 15 Minutes with SepMate™

Speed up, standardize and simplify the isolation of peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) by density gradient centrifugation with SepMate™. This specialized tube contains an insert that prevents the sample and density media from mixing so you can isolate PBMCs in just 15 minutes.

Isolate Cell Subsets in One Single Spin with RosetteSep™

Isolate Cell Subsets in One Single Spin with RosetteSep™

Isolate a specific subset directly from whole blood during the density gradient centrifugation process with RosetteSep™. By crosslinking unwanted cells to red blood cells (RBCs) present in the sample, the desired cells are purified during standard density gradient centrifugation. RosetteSep™ is easily combined with SepMate™ to increase sample throughput and eliminate user errors associated with improper sample layering or PBMC harvesting.