Quantifying DNA damage is mandatory to assess potential adverse effects of candidate drugs or molecules or extracts developed in the dermo-cosmetic industry, but also to assess the efficacy of therapeutic approaches with the aim of producing tumor cell genotoxicity in cancer treatment.

The comet assay is a sensitive, well established technique for quantifying DNA damage in eukaryotic cells. Compatible with the detection of a wide range of DNA damaging agents, its principle consists in the migration of fragmented DNA in an electrophoresis gel (damaged DNA forming the tail of the comet), while intact DNA moves at a slower rate (head of the comet). The percentage of fragmented DNA in the comet tail is a direct measure of DNA damage.

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