Liquid Scintillation Counting lets you measure radioactivity in samples. You stick the samples in a tube containing a “scintillation cocktail” which converts the energy given off during the radioactive decay to light that then gets converted to an electric signal by photomultiplier tubes in a scintillation counter. It’s really useful for things like studying phosphorylation (what I was doing), tracking molecules as they’re made and broken, and checking surface wipes for radioactive contamination. 

Here’s a great video from The Society for Radiological Protection – “An Introduction to Liquid Scintillation Counting” 

And some more information on scintillation cocktails from PerkinElmer: 

And some more information on those kinase assays I was doing: & 

And some more information on radioactivity in biochemistry: &

And some more information on radiolabeling nucleic acids:

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