Thursday, May 23, 2013

Cytation3 Takes to The Road: Day 3

Another day, another new town, and another chance to learn about applications that can utilize Cytation™3's multi-functional and automated features. Many Day 3 samples focused on determining and preventing drug resistance, including those used to treat highly infectious organisms and viruses. Here are some highlights:

Toxoplasmosis Inhibition Assay: To identify the inhibitory effects of a compound on cells infected with toxoplasmosis by a parasite, we set up Cytation3 to quantify the inhibition, and also to image the cell cytoplasms to show where the infection was localized. Normally, this would have required two separate instruments with increased setup and transfer times, but with Cytation3, we were able to image and read the sample concurrently, for improved efficiency and less trauma to the cells from transport and varying atmospheres.

Hepatitis C Assay: This researcher wanted to image and quantify Hepatitis C spots in cells to see if a test compound would decrease the infection in the cells. Again, this would have required two separate instruments, and increased lag time, but Cytation3 was able to speed the process so that the researchers could get the total cell picture.

One researcher with confocal experience asked: Do you offer a cooled camera? Cytation3 uses a Sony 16-bit, scientific grade gray scale CCD, and with typical integration times no longer than 1 second, there is no need for cooling or the added expense thereof. Cooling a camera helps to reduce dark current , an undesired noise signal generated by thermal fluctuations in the solid state detector that can degrade the captured image. While it is negligible using short integration times, it's more common in images that require exposures lasting many seconds or several minutes - such as those required in advanced confocal applications.

After we finished our demonstrations and had a chance to relax that night, we started reflecting on all the applications we’ve been privy to - both in the Cytation3 roadshow and in our collective overall experiences. We agreed that by its very nature, research is paradoxical - the more the world learns and grows, the more we realize how little we understand of the complete picture. It's a never-ending mystery, but we can’t wait to see what the future brings!

By: BioTek Instruments

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