Tools of the Trade
size laboratory. Modular components of laboratory automation can be added to keep up with
increasing demand, or to consolidate multi-dis-cipline testing. From automation-ready instruments to pre- and post-analytical modules such
as a test tube decapper, centrifuge, tube sealer
and refrigerated storage, customizable automation configurations allow laboratories the
flexibility of phased implementation.
Much like adding sections of track to a model
train layout, the latest laboratory automation
track has the flexibility to curve around obstacles.
With every laboratory configured uniquely and
floor space at a premium, these new circular
tracks can adapt to nearly any laboratory or
testing environment without requiring extensive
facility construction. A point-in-space aspiration
feature helps streamline workflow by reducing
the need to aliquot (or divide) samples, and a
puck-based system with radio frequency identification (RFID) enables individual sample routing
and tracking, along with STAT prioritization.
Comprehensive analytics can be delivered via
centralized information technology. Powerful
data management systems facilitate efficient
sample flow, auto-verification of results, quick
access to samples and proactive, integrated qual-
ity control (QC) and specimen tracking to free
laboratory staff from time-consuming tasks.
Remote service improves uptime and efficiency by proactively diagnosing problems
before they become disruptions. This can be
critical for laboratories serving patients in
Total laboratory automation enables improved
health care access even in remote regions. Imagine starting out in the pre-dawn light, walking
hours from a rural home to the nearest paved
road to take a bus to Manipur, India, and the
nearest clinical laboratory. With results in hand
by 1:00 pm in time to see the doctor, the patient is
treated and can make the long trek home before
sundown. Poor roads and a high violent crime
rate make traveling at night risky in Manipur.
It’s laboratory automation that provides the fast
turnaround time, delivering results in time to
make the single day visit for testing and treatment
The science of diagnostic medicine continues to find answers to the world’s most
threatening diseases for patients in any location.
When market needs meet passionate innovators, automation advancements result in clinical
and workflow excellence to help laboratories
run faster and test smarter.
—Dave Hickey and Connie Mardis
Siemens Healthcare Diagnostics
Tarrytown, N. Y.
Puck-based system with RFID enables sample
tracking and STAT prioritization.
Automated Screening of
GPCR Target Protein Expressing Cell Lines
Molecular Devices has introduced
its ClonePix 2 system, proven
effective for rapidly assessing
receptor (GPCR) target protein
expression levels in mammalian cell
lines and selecting high expressing
clones. Unlike conventional methods and assays that have sensitivity and throughput limitations, the
ClonePix 2 system provides a solution to identify and select a range of
expression levels of endogenous GPCRs in situ. The system offers
the necessary sensitivity to detect endogenous levels of protein
limited to cell surface expression by using white light and fluorescent
imaging, followed by rapid selection of high expressing clones. The
technology platform enables high-throughput screening and picking
of up to 10,000 mammalian clones in three weeks. The system maximizes workflow efficiency and increases the probability of finding
high-quality GPCR expressing cells.
; Molecular Devices, www.moleculardevices.com
High-throughput ChIP Assay Plate
Porvair Sciences has introduced its Chromatrap96 HT, an 96-well
chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP) assay plate. The Chromatrap96
HT is a high-throughput ChIP microplate based on spin-column ChIP
technology. The assay plate comprises 96 separate Chromatrap spin
columns in one device, designed to enable researchers to perform
up to 96 ChIP experiments in parallel.
Assays can be performed either by
using a handheld multi-channel pipette
or by using automated liquid handling
robots for high throughputs. The vol-
ume and dimensions of the wells in
the microplate are similar to that of the
Chromatrap spin column, so the opti-
mized spin-column protocol forms the
basis of the approach to performing
high-throughput ChIP analysis in microplates. Each well has its own
porous disc at the bottom in which protein A or protein G has been
covalently attached. The functionalized discs have the same chemistry
and stoichiometry as the spin columns so the reagent volumes and
timings can be directly inferred for the spin-tube protocol. The micro-
plate is supplied with a close-fitting collection plate to recover the
retained chromatins at the elution step.
; Porvair Sciences Ltd., www.porvair-sciences.com