Speaker(s): Seth Harris, Genentech, Inc.
Date: Apr 19, 2012
The diverse array of aqueous solutions inherent to protein crystallography screening presents a challenging venue for acoustic-based liquid transfer, but offers compelling advantages in ease of use, small crystallization volumes, and thereby significant protein reagent savings. I share our experiences with acoustic setup of successful crystallization trials using 10-30 nL protein per droplet (both advantages and limitations), technical advances in the Echo system that yield improved performance, and methods for implementing a rapid and streamlined nano-scale crystallization workflow.
Speaker(s): Rupal Cutting, Roche Applied Sciences; Tim Allison, Labcyte Inc.
Date: May 29, 2012
Quantitative reverse transcriptase PCR (RT-qPCR) offers unmatched accuracy and quantification of gene expression. The Roche LightCycler 1536 offers a unique solution for preserving proven qPCR assay formats while significantly increasing throughput over 384-well instruments. While providing increased throughput, upstream workflows for generating template for qPCR assays through RNA isolation and subsequent cDNA synthesis can be the rate limiting step for high-throughput qPCR set up. Combining a one step RT-qPCR assay with a streamlined workflow for generation of template from cellular material, higher density 1536-well microplates bring high throughput analysis while employing fewer reagents. To successfully miniaturize RT-qPCR assay preparation for high-throughput workflows, a liquid handler must be able to dispense nL volumes with high precision and accuracy while avoiding cross contamination. The Echo liquid handler overcomes these challenges using tipless, touchless, acoustic transfer of reagents to deliver the precision and accuracy needed for high quality qPCR. The Access™ workstation combines the benefits of the Echo liquid handler and novel reagent chemistries with qPCR analysis into a single walk-away platform for high throughput qPCR. This session examines the ability to streamline qPCR assay preparation from generation of template to analysis utilizing the RealTime ready Cell Lysis Kit and LightCycler 1536 system from Roche on the Access workstation from Labcyte—increasing throughput and reducing overall reaction volumes to as little as 500 nL.
Speaker(s): Lynn Rasmussen, Southern Research Institute
Date: Dec 14, 2011
The use of siRNA technology to probe the details of gene function in cells has proven to be a powerful research tool. Recently, siRNA technology has expanded into HTS applications such as the screening of whole genome siRNA libraries. There have been many technical difficulties adapting siRNA assays to HTS platforms and work continues in this area. The HTS Center at Southern Research Institute has a long history and depth of experience with small molecule screening in a wide range of assay types. With this background we have established metrics on assay performance that are rigorous and produce excellent results for drug development. When we started to develop siRNA screening technology, we expected to achieve the same assay metrics. Over the last year, a number of technical problems were identified and resolved in pursuit of this goal. As a result of this work, we now have siRNA assays with Z values of 0.7 and higher, CVs of less than 10% and a high degree of reproducibility using either Pearson's or Spearman's Correlations. Many factors contribute to the production of high quality siRNA data including equipment selection and methodology. The technical aspects of how this was achieved will be discussed, including how some of the more challenging problems were addressed and why specific pieces of equipment were selected for each step in the process.
Speaker(s): Hung Nguyen, Sanford Burnham Medical Research Institute
Date: Oct 26, 2011
To meet the goals for low volume, assay-ready plate production at the Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute, the decision was made to implement the Access workstation from Labcyte. The Access workstation is a compact automation platform that integrates the Echo® liquid handler with a sealer, centrifuge, bulk filler, and peeler. This presentation will highlight the reasons for purchasing the Access workstation, its implementation into the workflow of our laboratory, and the resulting improvements to our throughput and data quality.