The Flow Cytometry Core provides investigators with a resource for quantitative studies of cells, extracellular vesicles, and single-cell gene transcriptome analyses. The Core offers sample acquisition and analysis, cell sorting, and consultation for experimental design, interpretation and troubleshooting.
Radioactive materials are prohibited.
The Core provides data analysis with the following software:
SpectroFlo, FACSDIVA and Sasquatch (SQS) are for acquisition only.
Analysis workstations and software training are available for researchers.
All investigators are encouraged to meet with the Scientific Director of the Flow Cytometry Core to discuss their experiment prior to ordering antibodies and other reagents. This meeting is often useful in that many potential problems can be averted before critical resources are used. The Core can also provide written protocols for staining, fixation and data analysis methods. Core technologists are available for assistance with sample acquisition, analysis and presentation. Materials available for reference in the Flow Cytometry Core lab include two introductory tutorials available in iLab, several textbooks on the basics of flow cytometry and the current protocols in cytometry. In addition, the Core frequently organizes training seminars for various levels of expertise. A meeting with both Flow Cytometry and Genomics Core directors is mandatory for pilot 10x experiments.
Flow Cytometry Applications:
Micro SpectroFlo® is used on the Cytek Aurora for data acquisition. Sony ID7000 software is used on the ID7000 spectral analyzer. BD FACSDIVA Software is used to acquire data on the Fortessa and Fusion. Data can be imported/exported as FCS 2.0, 3.0, or 3.1 when using FACSDIVA. List mode acquisition and storage of data allows for analysis and presentation using many different formats according to the needs of the investigator. Data files are permanently stored on Lerner Research Institute servers in lab folders, where they are easily accessible to all Lerner Research Institute employees with proper logon accounts. FlowJo and ModFit software are provided for analysis.
Getting Started with the Flow Cytometry Core:
Please visit our iLab page to schedule services. Users can find introductory materials, best practices and protocols on our Links & Resources page.
The BD SORP FACSAria Fusion, 20 parameter, 4-way cell sorter is equipped with 355nm, 405nm, 488nm, 561nm, and 637nm laser lines. The sorter is enclosed in a Class II Type A2 biosafety cabinet (BSC), designed to offer personnel, product, and environmental protection from potentially aerosolized biological hazards. This cell sorter has a capability of up to 4-way bulk sorting, single-cell plate index sorting, multi-functional temperature control for sample injection and collection.
Additional options included:
The BigFoot is a high-speed cell sorter, 53 parameter cell sorter equipped with 349nm-100mW, 405nm-100mW, 488nm-125mW, 561nm-120mW and 640nm-100mW lasers.
A BD LSR Fortessa capable of 18 colors or 20 parameter acquisition with five laser lines including: 355nm, 407nm, 488nm, 561nm, and 641nm. (The Fortessa is equipped with a High Throughput Sampler (HTS), allowing acquisition from 96- or 384-well microtiter plates.)
Fortessa Configuration(View PDF)
Efficient and sustainable cell counting with CellDrop - no plastic slides required. Effortlessly count cells of any density with this innovative method. Accurate cell counting, from low to high densities. Adjust chamber height, accommodate any cell.
The ZetaView is a nanoparticle tracking analyzer to determine the size histogram and concentration of exosomes and microparticles in biological fluids.
A Chromium Controller 10X Genomics instrument is available for automated single cell preparations and single cell gene expression applications. Evaluation of the single cell sample preparation, cell sorting (if needed), GEM creation, thermal cycling and cDNA amplification are performed in the Flow Cytometry Core. Further amplification and clean-up of libraries and sequencing are performed in our Genomics Core.
CytekTM Aurora spectral cell analyzer housed in the Flow Cytometry Core is equipped with five lasers (355nm: 20mW; 405nm:100mW; 488nm:50mW; 561nm:50mW; 640nm:80mW. Spectral flow cytometry technology has propelled over the past years and offers several key advantages compared to conventional flow cytometry. Traditional flow cytometry samples a narrow band of the optical spectrum. While this is very useful and has been the standard in flow cytometry over the past decades, spectral flow cytometry provides the full fluorescence emission spectrum measured on each cell, enabling easy separation of complex mixtures of fluorochrome combinations that are challenging to co-detect using traditional flow cytometry. The Aurora utilizes avalanche photodiodes resulting in higher resolution, sensitivity, and linear signals compared to conventional systems. The optical configuration is filterless, making the instrument user-friendlier and eliminates errors caused by potential wrong settings. A short-wavelength (violet laser) side scatter detector makes enumeration and immunophenotyping of microparticles possible on the Aurora. Vacuum fluidics allow quantification of absolute numbers. An autofluorescence extraction function allows better resolution of dim signals by subtraction of high autofluorescence that is inherent to some cells such as macrophages, epithelial and endothelial cells. The overall workflow of the instrument is straightforward, regardless of the complexity of the panel.
Sony ID7000 spectral flow cytometer with advanced high-parameter flow cytometry capabilities. The instrument has six lasers (320nm 20 mW, 355nm 50 mW, 405nm 100mW, 488nm 150mW, 561nm 100mW, and 637nm 140mW) and 182 detectors for complete spectral data acquisition, allowing up to +45 color panels or more, limited only by the fluorochromes available. Load-and-walkaway data acquisition is provided by automated sampling. Another distinguishing feature of this equipment is the ability to easily subtract autofluorescence from multiple subsets to reduce background signal. The ID7000 is ideal for analyzing samples with heterogeneous cell populations, such as tumors and organs, because it detects dim and rare populations with the highest sensitivity available today. Regardless of the complexity of the panel, the overall workflow of the instrument is very simple. The use of this instrument must be acknowledged in manuscripts by adding “This work utilized a Sony ID7000 that was purchased with funding from the National Institutes of Health SIFAR grant S10OD025207.”
This easy to operate cell sorter detects up to 14 parameters. Four excitation lasers (405nm-120mW, 488nm-80mW, 561nm-110mW, and 638nm-110mW) are available on 2 beam spots. Fluorescence signals from each beam spot are detected using free-form PMTs.
View MA900 configuration (PDF).
This cell analyzer is capable of 48 colors or 50 parameter acquisition with five lasers (349nm-60mW; 405nm-200mW; 488nm-150mW; 561nm-150mW and 637nm-140mW).
For biosafety information, please visit the International Society for the Advancement of Cytometry's website.
The Flow Cytometry Core provides investigators with a resource for quantitative studies of cells and extracellular vesicles, and single-cell gene transcriptome analyses.
The Core offers sample acquisition and analysis, cell sorting, and consultation for experimental design, interpretation and troubleshooting. The Core is equipped with two spectral cell analyzers: a 5 laser Cytek Aurora spectral analyzer with a 96-Well Automatic Sampling System and a 6 laser Sony ID7000 with automated sampling for various well formats. A Becton-Dickinson LSRFortessa capable of 18 color and 20 parameter acquisition with 5 lasers and High Throughput Sampler (HTS) is available for simple panels. The Core also has an Apogee A50 Micro Flow Cytometer capable of 3 color and 5 parameter acquisition with one laser and a Zetaview nanoparticle tracking analyzer is available for extracellular vesicle studies.
Biosafety Level 2 (BSL2) Compliant: Additionally, the Flow Cytometry Core includes a biosafety level 2 (BSL2) compliant cell sorters housed in Baker SterilGARD biosafety hoods. This instrument is located in a separate 176 square foot laboratory with a BioProtect III Walk-In Clean Air and Containment Cabinet that houses the FACSFusion and offers personnel, product, and environmental protection from potentially aerosolized biological hazards. The Core also offers a BSL2 compliant Becton-Dickinson FACSMelody cell sorter, consisting of 3 lasers, providing 10 parameters and is housed in a Baker SterilGARD to provide personnel, product, and environmental protection from potentially aerosolized biological hazards located in a 1,300 square foot facility. Both sorters are equipped with an aerosol management system to evacuate aerosols from the sort chamber. Standard operating procedures were developed for performing flow cytometry of samples from COVID-19 patients based on recommendations from the International Society for Advancement of Cytometry (ISAC) and approved by the Cleveland Clinic Institutional Biosafety Committee.
Data is acquired as FCS 3.0 using BD FACSDiva Software on the LSRFortessa and Aria II, and as FCS 3.1 using BD FACSChorus Software. Data can be imported/exported as FCS 2.0 or 3.0 or 3.1 when using FACSDiva. List mode acquisition and storage of data allows for analysis and presentation in many different formats according to the needs of the investigator. Data files are permanently stored in personal folders on the LRI servers, readily available to all Lerner Research Institute employees with proper logon accounts. FlowJo, Apogee Histogram and ModFit software are provided for analysis.
A Chromium Controller 10x Genomics instrument is available for automated single cell preparations and single cell gene expression applications. Evaluation of the single cell sample preparation, cell sorting (if needed), GEM creation, thermal cycling and cDNA amplification are performed in the Flow Cytometry Core. Further amplification and clean-up of libraries and sequencing are performed in our Genomics Core. The 10x Chromium Controller was purchased by the Lerner Research Institute in October 2018. The Core has successfully processed more than 800 clinical and mouse model samples. The samples were from various tissues including peripheral blood, cell culture, xenografts and surgical specimens. We offer 24/7 services to accommodate fresh clinical samples.
Validity and rigor of cytometry in the Lerner Research Institute Flow Cytometry Core
The International Society for Advancement of Cytometry (ISAC) recognizes the Lerner Research Institute Flow Cytometry Core for exceeding the threshold for excellence as outlined in the best practices for Shared Resource Laboratories (SRL) operations adopted by the society. This ISAC SRL Recognition Program is intended to promote the sustained achievement of excellence in SRL operations and provide these SRLs with acknowledgement of their accomplishments. This accreditation requires compliance with ISAC's minimal flow cytometry best practices and current biosafety regulations. The Lerner Research Institute Flow Cytometry Core passed audits for quality assurance, education and training, data management, laboratory safety, standard operating procedures and operations, staff and infrastructure.