Congratulations to Christophe Deben and the team at the University of Antwerp’s Center for Oncological Research (CORE) on winning a fully-loaded Spark Cyto plate reader with live cell imaging and real-time cytometry!

This competition, which ran from April to September 2019, required labs to submit a written proposal explaining how they would use the system to further their research and advance scientific understanding. A shortlist was selected from a strong field of over 100 entries by a panel of expert judges, and each finalist was invited to give a short webinar presentation providing further details of their planned research. Christophe’s winning proposal described how he would use the Spark Cyto to investigate the influence of oxygen levels on chemotherapy-induced CD70 expression and antibody-dependent cellular cytotoxicity in non-small cell lung cancer cells. The judges were impressed by both the scope of this proposal and Christophe’s vision of how the unique features of the Spark Cyto could contribute to the growing field of immuno-oncology.

CORE received its Spark Cyto system in early December
CORE received its Spark Cyto system in early December

Christophe commented: “I’m very pleased to have been selected as the winner of this competition. When writing the project proposal, I let my imagination run wild in creating the experimental set-up, and it amazes me that nearly everything I thought of is possible with the Spark Cyto! The versatility of the instrument means that we will be able to use it for nearly every line of research running at CORE, and I can’t wait to start working with it and discover all of its capabilities.”

Following a recommendation from another group at Chr. Hansen, Christel got in touch with Tecan to discuss liquid handling automation. She continued: “We needed a system that could not only perform reliable plating, but that also had precision pipetting capability for our serial dilutions. The Freedom EVO® 200 was the best system for our workflow, as we could easily integrate a SciRobotics PetriPlater™ into the system. Our set-up can accommodate up to 60 standard plates at a time, which is fantastic, as it allows full automation of both the serial dilution steps and the plating of the samples. An integrated barcode reader also allows us to track the samples through each stage of the workflow, before transferring them to an external colony counter to avoid a backlog and keep the process running smoothly.”

Look out for details of Christophe’s work in a future issue of the Tecan Journal.

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