Flow cytometry: 12 tools of the trade

July 1, 2009

New edition to flow cytometry reference

Practical Flow Cytometry, 4th Edition, is a reference that explains the
science and discusses the biomedical applications of quantitative analytical
cytology using laser-activated detection and cell sorting. The latest edition
has been expanded to provide full coverage of the broad spectrum of applications
in molecular biology and biotechnology fields. New to this edition are chapters
on automated analysis of array technologies, compensation, high-speed sorting,
reporter molecules, and multiplex and apoptosis assays, along with fully updated
and revised references and a list of suppliers. Go to

Free manual for ISAC and CCS members

Representatives from the ISAC International Society for the Advancement of
Cytology (ISAC) and Clinical Cytometry Society (CCS) have updated the
Flow Cytometry CLIA Compliance Manual. There are extensive
changes, particularly in the area of quality assessment, making this document
useful to flow cytometry laboratories. At the most recent ISAC council meeting,
it was decided that this document would be available to registered members of
ISAC and/or CCS. After logging onto the ISAC website

as a member, users can
access the document free of charge.

Researchers harness nanoparticles to track cancer cell changes

 A study, published in April 2009 in the online journal PLoS-ONE,
showed that a Stanford University School of Medicine team using specially
designed dye-containing nanoparticles was able to simultaneously monitor changes
in two intracellular proteins that play crucial roles in the development of
cancer. Successful development of the new technique may improve scientists'
ability to diagnose cancers by determining how aggressive a tumor's constituent
cells are, and eventually separate living cancer cells from one another, based
on characteristics indicating their degree of resistance to chemotherapeutic
drugs, which would expedite the testing for treatments targeting a tumor's most
recalcitrant cells. Visit

Wiki dedicated to clinical flow cytometry

Clinical Flow Wiki is devoted to building a connected community around
clinical flow cytometry. Intended to serve as a resource for information, case
examples, e-learning, and resources, the wiki format allows users to share their
experience and knowledge by contributing comments, posting sample cases,
correcting errors, or adding new topics. Almost every page is editable by
registered users. Learn how to participate at


Course uses hands-on and computer work

The 31st annual Clinical Course on Flow and Image Cytometry will be held at the
Roswell Park Cancer Institute, Buffalo, NY, from Aug. 30 thru Sept. 4, 2009.
Emphasis will be divided between basic flow cytometry theory, current practices
in the clinical lab, flow cytometric diagnosis of leukemia and lymphoma, and
frontiers for the future. The registration fee is $1,200 (increasing to $1,400
after Aug. 1), and includes course materials. For more information or to
register contact Marilyn Price at 716-845-8471 or
[email protected]

Expanding cell girth indicates seriousness of breast cancer

The study of how fat cells become after being exposed to a specialized
electrical field is helping researchers determine whether cells are normal,
cancerous, or a stage of cancer already invading other parts of the body. Purdue
University scientists tested the electrical process, called microfluidic
electroporative flow cytometry, and found that cells that expanded the most were
metastatic cancer. The technique (which has a patent pending) allows screening
of single cells 300 times faster — five cells per second compared with the one
cell per minute of previous methods — which permits testing of enough cells for
diagnosis. See more at

Network with industry colleagues

The International Society for Advancement of Cytometry (ISAC) has created online
networking groups to help increase communication and information sharing within
the cytometry industry. Join ISAC on
CYTO 2010, ISAC's 25th International Congress, will take place from May 8-12,
2010, in Seattle, WA. More information on CYTO 2010 programs will be posted
online at

New CLSI guidelines provide optimal methods

CLSI guideline, “Detection of HLA-Specific Alloantibody by Flow Cytometry and
Solid Phase Assays; Approved Guideline,” describes criteria for optimizing flow
cytometry cross matching and the detection of human leukocyte antigen (HLA)
alloantibody by solid phase methods in conventional and multiplex platforms.
Visit the online store at
www.clsi.org to
purchase the electronic document.

Annual CCS meeting

The Clinical Cytometry Society (CCS) will hold the 24th Annual Clinical
Cytometry Meeting and Course in Jacksonville, FL, Oct. 16-18 with the CCS course
Oct. 19-21. For details, visit

MRSA detection

Researchers at the University of Idaho are developing a faster and more accurate
method to identify methicillin resistant
Staphylococcus aureus
(MRSA) strains. Researchers have cut detection
time for staph down to three hours and are tweaking the device to allow a
complete toxin profile of staph to reveal the virulence of infections. Learn
more at www.uidaho.edu.

Identify abnormal cells

Testing blood specimens may detect abnormal white blood cells in patients years
before the chronic form of lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) develops, according to
research published in the
New England Journal of Medicine, Feb. 12, 2009. The findings may
lead to a better understanding of cellular changes that characterize the
earliest stages of the disease. For the study, researchers performed a
sophisticated form of flow cytometry to identify abnormal B-cell clones. Learn
more at

Book with bonus CD

Flow Cytometry in Clinical Diagnosis, 4th edition, offered by the
American Society of Clinical Pathologists (ASCP) comes with a CD that includes
actual flow analysis and patient samples for 39 cases. The included FCS Reader
data analysis software allows users to move gates, change parameters, and
evaluate the data and clinical information. Visit the online book store at