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The Immuno-Oncology Network provides services and access to equipment to facilitate your immunological research needs. The ION facility includes a basic science lab housed in the Huntsman Cancer Institute Research South building on the 2nd floor. The principal instrumentation for the ION is detailed below.

ION Instrumentation


Luminex Magpix


Luminex magpix machine

The Luminex Magpix is a versatile platform for protein and nucleic acid multiplexing assays. Multiplexing is performed using magnetic capture beads and analytes are identified and quantified using a dual laser system and fluorescence imaging.

Magpix Features

  • Minimal sample volume of 25-50uL serum, plasma, or tissue culture medium
  • Multiplexing up to 50 analytes per sample
  • Dynamic range ≥ 3.5 logs
  • High sensitivity, capable of detecting 106 copies of DNA and protein at picogram levels
  • Read time for a 96-well plate is ≤ 60 min (up to 4,800 tests/hour)
  • More than 90 Preconfigured ProcartaPlex kits with hundreds of validated analytes including chemokines, cytokines, immune checkpoints, SARS-CoV-2, growth factors, etc.

gentleMACS Octo Dissociator with Heaters


gentleMACS Octo Dissociator with Heaters

The gentleMACS Octo Dissociator with Heaters is an automated and programmable tissue dissociator capable of generating homogenates for biomolecule isolation or viable single-cell suspensions for numerous downstream applications.

gentleMACS Features

  • Complete automation for high reproducibility
  • Process up to 8 samples simultaneously
  • Closed system prevents cross-contamination of samples and enhances processing efficiency
  • C tubes produce viable single-cell suspensions for downstream applications (tissue culture, flow cytometry, etc.)
  • M tubes produce tissue homogenates for biomolecule isolation (RNA, protein, etc.)
  • Dozens of pre-optimized protocols for a wide array of tissues
  • Compatible with a wide array of tissue dissociation kits supplied by Miltenyi Biotec; alternatively, can be co-opted with user-determined enzymatic dissociation protocols.
  • Customizable programming for user needs
  • Samples can be run on the same or different programs simultaneously

autoMACS Pro Separator


autoMACS Pro Separator

The autoMACS Pro Separator is an automated cell isolation machine that provides a fast and gentle alternative or complement to flow sorting methods. The instrument uses nano-sized magnetic beads conjugated to target-specific antibodies for labeling desired cell populations and enrichment via positive or negative selection. The ferromagnetic column-based separation method allows for minimal labeling of cells, thereby preventing aggregation of cell surface markers, epitope blocking, cross-linking, and cell activation.

autoMACS Features

  • Complete automation enhances the reproducibility of cellular isolations
  • Instrument maintains high cell viability by gentle separation at 4˚C
  • Sequential labeling and separation of up to six samples by positive or negative selection
  • Rapid enrichment of cells in under 30 minutes
  • Facilitates rare cell isolation and analysis
  • Alternative or complement to flow sorting
  • Large sample volume range (0.1-50 mL)
  • Nano-sized beads (50 nm) applied to the super-paramagnetic columns allow for minimal epitope labeling
  • Minimal labeling prevents aggregation, epitope blocking, crosslinking, and aberrant cellular activation during isolation
  • Beads do not interfere with downstream applications

Attune Nxt Flow Cytometer


Attune Nxt Flow Cytometer

The Attune Nxt is a benchtop flow cytometer that utilizes acoustic focusing fluidics to enhance the sensitivity and throughput of flow assays. The Attune Nxt is capable of running low sample volumes in standard 1.7ml microfuge tubes. The Attune is equipped with a Blue (488nm) and Yellow (561nm) laser capable of detecting up to 9 colors simultaneously. The ease of the experimental setup and the intuitive software make the Attune Nxt an ideal flow cytometer for novices and experts alike.

Attune Nxt Features

  • Capable of processing low sample volumes (20ul-4mL)
  • Accommodates a range of sample tubes (17 x 100 mm to 8.5 x 45 mm)
  • Samples are run using a positive-displacement syringe pump
  • Determine sample acquisition on number of events, specific volume, or flow time
  • Rapid live analysis of up to 35,000 events/second
  • Detect up to 9 colors simultaneously with blue and yellow lasers
  • Automated maintenance cycles for easy cleaning
  • Simple, intuitive software facilitates user learning

Incucyte S3


Incucyte S3

The Incucyte S3 is a high-resolution live-cell analysis instrument for rigorous tracking of cellular behavior in near-continuous fashion. It can collect and analyze data without requiring the user to be present, thereby enhancing efficiency and decreasing the experimental burden.

Incucyte S3 Features

  • Analyze up to six cell culture vessels sequentially
  • Capable of imaging in HD phase contrast and red and green fluorescence
  • Accommodates different acquisition frequencies and magnifications in parallel
  • Scanning at regular, frequent intervals in multiple locations for representative data acquisition
  • Compatible with a diverse range of cell culture vessels, including multi-well plates and flasks
  • Walk-away setup minimizes user interference
  • Numerous applications, including assessment of cell health, migration, invasion, immune cell killing, pharmacodynamics, etc.
  • Capable of a wide array of cellular analyses, including adherent or non-adherent cells and spheroid/organoids
  • Sophisticated, intuitive software for data tracking and analysis from setup throughout the acquisition
  • Remote, networked access with unlimited free licenses

Contact Us

Matthew VanBrocklin, PhD
ION Core Director
matthew.vanbrocklin@hci.utah.edu

William Burnett, PhD
ION Core Associate Director
william.burnett@hci.utah.edu