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SELECTBIO Conferences Liquid Handling and Robotics

Liquid Handling and Robotics Poster Presentations

Poster Presentations

Robust nanoliter liquid handling for flexible assay miniaturisation
Dawn Browning, Conference Organiser, TTP Labtech Ltd

Serial dilutions, plate replications and reformatting into higher density plates are important and often routine processes in drug discovery but, when assay volumes are miniaturised to nanolitre levels, there are some significant challenges to be met in the process of automating them. Miniaturised assays have important cost benefits in the reduction of precious compounds and reagents required, but it is paramount to maintain speed, accuracy and precision at these volumes or the efficiencies achieved become outweighed by the disadvantages. Miniaturising assays also allows users to draw on a wider range of high density plates for further efficiencies, but these often present challenges for liquid handling systems. mosquito® HTS (TTP LabTech) is a nanolitre liquid handler flexible enough to automate the miniaturisation of all standard HTS assays without needing special labware or system set-up changes. It offers extremely fast and accurate plate replication and serial dilutions. It is also capable of reformatting between different plate types in the same protocol – even from standard 96-well formats direct to high density 1536-well plates.

An Integrated Solution for Automated Nanoliter Hit-Picking at BioFocus
Dawn Browning, Conference Organiser, TTP Labtech Ltd

A prerequisite for efficient primary screening is rapid, automated selection of “hits” for confirmation and secondary profiling. The mosquito® X1 offers precision sampling of any individual well in 48-, 96-, 384-or 1536-well plates. This enables researchers to quickly select small volumes of hits from a variety of primary screening plates and transfer them directly to the next screening stage without further dilution. Mosquito X1’s disposable pipette tips guarantee zero cross-contamination, and their unique positive displacement pipetting technology ensures accurate and reproducible pipetting throughout the 25 nL -1.2 µL range. This poster describes a section of BioFocus’s screening workflow where mosquito X1 is integrated with a RapidStak plate stacker (Thermo Scientific) using TTP LabTech’s CherryPicker software. This allows the mosquito X1 to work unattended for extended periods. The CherryPicker software drives the system automatically by converting pick lists provided by BioFocus’ LIMS system into mosquito protocols, and feeding appropriate plates via the RapidStak. The software optimises each protocol for efficient pipette use, and, if required, could also track the volumes of the source plates for subsequent reporting back to the LIMS system.

Mosquito HTS HV for automated low volume liquid handling
Dawn Browning, Conference Organiser, TTP Labtech Ltd

Serial dilutions, plate reformatting, replication and preparation are common, routine processes in a wide range of disciplines within both academia and the drug discovery industry. Automation of liquid handling and dispensing for these processes offer accuracy and reproducibility compared to manual pipetting. Over the past six years TTP LabTech’s mosquito® HTS has established itself as very popular, reliable and robust nanolitre liquid handling instrument. With its positive displacement pipetting technology, it offers rapid accurate dispensing of sample volumes from 1,200nL down to 25nL regardless of viscosity. Disposable tips ensures zero cross contamination and users can quickly swap between applications, without labware or system set up changes. mosquito® HTS HV is an addition to TTP LabTech’s low volume liquid handling portfolio, offering the versatility to perform highly accurate microlitre pipetting (from 500 nL to 5 µL) whilst incorporating the same unique qualities of TTP LabTech’s mosquito® HTS. With outstanding accuracy (within 2.5% of target volume) and repeatability, mosquito® HTS HV can be successfully employed for serial dilutions, plate re-formatting , as well as the preparation of intermediate and assay ready plates. One particular advantage recently highlighted includes the liquid handling of “near assay” serial dilutions using standard plates where volumes between 1 -5 µL are required. mosquito HTS and HV can be employed for a wide range of chemical and biological based applications; including compound and small molecule screening, cell or bead based assays, enzyme kinetics assays, ELISA’s, molecular biology applications including PCR assays and preparation, RNAi screening and SNP genotyping.

Modular Diagnostic Platform for Automated Personalized Chemosensitivity Assays
Caroline Siegert, , Fraunhofer IPA

Individualized cancer therapy as part of personalized medicine approaches heads for an optimal therapy of patients with minimal side effects. In chemotherapy one approach is to find the most potent combination of chemotherapeutics (chemotherapeutic scheme) for high therapy efficiency. But due to high personnel cost with the first generation of manual chemosensitivity assays most health insurance funds decline reimbursement costs. On the other hand, the outcome of such personalized assays has to be proven first. The fully automated DiagnoSYS platform technology is a system for the efficient use of the potential of chemosensitivity assays. We could show that with a sufficient degree of automation higher reproducibility can be achieved. Integrated tissue preparation combined with magnetic cell enrichment via EpCAM labeling made it possible to enhance the signal to noise ratio of luminescence readings. Beside the optimization and standardization of personalized assays, cost reduction, which goes hand in hand with automation, will make the platform affordable for research groups and clinical personnel and this will amplify the acceptance for such personalized medicine approaches in the future.

Validation of a Fully Automated Multi Method for Quantification of Bosentan and Three Metabolites in Human Dried Blood Spots Using the SCAP™ DBS System
Jan Boening, Sales Manager, Nemec Automation

Dried blood spots (DBS) are an important micro-sampling technique in pharmaceutical studies, neonatal diagnosis, and in field sampling where cooled transport chains cannot be taken for granted. Recent developments in automation have overcome the error-prone and time-consuming manual sample preparation, thus adding high throughput assays to the application scope. In the context of a pharmaceutical study, a multi method was developed and validated to simultaneously quantify bosentan and three of its metabolites in human whole blood. The instrumental setup comprises of the fully automated SCAP (Sample Card And Preparation) DBS system from Prolab Instruments for sample extraction and pretreatment, and adjacent liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS) for detection. Relevance was proven by means of reproducibility, sensitivity, selectivity, cost and stability aspects of sample storage, and sample identity management. The validation demonstrated that the SCAP DBS System provides a robust automated platform for DBS analysis.

Optimization of mixing parameters in lab automation for high & low sample volumes
Olaf Hoyer, CEO, Quantifoil Instruments Gmbh

The significance of microplate mixing has largely been ignored as a serious problem, although potentially it could undermine a generation of meaningful data. We analyzed orbital microplate mixing technologies to get a better understanding of the current requirements for mixing technologies that can be applied to compounds or bioassays in microplates. This poster reviews some results of studies with BioShake, such as where the greatest need for improved mixing of high sample volume in standard tubes against low sample volume in HTS microplates. It also discusses the influences of construction material, shape and well volume of the sample carrier to the mixing results depending on the physical properties of the liquids.

Walk away, nanoscale assay preparation for high throughput qPCR using the Access™ laboratory workstation and the Roche LightCycler® 1536 System
Jesse Monsma, Marketing Coordinator, Labcyte

Quantitative reverse transcriptase PCR (RT-qPCR) offers unmatched accuracy and quantification of gene expression. Combining the one step RT-qPCR assay with a streamlined workflow upstream for generation of template from cellular material has enabled the use of higher density 384- and 1536-well microplates in high throughput methods employing fewer reagents. To successfully miniaturize RT-qPCR assay preparation for high-throughput workflows, one must overcome high risks for cross contamination, lower precision, and poor accuracy. The Access workstation combines the benefits of the Echo® liquid handler with novel reagent chemistries and qPCR analysis into a single walk-away platform for high throughput qPCR. The Echo liquid handler overcomes the challenges of assay miniaturization by enabling tipless, touchless transfer of reagents to deliver the precision and accuracy needed for high quality qPCR. This poster examines the ability to automate qPCR assay preparation from lysis to analysis utilizing the RealTime ready Cell Lysis Kit and LightCycler® 1536 system from Roche on the Access workstation—increasing throughput and reducing overall reaction volumes to as little as 500 nL.

Best of both worlds
Ute Beutekamp, Marketing Communication Assistant, Tecan Deutschland GmbH

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