Flow cytometry provides an unequalled technique for the analysis and sorting of specific cell types in the context of larger populations of cells. Combined use of defined flow cytometric reagents not only allows to identify minute numbers of specific cells in a total population but also enables to elucidate key aspects of their biological function. Moreover, flow cytometric cell sorting techniques, up to the level of single cell sorting, permit further investigation and modulation of specific cell populations for scientific or clinical purposes under experimentally defined conditions.
Since flow cytometry is a technique employed by many researchers, the UMCG has stationed the available flow cytometry equipment in a core facility: the Central Flow cytometry Unit (CFU). For research purposes, the CFU accommodates 4 analytical flow cytometers (two FACS-Caliburs and a FACS-LSR-II from BD Biosciences, and a MACSQuant from Miltenyi Biotec) and two multicolor cell sorters (a MoFlo-XDP and a MoFlo-Astrios, both from Beckman Coulter). For clinical diagnostic purposes the CFU accommodates two analytical flowcytometers (a FACS-Calibur and a FACS Canto, both from BD Biosciences). The significant demand for high quality analytical work is made possible by the appointment of specialized flow cytometry operators, who supervise and handle the equipment on a daily basis. The overall supervision over the CFU is held by a "flow cytometry administration committee", comprising the group-leaders of the most regular flow cytometer user-group.
More information about the flow cytometers and the agenda to make use of the CFU services can be found via the link below.