Automated cell culture and maintenance system for stem cell research

1st April 2013

TAP Biosystems has announced it will be introducing the CompacT SC, an automated T-flask cell culture system designed to fully control expansion, differentiation and maintenance of stem cells.
The new CompacT SC, which can be used to aseptically culture multiple different stem cell lines in parallel using T75 and T175 flasks, has a number of features which makes controlling the growth and differentiation of stem cells an easy, convenient task.

The system includes automated cell imaging and analysis, allowing scientists to programme the CompacT SC to monitor cell morphology and growth curves. It also permits researchers to set the system to respond to any pre-programmed changes by automatically passaging cells and adding new media, reagents or vectors at appropriate times. This means scientists can consistently maintain cell lines in the state they need them, either as pluripotent cells or during cell differentiation and transfection. Processes can be performed at any time of the day or night, without researchers having to be in the laboratory.
The CompacT SC also comes with a Low Volume Reagent Dispensing Option and an Incubator Oxygen Control Option. These enable scientists to achieve optimal conditions for their stem cells by automatically setting the system to pipette chilled growth factors or transfection reagents at low volumes, as well as provide reduced oxygen levels to mimic in tissue conditions.
For scientists that want the flexibility to maintain cells in six well and 24 well plate formats, there is also an Advanced Plating Module, which can be easily integrated into the CompacT SC. This approach saves researchers’ time by automating plate-based applications requiring labour intensive feeding regimes.
Dave Thomas, Product Manager at TAP Biosystems commented: “Maintaining pluripotent stem cells or inducing them to differentiate can be difficult to perform manually as scientists often have to add media or reagents and reduce oxygen levels at very specific times to reproduce physiologically relevant conditions. Since this can often be overnight or at weekends, treatments are sometimes performed at a time that is not optimal for the cells, but at a time that is more convenient for the scientists. This can lead to variations in cell quality.”
Thomas added: “We’re pleased to introduce the CompacT SC at the ISSCR because researchers from core stem cell facilities that need to culture different cell lines in parallel will understand these issues. We look forward to explaining to these scientists how using the CompacT SC will ensure their stem cells are treated more consistently and more crucially, will help them generate reproducible experimental results.”

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