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Archive for March, 2018

WASPLab

New Segregation Software a Success for Leeds WASPLab

For several years, Don Whitley Scientific have been installing WASP and WASPLab units in locations around the UK. Locations that include Leeds General Infirmary, PHE Public Health Laboratory in Manchester and Blackburn Royal Hospital. Though the set-up and configuration of the systems differ (due to the modularity of WASP and WASPLab), all installations have provided an increase in efficiency and productivity in routine microbiology work. The WASPLab laboratory at Leeds have recently started using new segregation software, offering increased efficiency.

WASPLab is the sophisticated, barcode-driven, microbiology specimen processor and work-up system, moving samples from front end processing to full specimen management, automated incubation and digital microbiology. It has been long thought that bacteriology was the last bastion of traditional manual techniques but the way in which plates are read and interpreted changes dramatically with the use of WASP and WASPLab.

 

New Segregation Software

The WASPLab at Leeds General Infirmary was the first WASPLab Don Whitley Scientific and manufacturer Copan installed in the UK. The WASPLab at Leeds is one of the largest configurations of the system in the UK and they continue to make further improvements, such as new segregation software to separate negative MRSA results from the positive samples (Blackburn Royal Hospital will also be processing MRSA samples). The impressive software allows the laboratory worker to report 300 negative samples within a minute and a half, offering incredible levels of efficiency.

Copan continue to provide automated solutions for laboratories around the world. Don Whitley Scientific are proud to work with Copan, installing WASP and WASPLab systems in the UK.

 


If you would like more information on WASPLab or any other product in the Don Whitley Scientific product range, please call +44 (0) 1274 595728 or email sales@dwscientific.co.uk


 

Clostridium difficile studies can be done in a Whitley Workstation

Hypoxic Snapshot Analysis in a 3D Engineered Tumour Scaffold

Researchers have long exposed 2 dimensional cells to varying degrees of hypoxia, often found in the tumour microenvironment. This can be great for showing overall hypoxic protein expression, but fails to account for cell to cell interactions, tissue gradients, and metabolic reprogramming. To more closely mimic in vivo conditions, a 3D culture environment is necessary. While 3D culture is nothing new, Rodenhizer et al in their paper “A three-dimensional engineered tumour for spatial snapshot analysis of cell metabolism and phenotype in hypoxic gradients” found a novel way to culture in a 3D environment while maintaining the ability to perform analyses that only function in 2D. These ingenious authors did all of this in their Hypoxystation by Don Whitley Scientific. They were able to analyse and map cellular metabolism and spatially identify known and novel metabolic response to hypoxia.

The team took carcinoma cells and seeded them onto a novel rolled scaffold system the authors termed “TRACER”. They exposed the scaffold to varying degrees of hypoxia, down to as low as 0.2% O2. After incubation they unrolled the 3D scaffold and started analysis to create a metabolic snapshot of the tumour. They found the 3D scaffold tumours displayed different concentrations of metabolites as compared to 2D tumour cells, implying cell to cell interactions plays a role in tumour metabolism, depending on the depth of the cell in the scaffold. The future of cancer research will be shaped by this innovative technique and oxygen control plays an important role with use of the Hypoxystation.

single layer TRACER

Image from Nature Materials Supplementary Information, “A Three-dimensional engineered tumour for spatial snapshot analysis of cell metabolism phenotype in hypoxic gradients”

 

The Don Whitley Scientific Hypoxystation is ideal for many applications, as it can control oxygen down to 0.1% while providing a temperature and humidity controlled environment with ample working space. ISO class 3 clean room HEPA filtration is also available for long term cell culture applications.

Professor Tom Riley Lab

30 Year Commitment for Professor Tom Riley

Professor Tom Riley from Pathwest Laboratory Medicine and The University of Western Australia has been a committed Don Whitley Scientific customer for over 30 years. In the past few years he has installed two A35 Anaerobic Workstations into his lab to replace a Whitley MK III Workstation that had given him over 20 years of reliable performance.

Professor Riley started using anaerobic workstations over 30 years ago when the capacity and time consuming operation of jar gassing systems was deemed unsuitable for the number of samples he had. Tom explained to Don Whitley Scientific how he came to use Whitley Workstations. “My original anaerobic chamber from a manufacturer in Australia (that doesn’t exist anymore) was hopeless.”. The next option for Professor Riley was a Whitley MKIII Anaerobic Workstation, which served his lab for over 20 years, and was the first Whitley Anaerobic Workstation in Australia. His two Whitley A35 Anaerobic Workstations currently play a part in work that Professor Riley explains as “almost exclusively research into Clostridium difficile. This includes everything from diagnostics to pathogenesis and epidemiology”.

Although the MK III provided a reliable anaerobic environment for such a long time in Professor Riley’s lab, there are new benefits provided by the A35 Anaerobic Workstation that Tom finds particularly useful, such as the Instant Access Porthole System and Letterbox entry. The Instant Access Porthole System is unique to DWS, allowing entry to the chamber in seconds without the need of gloves or sleeves. Letterbox entry allows the user to introduce Petri dishes and similar small items into the anaerobic workstation environment in no time at all. As aforementioned, Tom also needed extra capacity to process a large number of samples. Compared to using the MKIII or anaerobic jars, the main chamber of an A35 Anaerobic Workstation will accommodate between 400-600 x 90mm Petri dishes depending on whether plate carriers are used, which accessories and system options have been incorporated and how much working space is required.

The space and reliability provided by Whitley Workstations has served Professor Tom Riley well for over three decades now. He is part of a long list of satisfied Whitley Workstation users around the world, who are all doing fantastic work with Don Whitley Scientific products.


 

Recent papers from the Riley lab are listed below