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School of the Biological Sciences

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What is Flow Cytometry?

Flow cytometry is a generic name for techniques that involve the analysis and/or separation of cells, or other particles, by quantification of optical parameters. As widely practised today this routinely uses suspensions of living or fixed cells which are streamed past one or more lasers from which a variety of light scattering and fluorescence parameters are detected by means of different types of detectors. Although these techniques are most widely used in mammalian biology, they can be applied to almost any particle with useful optical properties including bacteria, viruses, subcellular organelles, and artificial particles, for example, polystyrene beads bearing ligands or antibodies.

Examples of applications
  • Cell sorting
  • Immunophenotyping 
  • Transfection efficiency by measuring fluorescent proteins levels 
  • Cell cycle
  • Proliferation assays
  • Apoptosis and cell viability assays
  • RNA detection assays
  • Intracellular calcium flux
  • Rare event analysis
  • ...

In the facility, we have available not only a few classical flow cytometers (cell sorters and analysers) but also a full spectrum analyser.  


Instruments available in the facility

Cell Sorters

  • Beckman Coulter MoFlo Astrios (5 lasers, 19 detectors)
  • BD Aria III (4 lasers, 16 detectors)
  • BD Aria IIu (3 lasers, 9 detectors)


  • Cytek Biosciences Aurora (5 lasers, full spectrum analyser) 
  • Thermo Fischer Attune NxT (4 lasers, 14 detectors)
  • Beckman Coulter CytoFLEX S (4 lasers, 13 parameters) 
  • BD LSR II (4 lasers, 17 parameters)


How to get access to the facility?  

We welcome  regarding possible uses.

All users that wish to use the flow cytometry facility located in the Department of Pathology need to request an account in our online booking system called PPMS.  

Once your account is approved by the manager of the facility, all sorting and training requests, and bookings will be processed via PPMS.