At the center of the Columbia Genome Center’s high-throughput screening facility is a set of robotic technologies for efficiently and accurately conducting assays.

We perform extensive quality assessment before every assay to ensure that all liquid handling is carefully calibrated and functioning correctly. We also perform ongoing quality control throughout the assay to ensure that conditions remain consistent across multiple plates, ensuring a highly controlled experimental environment.

Automated Technology Platforms

The Cell::Explorer (Perkin Elmer) is our main high-throughput screening platform. This automated system uses an anthropomorphic robotic arm to transport microtiter plates from one module to another. It also includes sophisticated instrumentation and software to limit variance among wells during assay preparation and plate incubation. This helps to ensure the accuracy of the data that result from each assay.

The Freedom EVO 200 (Tecan) offers an advanced, proven, and reliable liquid handling system for high-throughput screening. The workstation can automate a diverse range of applications including primary and secondary screening, cell growth and maintenance, and library management. It is a robotic platform that includes units for managing microplates, liquid handling, incubation, and compound library hosting. Also integrated on the platform is the Tecan Infinite 200 microplate reader, a high-performance reader that is optimized for reading fluorescence, luminescence, and absorbance.

The Microlab STAR (Hamilton) is our primary instrument for functional genomics assays. Enclosed in a BSL2 hood, it enables shRNA and cDNA screening assays in a safe environment. It is equipped with a 96-well head and an 8-channel pipetter. The system also has an integrated Tecan Infinite 200 microplate reader.