June 1, 2010 (Vol. 30, No. 11)
Officials at Thermo Fisher Scientific say the company’s new SmartPlex platform shifts microarrays to a 96-well configuration, thus evolving toward an ELISA-like format that increases the speed and volume of multiplex applications. Because it conforms to SBS microplate standards, SmartPlex is amenable to processing thousands of samples per day, according to Jim Clements, consulting scientist at Thermo Fisher Scientific.
“The benefits of glass for immobilizing biology are widely known. Glass is a well-understood, stable material that doesn’t leach materials or ‘crawl’ like most plastics,” notes Clements. “What you place on glass today will still be there months from now.”
The glass substrate is provided as a uniformly flat, clean (phillic) surface. In addition, the glass can be chemically modified with amino, epoxy, aldehyde, other silane, a nitro-cellulose film matrix, or metalized.
“Because the glass and plastic can be assembled by the researcher, it can be printed on or processed prior to assembling it into a 96-well microtiter plate upper structure for additional multiplexing or processing options,” continues Clements.
“Cross-contamination is not an issue because each well is isolated both with a hydrophobic mask and a permanent adhesive to prevent well to well contamination.
“The adhesive components have been extensively tested using typical biological fluids, laboratory chemicals, and buffer solutions over extended periods of time and no significant effect was found.”
Clements points out that SmartPlex has been successfully utilized in microarray applications, as well as in cell-based and transfection assays.