Cell Culture and Cytogenetics Facility
Susanne M. Gollin, PhD, FACMG, Director
Professor, Department of Human Genetics,
Graduate School of Public Health
Dale W. Lewis, BS,CG(ASCP)CM
Senior Technologist and Laboratory Manager
To assist with these investigations, the Cell Culture and Cytogenetics Facility carries out classical and molecular cytogenetic analyses for UPCI and University of Pittsburgh investigators. These studies include karyotyping, special staining and banding procedures, and fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH). This analysis can be performed on cells from blood or tissue specimens from humans or experimental animals, cultured cells, and/or fresh, frozen, or paraffin-embedded tumor biopsies. This approach can be used to characterize the karyotype of cells; map the location of new genes, virus, or transgene insertions; monitor established cell lines to rule out interspecies cell culture contamination or other changes during cell culture; ensure the fidelity of embryonic stem cells prior to production of knockout mice; determine the pattern of chromosomal gains and losses; and enumerate copy numbers of chromosomes or cancer-related genes.
The Cell Culture and Cytogenetics Facility provides comprehensive state-of-the-art cytogenetics services ranging from assisting investigators with study design, performing cell culture, preparing probes, carrying out and interpreting classical and molecular cytogenetic analyses, and assisting in manuscript preparation. The laboratory includes equipment for cell culture, cryopreservation, cytogenetic harvests, cytogenetic analysis of human and other mammalian cells, FISH, molecular genetic procedures requisite for FISH, including polymerase chain reaction (PCR) amplification, fluorescence and light microscopy, darkroom for standard photomicrography and printing as well as digital imaging and printing to laser or dye sublimation printers.
As of 2011, the Cell Culture and Cytogenetics Facility is able to offer several new services to the research community, including Cell Line Authentication, mycoplasma testing, primary cell culture of human cells, and EBV transformation of human B-lymphocytes.
In the context of a comprehensive Cell Line Quality Assurance Program for investigators at the UPCI and other cancer centers, in conjunction with the Basic Genomics and Proteomics Facility (BGPF), the Cell Culture and Cytogenetics Facility carries out karyotyping and mycoplasma testing and the BGPF carries out microsatellite analysis.