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5 Considerations For Statistical Analysis Of Flow Cytometry Data

5-considerations-for-statistical-analysis-of-flow-cytometry-data

Congratulations, your grant has been funded! Next comes generating data and publishing papers. What was that hypothesis again? It must be in the grant somewhere, right? To avoid even the appearance of HARKing — Hypothesizing After The Results Are Known — it is important to start the statistical analysis process even before the first experiments are performed. This process consists of 5 steps: setting the null hypothesis, establishing a threshold, performing the experiments, performing the statistical tests, and communicating the results. Walk with us as we discuss these steps in an example workflow.

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How To Choose The Correct Antibody For Accurate Flow Cytometry Results

choose-the-correct-antibody-for-accurate-flow-cytometry-results

With the added emphasis on reproducibility, it is critical to look at every step where experiments can be improved. No single step makes an experiment more reproducible, rather it is a process, making changes at each stage that leads to reproducibility. Antibodies comprise a critical component that needs to be reviewed. As Bradbury et al. in a commentary in Nature pointed out, the global spending on antibodies is about $1.6 billion a year, and it is estimated about half of that money is spent on “bad” antibodies. This does not include the additional costs of wasted time and effort by the researcher using these bad antibodies. Using tools to identify the best reagent to use, considering a switch to recombinant antibodies, and properly validating reagents for use in an assay, are 3 steps that will improve the reproducibility of your experiments.

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How To Achieve Accurate Flow Cytometry Calcium Flux Measurements

achieve-accurate-flow-cytometry-calcium-flux-measurements

Dyes exist for the detection of everything from large nucleic acids to reactive oxygen species, and from lipid aggregates to small ions. Concentrations of physiologically important ions such as sodium, potassium, and calcium can be important indicators of health and disease. Calcium ions play an especially critical role in cellular signaling. As a signaling messenger, calcium is involved in everything from muscle contractions, to cell motility, to enzyme activity. Calcium experiments can be very informative, and with the advent of cheaper UV lasers, more and more researchers can use ratiometric measurements to evaluate the signaling processes in phenotypically defined populations.

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5 Essential Beads For Flow Cytometry Experiments

essential-beads-for-flow-cytometry-experiments

Flow cytometry is designed to measure physical and biochemical characteristics of cells and cell-like particles using fluorescence. Fundamentally, any single-particle suspension (within a defined size range) can pass through the flow cytometer. Beads, for better or worse, are a sine qua non for the flow cytometrist. From quality control,to standardization, to compensation, there is a bead for every job. They are important — critical, even — for flow cytometry.

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Use This Preparation Guide For Accurate Flow Cytometry Results

preparation-guide-for-accurate-flow-cytometry-results

There is a lot of preparatory work that must be done before the first flow cytometry experiment can be attempted. Each step builds upon the previous one and extends where the assay is going. Be prepared for some trial and error in this process, and don’t expect perfect results the first time around. An educated user is a good user, and makes the SRL staff’s job that much easier. The partnership between investigator and SRL staff is a rewarding one, when both parties work together to achieve the ultimate goal of generating excellent data and sort results that help answer the biological question being tested.

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