The Thrombosis Core provides instrumentation and technical support to facilitate the study of thrombosis and hemostasis. The Core features three instrument systems: 1) VenaFlux system from Cellix, 2) spinning disk confocal microscope system for intravital microscopy, and 3) Transonic perivascular flow module.
Instrumentation and Applications
The VenaFlux system from Cellix Ltd is an in vitro flow assay designed to recapitulate the shear stress conditions found in the vasculature. This integrated platform allows real-time observation and measurement of blood cell behavior over different substrates at varying shear rates using specially designed microcapillary flow chambers. With this instrument, scientists can investigate platelet adhesion, spreading, and thrombus formation on matrix proteins at arterial shear conditions using very low volumes of blood.
Microscopic observations of cells under flow conditions are accomplished using a Zeiss Model Axio Observer A1 Research inverted microscope with phase contrast, fluorescence and incubation configured with scanning stage, and controller for use with the Cellix Venaflux microfluidics pump. The digitally captured images of cell adhesion, morphology and velocity are acquired using software provided by Cellix (DucoCell) and Carl Zeiss (Axio Vision).
Spinning Disk Confocal Microscope
The spinning disk confocal microscope is specifically designed to enable rapid, real-time, in vivo studies of thrombosis and hemostasis in small animals. The system consists of an automated Yokogawa spinning disk confocal unit; a high-speed, high-sensitivity EMCCD camera (Delta Evolve 512); four solid-state excitation lasers (405nm, 488 nm, 561 nm and 650 nm); an ablation laser (510 nm) for creating thrombi via laser injury; a sensitive piezo-electric objective z-direction controller (for 3D imaging); 6 epi-fluorescent excitation channels (387 nm, 458nm, 510nm, 560nm, 575nm and 650nm); and brightfield capabilities. This upright microscope can accommodate small animals and stereotaxic equipment under its vertical illuminator.
Transonic Perivascular Flow Module
The TS420 Perivascular Flow Module provides precise blood flow measurements for in vivo animal studies. A variety of Perivascular Flowprobes are available for small and large vessel sizes. The instrument is designed to measure absolute blood flow in arteries and veins for acute and chronic thrombosis and cardiovascular research applications.