Category: Technical

Cell Separation Using Magnetic Beads: How Do Cell Separation Beads Work and How to Remove Magnetic Beads from Cells

April 2021

Cell Separation Using Magnetic Beads Due to a constant demand for enriched cell samples, there are a variety of methods used to isolate and extract target cells from a mixture. One of the more common techniques is magnetic-activated cell sorting (MACS). MACS uses magnetic beads and a magnetic separation column to perform cell enrichment. MACS The goal of MACS, also called immunomagnetic cell separation, is to isolate a single cell …

PBMC Isolation Protocol: Methods for the Isolation of White Blood Cells From Whole Blood

April 2021

Peripheral Blood Mononuclear Cells Within the human body, an interconnected system of cells works together to carry out a functional immune response. When presented with a harmful pathogen, a variety of lymphocytes and signaling molecules activate to combat and eradicate the threat. Scientists actively study this process to gain insight into possible routes for immunological research. One way to study the immune response is to look at peripheral blood mononuclear …

What Is PBMC? Human PBMC Cells, PBMC Composition, and Immune Cell Processing

March 2021

Peripheral Blood Mononuclear Cells PBMC stands for peripheral blood mononuclear cell. PBMCs are a variety of specialized immune cells that work together to protect our bodies from harmful pathogens. Their location in peripheral blood is significant because they act as a line of defense from infection and disease. PBMCs are typically collected by isolation from whole blood samples.  Where do PBMCs Come From? PBMCs are developed in the bone marrow …

What is Buffy Coat in Blood? Buffy Coat Preparation and Buffy Coat Cell Extraction

March 2021

What Is a Buffy Coat? In a sample of peripheral whole blood, less than 1% of the cells are white blood cells (WBCs) and platelets. When researchers put the sample through a centrifuge, a machine that spins the blood, those WBCs and platelets combine to form their own layer suspended between the red blood cells (RBCs) and supernatant plasma. This thin layer is called a buffy coat because of its …

What is Density Gradient Centrifugation? Differential and Density Gradient Centrifugation

October 2020

Figuring out how to separate cells is an important part of any medical researcher’s job. There are a multitude of ways to sort different types of substances and the right process often depends on what you’re trying to isolate. One of the quicker and cheaper ways to sort a sample based only on physical characteristics is with centrifugation. Density Gradient Centrifugation The process of centrifugation allows scientists to separate substances …

Different Types of T Cells and Their Functions

October 2020

T Cells T Cells, or T lymphocytes, are a major part of the immune system. They are cells specifically designed to fight infections they have not yet encountered. As part of any research, there may be a time when you need T cells for isolation. They mature in the thymus until released into the bloodstream as naive T cells. Naive T cells are unassigned T lymphocytes that search for an …

MACS vs. FACS vs. BACS: What to Consider When Sorting Cell Populations

October 2020

scientists separating cells in a research lab

MACS, FACS, and BACS are cell sorting techniques with individualized processes to isolation. Each method has advantages and disadvantages. Depending on the goal, it may be more beneficial to choose one or the other. MACS Magnetic-activated cell sorting, or MACS, is a cell separation technology which separates cells using magnets to target them. MACS is a popular form of cell isolation known to be reliable with a sustainable processing time. …

Cytotoxic T Cells Role in the Immune System

October 2020

T cells

Cytotoxic T Cells A cytotoxic T cell (CD8+ T cell) is a type of lymphocyte responsible for eliminating substances the immune system identifies as harmful. Cytotoxic T cells play a critical role in limiting infections and bacteria in the body. Functions of Cytotoxic T Cells Viruses and other bacteria attack by multiplying and spreading diseases as infected cells. Once a cell is infected, there is no way for antibodies to …

What Is Flow Cytometry?

August 2020


When researchers handle complex biological samples, they often need to isolate a specific cell population. The process of separating a cell type of interest from others in a heterogeneous mixture, known as cell isolation or cell sorting, allows scientists to perform downstream analysis for life sciences or other research areas. There are many cell sorting methods researchers have at their disposal; one such method is based in flow cytometry. Flow …

Magnetic Activated Cell Sorting: Principle of MACS Cell Sorting

August 2020


The ability to isolate cell populations from heterogenous mixtures is a key part of life sciences research. One approach to separating cells is magnetic-activated cell sorting (MACS), which uses magnets to isolate targeted cells from the rest of a biological sample. Magnetic cell separation is a popular technology; however, like any method of sorting cells, it has its shortcomings. But MACS needs to look out, because there is a new …

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