Cell sorters must provide a clean fluidics environment so that the cells of interest can be sorted optimally, without the risk of cross contamination from adventitious microbes. In many cases, sorted cells cultivated for functional assays need to maintain their native physiology. In such studies, antibiotics can adversely impair the growth of the sorted cells, so that labs cannot use these to control cross contamination in the sorting environment. Additionally, with multiple users, it can be hard to ensure that the system is cleaned consistently from user to user at regular intervals.

 

Automated Cleaning Saves Time and Reduces Errors

The fluidics system of the MA900 Multi-Application Cell Sorter from Sony was designed for sorting in multi-user labs, where ease of use and adaptability are key. The streamlined MA900 fluidics operate with automated software controls to promote the most efficient setup of the system for an aseptic sort.

MA900 fluidics cart
Figure 1. MA900 fluidics cart.

The MA900 fluidics cart has individual cleaning tanks for 70% ethanol, 1% bleach, and distilled water. Weighted sensors on the fluidics cart allow a real-time measurement of the fluid levels, which is displayed in the software.

Using software-based menus, operators can choose from default and custom cleaning cycles that vary according to the type of cleaning agent used and the length of time required to prepare the cell sorter for an aseptic sort. Each cycle provides an optimal setup for decontamination of the fluidics system (Figure 2). Software guides the user through each step of the selected cleaning cycle.

 

MA900 cleaning wizard
Figure 2. The system prompts users at each cleaning step and displays status.

 

 

In multi-user labs, system administrators can enable default choices and schedule reminders that prompt users to clean the system (Figure 3).

cleaning reminders can be set up by administrators for convenience.
Figure 3. Cleaning reminders can be set up by administrators for convenience.

 

With the highest level of automation available on any cell sorter, the MA900 uses sensors, software, and engineering know-how across the workflow from startup to aseptic cleaning, QC, and sort setup. Intelligent automation dramatically simplifies operation and streamlines troubleshooting. Easy-to-use software wizards for system cleaning offers flexibility for multi-user labs performing sorting.