The Translational Research Laboratory

Jane and Gale Bensussen Research Floor
The USC School of Pharmacy Translational Research Laboratory (TRLab), located on the Jane and Gale Bensussen Research Floor (5th floor) of the Pharmaceutical Sciences Center, is equipped with a wide variety of technologically advanced instruments essential for cutting edge biomedical discovery and therapeutic development research. The TRLab is composed of two major units. The Computational Bioinformatics Unit houses graphic workstations and modeling programs that enable in silico virtual screening and rational drug design applications. The Therapeutic Screening Unit houses a number of specialized instruments that enable a broad range of automated and multiplexed biological analyses in a throughput manner.

The core mission of the TRLab has been to provide investigators with a state-of-the-art technological platform and technical expertise to advance translational research endeavors in the School of Pharmacy and at USC.

Resources

The Translational Research Laboratory houses the following instruments and accessories:

ABI OpenArray Real-Time PCR System

Acknowledgement: The acquisition of this instrument was supported by a grant from the USC Core Instrumentation Fund: (http://research.usc.edu/for-investigators/funding/usc/instrumentation/)
ABI OpenArray Real-Time PCR System

Components/Accesories:

  • OpenArray NT Cycler
  • OpenArray Accufill
  • OpenArray Case Sealing Station
  •  Dual Flat Block GeneAmp PCR System 9700

Capacity: Allows for fast and throughput gene expression profiling, genotyping and digital PCR studies in a mid-density format. It utilizes a microscope slide-sized plate with 3,072 through-holes, which enables analysis of from12 samples against 224 genes up to 48 samples against 56 genes in a single run. Researchers using this technology benefit from the parallelism of microarrays and the data quality of solution-phase reactions such as PCR.

ABI 7900HT Fast Real-Time PCR System

ABI 7900HT Fast Real-Time PCR System

Components/Accessories:

  • Main Unit
  • FAST 96-Well Sample Block
  • 384-Well Sample Block
  • Microfluidic Card Sample Block
  • Microfluidic Card Sealer
  • Thermo Scientific Sorvall Legend T+ Centrifuge; 4-Piece Swinging Bucket Rotor; Sorvall/Heraeus Custom Buckets and Adaptors

Capacity: Allows for fast gene expression profiling and genotyping in a 96- or 384-well plate format. The microfluidic card upgrade enables Taqman low-density array (TLDA) analysis of from 1 sample against 384 genes up to 8 samples against 48 genes in a single run with a single addition of each sample.

BioRad Bio-Plex Suspension Array System

BioRad Bio-Plex Suspension Array System

Components/Accessories:

  • Bio-Plex 200 System
  • Bio-Plex High-Throughput Fluidics (HTF)
  • Bio-Plex Pro II Wash Station (Magnetic Plate Carrier, Vacuum Manifold Plate Carrier, Waste Bottle, 2 Buffer Bottles)
  • Millipore MultiScreen HTS Vacuum Manifold and Pressure Pump

Capacity: Powered by the Luminex xMAP technology, allows for both magnetic and polystyrene bead-based multiplex analysis of up to 100 biomolecules (proteins, peptides or nucleic acids) in a single sample.

BD LSR II Flow Cytometer

BD LSR II Flow Cytometer

Components/Accessories:

  • Three fix-aligned, air-cooled lasers:
    • 355nm UV
    • 488nm Blue
    • 635nm Red
  • Optics capable of capturing a wide range of emission wavelengths

Capacity: Equipped with 3 lasers, allows for detection of up to 8 colors simultaneously.

BD Pathway 435 High-Content Bioimager

BD Pathway 435 High-Content Bioimager

Components/Accessories:

  • Main Unit
  • Nikon Intensilight C-HGFI Unit
  • Neurite Outgrowth Module

Capacity: Allows for automated capture of microscopic images from a 96-well plate and automated image and data analysis. An additional module allows for multi-parameter analysis of neurite outgrowth in a high-throughput manner.

Seahorse XF24 Extracellular Flux Analyzer

Seahorse XF24 Extracellular Flux Analyzer

Components/Accessories:

  • Main Unit
  • Barnstead CO2-Free Incubator Model-120

Capacity: Allows for simultaneous measurement of two major energy-yielding pathways – anaerobic glycolysis and aerobic respiration in cell cultures or isolated mitochondria in a 24-well plate format.

Wyatt DynaPro Plate Reader

Wyatt DynaPro Plate Reader
Allows for measurement of the hydrodynamic radius of particles, polymers, or proteins in solution in the size range of 2-1000 nm in diameter.

HORIBA Jobin Yvon Fluorolog-3 Spectrofluorometer

HORIBA Jobin Yvon Fluorolog-3 Spectrofluorometer

Components/Accessories:

  • Main Unit (Light Source, Excitation Monochromator, Sample-Compartment Module, Emission Monochromator, Detector)
  • Controller (SpectrAcq)
  • Temperature Controller

Capacity: Allows for both steady-state and time-resolved characterization of fluorescent samples.

Bio-Rad Experion Automated Electrophoresis System

Bio-Rad Experion Automated Electrophoresis System

Components/Accessories

  • Automated Electrophoresis Station
  • Priming Station
  • Vortex Station

Capacity: Allows for microfludic chips-based eletrophoresis analysis of DNA, RNA and protein size, quantity and quality.

Bio-Rad Gene Pulser MXcell Electroporation System

Bio-Rad Gene Pulser MXcell Electroporation System

Components/Accessories:

  • Power Module
  • Plate Chamber

Capacity: Allows for microplate-based electroporation of mammalian cells – especially useful for primary and hard-to-transfect cell types.

Bio-Rad Gene Pulser Xcell Electroporation System

Bio-Rad Gene Pulser Xcell Electroporation System

Components/Accessories:

  • Main Unit
  • CE Module
  • PC Module
  • ShockPod Cuvette Chamber

Capacity: Allows for cuvette-based electroporation of both mammalian and bacteria and fungal cell types.

Prospect Edge 200 Separation System

Prospect Edge 200 Separation System

Components/Accessories:

  • Edge 200
  • AirPrep 205
  • Air Compressor

Capacity: Allows for a non-denaturing front end sample fractionation, comprising a step-wise extraction of a particle mixture using extracting media of increasing densities.

Bio-Rad ChemiDoc XRS+ System

Bio-Rad ChemiDoc XRS+ System
Capacity: Allows for imaging of a wide array of samples from large handcast polyacrylamide gels to small readyagarose gels and various blots. Detection methods include fluorescence, colorimetry, densitometry, chemiluminescence and chemifluorescence.

Perkin Elmer EnVision 2103 Multilabel Reader

Perkin Elmer EnVision 2103 Multilabel Reader
Capacity: Allows for a variety of applications based on technologies including fluorescence, time-resolved fluorescence, fluorescence polarization, luminescence, absorbance, and Alphascreen.

Perkin Elmer 1450 MicroBeta TriLux Liquid Scintillation and Luminescence Counter

Perkin Elmer 1450 MicroBeta TriLux Liquid Scintillation and Luminescence Counter
Capacity: Allows for high efficiency, low background counting of beta, gamma, and glow luminescence samples in a 24- or 96-well microplate or a 4ml microvial.

Hitachi F-2500 Fluorescence Spectrophotometer

Hitachi F-2500 Fluorescence Spectrophotometer
Capacity: Allows for a wide range of fluorescence applications from 220 to 730 nm (up to 800 using optional detector), with scan speeds of up to 3000 nm/min and resolution of 2 nm.

MD SpectraMax Gemini EM Microplate Spectrofluorometer

MD SpectraMax Gemini EM Microplate Spectrofluorometer
Capacity: Allows for a variety of fluorescence-based applications. Main features include top and bottom reading optics for both solution and cell-based assays, dual monochromators enabling selection of any wavelength in 1 nm increments, wavelength scanning, well scanning and auto PMT gain.

MD Lmax Microplate Luminometer with Injectors

MD Lmax Microplate Luminometer with Injectors
Capacity: Allows for a variety of luminescence-based applications. Additional injectors allow for dynamic assays.

Tecan GENios Pro Multifunction Microplate Reader with Injectors

Tecan GENios Pro Multifunction Microplate Reader with Injectors
Capacity: Allows for a variety of multidetection including fluorescence intensity, fluorescence polarization, luminescence and absorbance-based applications. Additional injectors allow for dynamic assays.

Jasco J-815 CD Spectrometer

Jasco J-815 CD Spectrometer

Components/Accessories

  • Standard measurement of CD as well as UV/Vis Absorbance
  • Peltier temperature control system

Capacity: Used to determine the structure of proteins in solution by measuring differences in the absorption of left- versus right-handed polarized light. Allows for characterization of a protein’s secondary structure (α-helix, β-sheet); Detection of changes in structure upon mutagenesis; Studying conformational stability of proteins at various pH ranges or temperatures, or in the presence of denaturants, buffers, stabilizers, etc.

Chargebacks

Access to lab resources is contingent upon users’ acceptance of lab operational procedures described under Lab Policies and agreement to pay charges incurred. Fees listed below are in effect from 10/1/2012 through 9/30/2013.

 

Instruments Charge/Hour Charge/Year with Unlimited Access
School of Pharmacy Other USC Users School of Pharmacy Other USC Users
ABI 7900HT Fast Real-Time PCR System (C) $20 $24 $2,000 $2,400
ABI OpenArray Real-Time PCR System (C) $20 $24 $2,000 $2,400
BioRad Bio-Plex Suspension Array System (C) $25 $30 $2,500 $3,000
BD LSR II Flow Cytometer (C) $30 $36 $3,000 $3,600
BD Pathway 435 High-Content Bioimager (C) $30 $36 $3,000 $3,600
Seahorse XF24 Extracellular Flux Analyzer (C) $25 $30 $2,500 $3,000
Horiba Jobin Yvon Fluorolog-3 Spectrofluorometer $20 $24 $2,000 $2,400
Wyatt DynaPro Plate Reader (C) $20 $24 $2,000 $2,400
BioTek Synergy H1 Hybrid Multi-Mode Microplate Reader (C) $10 $12 $1,000 $1,200
Perkin Elmer Differential Scanning Calorimeter (DSC) 8500 (C) $10 $12 $1,000 $1,200
Perkin Elmer EnVision 2103 Multilabel Reader (C) $10 $12 $1,000 $1,200
Perkin Elmer 1450 MicroBeta TriLux Liquid Scintillation and Luminescence Counter (C) N/A $400 $480
Bio-Rad ChemiDoc XRS+ System (G) N/A $400 $480
Bio-Rad Experion Automated Electrophoresis System (G) N/A $400 $480
Bio-Rad Gene Pulser MXcell Electroporation System (G) N/A $400 $480
Bio-Rad Gene Pulser Xcell Electroporation System (G) N/A $400 $480
Prospect Edge 200 Separation System (G) N/A $400 $480
Hitachi F-2500 Fluorescence Spectrophotometer (G) N/A $400 $480
MD SpectraMax Gemini EM Microplate Spectrofluorometer (G) N/A $300 $360
MD Lmax Microplate Luminometer (G) N/A $300 $360
CD Spectrometer (C) $30 $36 $3000 $3600

Notes:

  1. The usage of instruments marked with (C) is charged based on an hourly rate and a yearly unlimited access rate (yearly rate = hourly rate x 100 hours).
  2. The usage of instruments marked with (G) is charged based on a yearly unlimited access rate only, and no hourly usage rate is available for these instruments.
  3. Two yearly unlimited access rates are available for instruments marked with (G):
    • Individual Rate: $300-400 for access to one instrument
    • Bulk Rate: $2000 for access to all 9 instruments

Scheduling

Users are required to utilize CORES to schedule instruments (http://cores-usc.mis.vanderbilt.edu). For users outside of USC, please contact one of the core co-directors (Dr. Jennica Zaro, or Dr. Liana Asatryan, ) to reserve an instrument.

Reservations including changes or cancellations need to be made at least 24 hours in advance. In general, no walk-ins are allowed, however, occasional exceptions may be granted by the lab manager.

Accounts will be billed directly based on the CORES scheduler. With this in mind, users are encouraged to make time estimates as accurate as possible when scheduling. Sufficient time should be made to complete the planned experiment without encroaching on the time slots of other users. A no-show without cancellation will be charged for the time scheduled. New users or users who need technical assistance should indicate so on the reservation form and contact the student tech-in-charge (listed on the reservation page) or the lab manager to make an arrangement for assistance.

Lab Policies

In addition to the general laboratory rules set by USC, users are asked to observe the following procedures that govern the operation of the lab and use of lab resources. .

  1. The lab operational hours are 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday. Access to the lab outside of the operational hours is discouraged, however, in the case of special circumstances, requests for after-hours access can be submitted to the lab manager. Use of the lab is limited to those instruments for which a reservation has been made.
  2. Use of the instruments must be scheduled at least 24 hours in advance using the online scheduler; walk-ins are discouraged although occasional exceptions may be granted by the lab manager.
  3. It is the user’s responsibility to use the instruments in a responsible manner. Users need to contact the student tech-in-charge or the lab manager if technical assistance is needed. Damage from misuse will result in charges for repair costs.
  4. The lab is dedicated to assisting users with use of the instruments. Instruction manuals and quick guides are kept in the drawer next to the individual instruments. Users are not allowed to take any manuals or guides from the lab. In addition, for users’ convenience, electronic versions of the manuals and guides are available on the computers adjacent to the instruments in a folder on the desktop.
  5. Users are prohibited from moving equipment within the lab or removing equipment from the lab.
  6. Users are encouraged to prepare assays in their own labs. However, the lab does have a designated workspace for investigators who have limited lab space and for applications that require preparations immediately before using the instruments. Users are asked to 1) use the workspace for any assay preparations; 2) keep the ice buckets or any other containers within the workspace; placement near or on the instruments is absolutely prohibited; 3) make sure assay plates are removed from the instruments when experiments are finished; and 4) clean the bench area before leaving.
  7. When transferring data from lab computers, users are required to scan their transfer devices with the designated computer in the lab and make sure there are no viruses on devices.
  8. Laboratory staff must follow the same lab operational procedures and the chargeback policy that apply to all users.

Contact Us

Lab Locations:

USC Health Sciences Campus
USC School of Pharmacy
1985 Zonal Avenue
PSC building (please see individual instruments for lab number)
Los Angeles, CA 90033

Liana Asatryan, PhD
Research Assistant Professor
Co-Director, Translational Research Laboratory
PSC 400
Tel: (323) 442-1554
E-mail:

Jennica Zaro, PhD
Research Assistant Professor
Co-Director, Translational Research Laboratory
PSC 406
Tel: (323) 442-1933
E-mail: