Infrastructure update: The new Spatial and Single Cell Biology platform (SSCB)
A new platform has been born at SciLifeLab – the Spatial and Single Cell Biology platform (SSCB). As the name implies, the platform provide service and focus on technologies for studying different omics in isolated single cells, or in the spatial context of tissues.
The SSCB platform offers researchers to apply the most recent single cell (sc) sequencing methods for isolated cells, through the Eukaryotic single cell Genomics unit (ESCG). Users that then want to further explore, complement and validate the sc data can proceed to spatial omics methods. The platform offers service with the 10x Visium technology for global transcriptome analysis, in situ sequencing for a more targeted gene panel of 200-300 transcripts, or moderate to highly multiplexed imaging of proteins using immunofluorescence (IF) and the CODEX technology. From early next year, the CODEX platform will be complemented with the new instrument from Lunaphore, allowing for multiplexed IF staining using off she shelf primary antibodies.
Although these technologies were offered at SciLifeLab before 2021, they were scattered across several platforms and with limited coordination and insight between the units offering them.
“Offering these technologies within the same platform makes it easier for us to provide better service to the community. We also see many operational synergies between the units that can be integrated over time”, says Charlotte Stadler, Platform Co-director, Platform Coordination officer and Head of the Spatial Proteomics unit.
The new platform also has two new units; the Advanced FISH Technologies and the Spatial Mass Spectrometry. These units further broaden the possibilities with spatial omics by enabling detection of specific genes or transcript at high sensitivity (single molecule) and by imaging small molecules like neurotransmitters, metabolites and lipids as a complement to DNA, RNA and protein readout.
“We used to be a pilot facility since 2016 and we really look forward to be part of this newly formed platform where our expertise fits very well with the other spatial omics services offered”, says Prof Per andrén, Platform Scientific Director at the SSCB.
While the platform mostly offer “stand alone” service with separate technologies, the goal and ambition of the SSCB platform is to develop protocols that allows for intregrated data generation and analysis of several technologies on the same sample.
“This will enable a multi omics approach with a more in depth and comprehensive view of biological systems in action”, says Prof Mats Nilsson, Platform Director of the SSCB.
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