Flow cytometry is used to isolate and quantify specific cell populations and provide quantitative information pertaining to viability, DNA content, mitotic activity and protein expression patterns of specific cell types. Recent advances have allowed for the purification of viable populations of neural stem cells, neural crest cells and post-mitotic neurons using flow cytometry. QBI’s Flow Cytometry Facility has a technological capacity that is rivalled by few institutes in the world and managed by specialised staff who are developing new applications and methodologies.

BD FACSymphony™ S6 Cell Sorter

The BD FACSymphony S6 instrument is the most advanced cell sorter in the facility that offers six-way sorting and supports analysis of up to 28 parameters, with five excitation lasers (UV 355nm, violet 405nm, blue 488nm, yellow/green 561nm and red 635nm).

This advanced platform features an ultra-quiet electronics system adapted from the defense industry that improves detection sensitivity to enable the sorting of rare cell types.

The BD FACSymphony™ S6 allows the sorting of complex hierarchies of populations identified with up to 26 colours. Up to 26 parameters can be used to define populations deep in the hierarchy, and six of them can be sorted at any one time allowing precise isolation of the populations of interest for downstream assays.

The BD FACSymphony™ S6 low noise electronics, highly sensitive PMT detectors and advanced optics designed to maximise signal collection. Coupled with the BD patented gel cuvette, these features enable excellent resolution of dim populations.  Other features like index sort and tray position information permit the identification of the surface phenotype of every cell deposited in a multiple position device like a 96-well plate, and the linking of post-isolation results to each sorted cell. It is housed in a ClassII biological cabinet with an additional AMO system.

BD FACSAria Cell Sorter 

This high capacity cell sorter is fitted with 14 fluorescence detectors, 3 excitation lasers (Blue 488nm, Violet 405nm & Red 633nm) multi-well plate cell deposition option and aerosol management is ideally placed to fulfil the research needs of neuroscientists requiring more routine multi-parametric cell sorting.

BD Influx™ Cell Sorter

The BD Influx™ cell sorter is equipped with five excitation lasers (ultraviolet 355nm, violet 405nm, blue 488nm, yellow/green 561nm and red 642nm) and has a flexible detection configuration with a number of filter set options, detecting up to 16 parameters (14 fluorescence channels, forward scatter and side scatter). 

This high-end cell sorter offers 4 nozzle sizes (70um, 86um, 100um and 140um) and is capable of sorting speeds of up to 70 000 particles/second. It can simultaneously sort 1-4 populations into a variety of tube sizes, as well as single/multiple cell deposition onto a variety of plate/slide types. It is housed in a class II Certified laminar flow cabinet.


Analysing flow cytometer that can simultaneously detect as many as 18 fluorochromes, which are excited from five individual lasers (UV, 407, 488, 561, 633nm). This instrument increases QBI’s analytical capabilities by providing additional excitation wavelengths and making available some of the sorter time that is currently dedicated to analysis.

BD FACSymphony™ A5 SE Cell Analyser

The BD FACSymphony™ A5 SE cell analyser is a fluorescence-activated, spectral-enabled cell analyser that can choose between spectral or compensation-based cell analysis to meet different flow cytometry needs.

Equipped with five excitation lasers (UV 355nm, violet 405nm, blue 488nm, yellow/green 562nm & red 633nm) and 50 detectors for maximum coverage of the fluorochrome emission spectrum, increasing dye flexibility and number of simultaneous colours.

The BD FACSymphony™ A5 SE has high performance PMT’s for enhanced resolution, and the ability to resolve critical cell populations with high autofluorescence using autofluorescence unmixing. The instrument also has a high throughput sampler (HTS) option for fully automated sample acquisition from microtiter plates.


For further information on this facility please contact Virginia Nink.