Flow Cytometry Resource

The University Flow Cytometry Resource (UFCR) provides comprehensive services and training to the institutional research and educational community.

New Resource: FlowJo Portal

To increase accessibilty and minimize the cost for FlowJo software analysis, the UFCR has created a FlowJo Portal license group. For approximately $20/month per license, FlowJo Portal users will be able to access the most up-to-date version of FlowJo on any internet-connected computer. More information about the UFCR FlowJo Portal license group can be found in the Data Analysis Resources section on our website.

UFCR COVID-19 Update

Attention All Users

The coronavirus has reached MN. One established route of transmission for this virus is via contaminated surfaces. At the University Flow Cytometry Resource, dozens of people each week touch common work surfaces repeatedly (knobs, buttons, mouse, keyboard, etc.), so we have established a protocol with specific steps to minimize chances of viral transmission through this route: 

  • If you have a fever and/or are coughing/sneezing, please stay at home. We will gladly cancel any reservation at no charge due to illness.
  • Do not show up at our offices unannounced. Contact us by email or telephone to set up an appointment. Many issues can and should be solved electronically to avoid unnecessary exposure to infectious agents. 

​Using our instruments:

  • Please use this link to request a reservation on our cell analyzer instrumentation. Approval documentation for your lab MUST be on file with the UFCR for requests to be honored. Please send Sunrise plan AND letter of approval to flowsort@umn.edu.
  • Wash hands with soap and water or hand sanitizer before and after (washing stations available in each facility).
  • Wear gloves that have NOT been worn for sample or slide preparation when handling the instrument.
  • Wipe instruments and work surfaces with sanitizing wipes or 70-80% ethanol before and after use. See checklist in instrument rooms.
  • Reminder: No food or drinks in cytometer rooms.

We encourage you to continue to follow the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) guidance by taking the most basic measures to protect yourself—and all of us. Wash your hands with soap and water, cover your mouth when coughing or sneezing, and do not come to school or work when you do not feel well.

By following these guidelines we hope to minimize the chances of transmission of coronavirus or any other seasonal illness between our users and staff. We aim to keep everyone healthy, so we can stay productive. We will let everyone know when we can revert back to our normal procedures.

Please let the UFCR staff know if you have any questions.

Flow cytometry uses fluorescent probes to identify and characterize cells or particles. Cells or particles tagged with fluorescent molecules enter the cytometer via a fluid stream. The cells then pass by a series of lasers, each of which emit a specific wavelength of light. The fluorescent probes are excited by the laser and then emit light energy. The fluorescent signal is detected and amplified, then translated into an electronic signal, which is output to a computer workstation. Information about the size and granularity of a cell may be recorded, as well. The result is an electronic file containing the measured information, which may be represented in a graphical format using specific software to interpret the file. This same process may be performed on a cell sorting cytometer which additionally allows for the capture of subsets of the cells or particles to be re-used by the customer in a subsequent procedure.

 Exciting changes are happening for UFCR with the opening of the Cancer-Cardio Research Building (CCRB), funding and key internal agreements. Beginning in mid June, the UFCR will be occupying 1200 sq. feet of the new space. We are also making changes to equipment in all of our location.


Flow Cytometry Helpline

Paul Champoux
Program director

Therese Martin
Senior Scientist and operations manager
612-625-3296 (office)

Overview Video