Scientific Cores

Biology Core

The mission of the Biology Core Facility is to facilitate the research goals of individual Faculty members by providing state-of-the-art instrumentation and relevant expertise in the areas of flow cytometry, soluble molecule detection and quantification, and microscopy imaging. This is accomplished by providing a professional, efficient, timely and reasonably priced service, as well as offering continuous education and consultation in the utilization of the instruments and techniques, and analyzing generated data.

The Biology Core is where three flow cytometer analyzers (3-laser, 10-color Guava; 3-laser, 9-color Cyan; and 5-laser, 28-color FACS Symphony), a CTL ELISPOT counter, and two Luminex instruments are available for researcher’s use. Multicolor cell sorting capabilities are also available in biohazard safety level 3 (BSL-3, BD FACS Aria III and BD FACS Fusion) as well as BSL-2 (BD Influx).

All equipment is accessible through dedicated operators. All services are provided on a recharge basis. The core managers and core director are available to help with the design of custom protocols to maximize suitable data generation. Types of cell analyses include: cell phenotyping; cell proliferation and activation; identification of intra-cellular molecules (cytokines, viral products, DNA/RNA content); identification of multiple soluble human and non-human molecules (cytokines, growth factors, hormones) in body fluids; and light, fluorescent, and confocal microscopy. All core personnel are trained and certified in proper BSL-2/3 safety procedures and have decades of proper experience.

Molecular Core

The Texas Biomedical Research Institute (Texas Biomed) Molecular Services Core (MSC) provides centralized access to high throughput genomics and molecular technology and bioinformatics support for the advancement of research conducted by Texas Biomed, the Southwest National Primate Research Center (SNPRC), and external investigators. The facility provides cost effective implementation of core technologies used by multidisciplinary researchers that are crucial for achieving Texas Biomed’s goal of improving human health.

The MSC is dedicated to assist researchers in the development and implementation of state-of-the-art molecular approaches in the support of their research. The MSC is located in Texas Biomed’s Central Core Facility (the Ledford building), and is easily accessible to all research labs. The MSC is equipped with standard and specialized laboratory equipment required to conduct most genomic and gene expression applications. MSC personnel are trained in numerous technical and bioinformatic approaches. The MSC also maintains dedicated high performance computing and data storage capabilities in the Genomics Computing Center required for analysis of accompanying large datasets.

Services provided by the MSC facility include but are not limited to RNA and DNA isolation, quality determination, and quantitation from a variety of sample sources including blood, tissues, cells, and body fluids, sequencing library preparations supporting whole genome, transcriptome, exome, smRNA, ChIP, and targeted sequencing applications, onsite low and mid-output next generation sequencing services, and standard sequencing data analysis and bioinformatics for DNA, RNA, and smRNA sequencing.

Microscopy Core

The Microscopy Core facilitates and enhances research imaging in nonhuman primate models from whole animal to subcellular level. The Microscopy Core is operated by a full-time PhD level Manager and offers access to high-end instrumentation for light microscopy. These instrumentation include confocal microscopes: Leica Stellaris8, Zeiss 800 and Nikon C2 and wide field Leica DM4. The Microscopy Core team provides hands-on training, expertise and consultation services in support of studies using fixed and living preparations. The core also offers comprehensive services, from tissue preparation to publication, including support with sample collection, fixation, staining, clarification (Deep 3D), imaging and image rendition for publication. Core leadership is available to provide consultation on fluorescent imaging by Axioscan and image analysis with HALO software.

Vivarium Core

The Vivarium Core at Texas Biomedical Research Institute offers research support for rodents on a variety of infectious diseases including tuberculosis, schistosomiasis, influenza and coronavirus amongst others. The vivarium also supports small animal models of aging, Parkinson’s, and Alzheimer’s. The vivarium is supported by a dedicated supervisor and staff, and veterinary care. Animals receive daily observations and scheduled cage change outs 365 days a year with veterinary care on call at all times. Animal enclosures contain species-specific bedding and enrichment to encourage normal behavior. Procedures are in place to provide care for genetically modified and/or immunocompromised animals in addition to the already strict care used in the traditional animal strain care. Dedicated work space and basic procedural equipment is available for reservation and specialized equipment can be ordered upon request. The veterinary staff also provides complimentary training on animal handling and procedures for research personnel with capabilities to develop novel techniques to meet research ends.