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Time – The Forgotten Parameter in Flow Cytometry


Alfonso Blanco, PhD

Tutorial Video Abstract

In this webinar you will learn:

  • why time is a forgotten but important parameter in flow cytometry
  • how you can study a variety of temporal changes (from seconds to days in length) using flow cytometry.


Time is one of the forgotten parameters in flow cytometry. It is highly used and has to be used to monitor the stability of your instruments during your measurements, but it is also used to detect problems with lasers and detectors. For example, when you are looking at physiological changes produced by a treatment, samples are processed and analysed at different time points. The speed of these processes could be:

  •         Slow: we will be able to see those changes after a few days, i.e. changes in the immunoreaction of humans or animals that are exposed to a viral or bacterial infection or changes in the phytoplankton
  •         Medium: the reaction of the cells exposed to drugs or cytotoxic agents can be detected in a few hours
  •         Fast responses: the reaction happens in a question of seconds, like intracellular calcium.

In this webinar I will discuss the importance of time and will illustrate how to use flow cytometry to study temporal changes including fast responses such as measuring intracellular calcium changes, lipid production, nanoparticle uptake or osmotic changes.

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