Use of Shear and Compression for Preparing Chromosomal Spreads of Single Cells

Technology #16509

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Tanmay P. Lele
Wallace Gregory Sawyer
Managed By
Lenny Terry
Assistant Director 352-392-8929
Patent Protection
US Patent Pending

Prepares Chromosomal Spreads to Correlate Individual Cells to Disease Markers

By applying shear and compression to mitotic cells, researchers can prepare chromosomal spreads of individual cells, allowing them to map a given chromosomal spread to the corresponding nucleus and cell that housed it. Identification of chromosomal changes is a way to detect different types of cancers. To take a karyotype (an analysis of a cell’s chromosomes) preparing a chromosomal spread is necessary. Traditionally, researchers have prepared chromosomal spreads by dropping many cells against a solid surface, which makes it difficult to correlate a single cell’s chromosomal spread with the observed characteristics of cells and nuclei or their phenotypes. This limits researchers' ability to track the ways in which altered chromosomes contribute to abnormal cancer-related nuclear shapes.

Researchers at the University of Florida have developed a way to apply shear and compression to mitotic cells for preparing spreads of single cells, making it possible to correlate chromosomal spread with the selected cell for imaging and additional observations.


Prepares chromosomal spreads from single cells to map the spread to the corresponding image of cell and nucleus


  • Allows correlation of the chromosomal spread of a single cell to the shape of its nucleus and cell of origin, making detection of cancer markers more accurate


This preparation of chromosomal spreads applies shear and compression to mitotic cells. Images of the chromosomes are captured, and then compression force is applied on top of the cell while observing the cell simultaneously on the microscope. Images are then captured after compression of the optionally osmotically swelled cell. The before and after images can be correlated, solving the problem available spread preparation technologies have: the inability to map the spread to cell and nucleus of origin.