Large scale cell-based assays require considerable human intervention when performed manually or using stand-alone liquid handling systems. We have worked with HighRes Biosolutions to develop a fully-integrated system for complex human cellular and biochemical assays that combines the capabilities of a Prime liquid handler, SteriStore incubator, MicroSpin centrifuge, PlateLoc plate sealer, XPeel plate peeler, Envision plate reader, and MultiFlo reagent dispensers. All instruments and liquid handlers are located within a HEPA filtered enclosure to provide a sterile environment for handling cells. We will present the range of capabilities of this system including utilization of the Prime as a traditional liquid handler using Solution software or as an integrated component within the system controlled by Cellario. The Prime system is amenable to studies supporting medicinal chemistry and drug discovery including automated qPCR setup for gene expression profiling and cell-based high-content imaging for target engagement and structure-activity relationship analysis. Importantly, early assay transfer work is enabling Fulcrum to perform small molecule screens with thousands of compounds and arrayed CRISPR screening with minimal operator involvement and high data quality. The Prime system serves as a versatile platform to strengthen the drug discovery and development efforts at Fulcrum Therapeutics.
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