Integrated Molecular Biology Laboratory

British Columbia Institute of Technology, Burnaby, British Columbia
What the facility does

IMBL enables research faculty to conduct applied research in the areas of: cancer vaccines, biomarker discovery and immune-based inflammatory processes in tumour development. Researchers are also investigating chemical and enzymatic processes to generate biofuels from biological and waste materials.

Area(s) of Expertise

Researchers at IMBL have diverse expertise in the areas of cancer biology, immunology, molecular biology, protein and lipid biochemistry, plant cell biology. Biotechnology applications include cell line engineering for controlled gene expression and protein production, cell-based assay development (with a focus on inflammatory processes) and biofuel production.

Research Services
  • Molecular biology: gene-expression analysis (RT-PCR), protein purification and analyses
  • Cell biology: animal cell culture, cell line engineering (CHO, HEK-293), tumour biology using cell-based assays that assess morphology, migration and invasion of cells
  • Plant biotechnology: cultivation of plant cells, embryos, seedlings and cultivars; histology
  • Biofuels: algae propagation, biofuel production from waste materials using chemical and enzymatic processes
Sectors of Application
  • Agriculture, animal science and food
  • Clean technology
  • Education
  • Life sciences, pharmaceuticals and medical equipment

Name of specialized facility

Name of equipment in use

Description of function

Level II Cell Culture Lab

Four biological safety cabinets

Culture of Level II cell lines or tissues

 

Four laminar flow hoods

Culture of plant or rodent cells and tissues

 

Four CO2 incubators

Culture of animal cells

 

Three inverted microscopes

Routine viewing of cell-culture flasks, dishes or plates under visible light

 

Three epifluorescence microscopes

Viewing fluorescently labelled cells

 

Epifluorescence imaging system

Capturing images of cells labelled with fluorescent probes

Molecular Biology Labs

Multilabel (Envision) plate reader

Plate-based assays involving fluorescence, UV or visible absorbance

 

Bioanalyzer instrument (Agilent)

Nucleic acid or protein quantification and quality assessment

 

Real-time PCR (ABI 3130) instrument

Quantitative PCR in microtubes or 96-well plates

 

Flow Cytometer (Guava)

Analysis and quantification of fluorescently-labeled cell populations

 

Microarray scanner

Comparative gene-expression analysis

 

FPLC (GE AKTA)

Liquid chromatography system for protein purification

 

Beckman DU800 spectrophotometer

Kinetic or static measurement of biological samples by UV or visible absorbance

 

Nanodrop spectrophotometer

Measurement of 1 uL to 2 uL of biological samples by UV or visible absorbance

Plant and Food Material Preparation

Plant growth room

Controlled light and temperature for propagation of seedlings

 

Greenhouse (appx 150 sf)

Cultivation of plants

 

Supercritical CO2 fluids extractor

Preparation of biologically active cellular fractions from plant (or other) tissues

 

Large-volume speed vacuum system

Concentration and drying of biological samples (0.5 mL-50 mL volumes)

  • Proteomics Core Facility, Centre for High-Throughput Biology, The University of British Columbia
  • iPROGEN Biotech Inc.
  • Novation Pharmaceuticals
  • Lignol Energy