Research Core Facilities

Unity Health Toronto, Toronto, Ontario
What the facility does

Research on biological mechanisms of disease and the development of new treatments.

Area(s) of Expertise

Research Core Facilities has created an operating model of extensive shared-facility support for basic science research in the Keenan Research Centre. We provide the latest equipment and techniques, in addition to professional training and management. By reducing duplication and increasing usage, the facility offers significant savings, creating a critical mass where cutting-edge equipment and techniques are available to our scientists.

Research Core Facilities is spread over three floors and includes both common and specialized facilities, such as Flow Cytometry, Molecular Biology, and Histology. Each has a core coordinator whose primary role is to train users and provide technical expertise in the design and execution of scientific experiments. The Research Bioimaging Facility has a variety of basic and specialized equipment for image capture, analysis and display, and two coordinators are available for support.  In addition, a state-of-the-art vivarium is available, providing training and assistance and adhering to the latest guidelines and regulations.

Research Services

Flow Cytometry Core, Histology Core, Molecular Biology Core, Bioimaging Centre, Molecular Pathology Core specialty service, Research Vivarium, Tissue Bank, Microfabrication Core and 3D printing.

Sectors of Application
  • Health care and social services
  • Life sciences, pharmaceuticals and medical equipment

Name of specialized lab

Name of equipment in use

Description of function

Flow Cytometry

MACSQuant analyzers

The Flow Cytometry Core provides access to several flow cytometers and a cell sorter allowing investigation of surface proteins, cellular proliferation, apoptosis, microparticle populations and immunophenotyping as well as supporting systems to prep and analyze cells.

 

FACSAria III

 
 

FACSCalibur 1

 
 

Fortessa X20

 
 

Celigo

 
 

Molecular devices ImageXpress Micro

 

Histology

Leica TP1020 Tissue Processor

The Histology Core provides all of the equipment and expertise to safely and effectively prepare fresh or fixed tissues crucial to the investigation of tissue structure, function and pathological progression or successful intervention in preclinical models of disease or human patient samples.

 

Leica EG1160 Paraffin Embedding

 
 

Leica RM2145 Rotary Microtome

 
 

Leica RM2235 Rotary Microtome

 
 

Leica CM1900 Cryostat

 
 

Leica VT1000 S Vibrating-blade Microtome

 
 

Leica Autostainer XL

 
 

Olympus IMT-2 Microscope

 

Molecular Biology

ABI ViiA7

The Molecular Biology Core houses equipment and provides expertise to support the complete workflow for gene expression, genotyping, SNP analysis, viral packaging for gene delivery, cell electroporation for gene delivery, laser capture microdissection specialty service and other various methods to interrogate the molecular regulation of various biological processes.

 

ABI StepOnePlus

 
 

ABI Veriti Thermo Cycler

 
 

NanoString nCounter

 
 

Agilent 2100 Bioanalyzer

 
 

Captair RNA/DNA Rolling Clean Hood

 
 

Eppendorf Mastercycler Gradient Thermocycler

 

Bioimaging

Zeiss LSM 700 Inverted Confocal microscope

The Bioimaging Centre offers advanced imaging technology, providing access to state-of-the-art equipment. The list includes microscopes for routine imaging of histology stained and fluorescent samples as well as confocal microscopes providing thin optical sections of thick specimens with improved contrast. In addition, an advanced live cell imaging system allows brief or long-term imaging of samples in an environmentally controlled chamber. Several image analysis computers are also available with software to prepare data for publication.

 

Zeiss AxioObserver inverted microscope for live cell imaging

 
 

Olympus Upright BX50 microscope

 
 

Nikon Upright E800 microscope

 
 

Nikon Inverted TE300 microscope

 
 

iTHERA MSOT – Multispectral optoacoustic tomography for in vivo whole animal imaging

 
 

Heidleberg Spectralis (HRA+OCT) for multimodal retinal imaging (adapted for use with rodents)

 
 

Image analysis workstations with advanced software

 

Microfabrication and 3D printing

Class 10,000 (ISO Class 7) cleanroom space

The Microfabrication Core provides equipment and expertise in the area of microfabrication and rapid device prototyping for biomedical applications and healthcare.

The facilities include Class 10,000 (ISO Class 7) cleanroom space, multi-jet-modeling technology 3D printer for high-definition prototype devices, and general lab equipment.

In addition to the equipment, the Microfabrication and Device Development Core offers group and individual trainings, protocol development and validation, 3D modeling and device design, data analysis and consultation services.

ProJet 3510 HDPlus 3D printer

ProJet Finisher oven for support material removal

Beckman Coulter Counter Multisizer 4

Shimadzu UV-3600 UV-VIS-NIR Spectrophotometer

Microtrac S3500 particle size analyzer

Shimadzu RF-5301PC Spectrofluorophotometer

  • University of Toronto
  • Ryerson University
  • iBEST (Institute for Biomedical Engineering and Science Technology)