Product News: New Beckman Coulter gTox Flow Kit Simplifies and Automates High-Sensitivity Genotoxicity Studies

19 Mar 2008

Beckman Coulter, Inc. has introduced the gTox Flow Kit – a new flow-cytometric approach to genotoxicity testing. This mouse micronuclei assay is designed to evaluate the ability of a compound to cause chromosomal damage. It detects micronuclei formed from chromatin that are displaced as result of chromosomal breakage. These nuclei are formed outside the main nucleus of the dividing cell.

The gTox Flow assay enumerates micronucleated red cells in peripheral blood of treated mice. It is ideal for preclinical drug candidate testing, environmental testing and other academic and commercial toxicology applications. It is also one of a battery of tests that chemical companies can use to comply with stringent new REACH (registration, evaluation, authorisation and restriction of chemical substances) regulations in Europe. These regulations cover manufacturers, importers and users of chemicals.

The gTox Flow Kit, developed for the Beckman Coulter FC 500 Flow Cytometer in both single- or dual-laser excitation configurations, delivers important advantages over other micronuclei testing methods, many of which have poor sensitivity. It incorporates a proprietary (patent pending) RBC permeation method and can be performed at room temperature without centrifugation preparation.

The gTox Flow assay can be performed manually or automated on Beckman Coulter’s Biomek NXP Laboratory Automation Workstation. Because data analysis with flow cytometry is faster than with microscopy, the traditional technique for micronuclei testing, the gTox Flow assay can accumulate more cells in less time, leading to greater sensitivity. The gTox Flow assay yields first results in less than two hours.

“Flow cytometry allows researchers to easily pick cells of interest, even when they are rare in the blood stream,” commented Michel Herbert, research reagent marketing manager for Beckman Coulter. “With this technique, users can screen tens of thousands of red blood cells with ease, precision and accuracy, compared to only 2,000 with microscopy testing.”