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Immune Monitoring Core


The primary function of the Immune Monitoring Core at Mayo Clinic is to provide services to characterize immune functions and associated cell populations and monitor immune responses to both specific and nonspecific stimulation.

The core supports experimental systems in a broad range of diseases and therapies that rely on human subjects in variable demographics and a variety of other mammalian species.

These are particularly important services for investigators who do not maintain the required equipment and personnel to run experiments themselves or those who wish to take advantage of existing standard operating procedures that would be difficult to establish in an investigator's laboratory.

The services include:

  • Peripheral blood lymphocyte with stimulation. Peripheral blood mononuclear cell enrichment is used through Ficoll separation with short-term culture and stimulants specific to the investigator's project.
  • Peripheral blood lymphocyte without stimulation. Peripheral blood mononuclear cell enrichment is used through Ficoll separation without stimulation.
  • Meso Scale Discovery analysis. Meso Scale Discovery's Multi-Array technology enables the detection of biomarkers in single and multiplex formats with electrochemiluminescence and pattern arrays.
  • Human T cell or B cell repertoire matrix. Includes the use of polymerase chain reaction-based detection of the entire spectrum of V family and JBeta individual amplicon products, as well as identification of specific clones by sequencing.
  • Positive T cell selection. Magnetic bead separation technologies are available from Miltenyi Biotec and Dynabeads, as well as flow cytometry.
  • Mouse matrix. Includes the use of T cell receptor on mouse samples.

Services and equipment

The Immune Monitoring Core is a relatively small laboratory with two research technologists who collectively have experience in a wide range of methods in cellular and molecular immunology. The small size of the lab is strengthened by its association with the director's independent research laboratory run by staff members, enabling efficient technology transfer.

Additional services and equipment include:

Methods in cellular immunology

  • Immune cell phenotyping using flow cytometry
  • Cell separations based on differential cell surface phenotypes
  • Immune stimulation occurring in vitro
  • Assays of cytokine and chemokine concentration used with an emphasis on multiplexed assays of cytokine and chemokine concentrations

Molecular immunology method

  • General quantitative polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and reverse transcription PCR, with a focus on genes that are involved in controlling immune responses
  • Use of a novel T cell receptor matrix that estimates the diversity of T cell repertoires in humans and mice
  • Methods for T cell receptor analysis that have shown value in a number of projects benefitting from the ability to identify and sequence receptor transcripts expressed by overrepresented clonal populations

Available equipment

  • Meso Scale Discovery Sector Imager 2400
  • Hoods, incubators and associated equipment for tissue culture
  • Centrifuges
  • Polymerase chain reaction Tetrad machines
  • Plate washers


Contact Hilary E. Blair, core manager, with questions about fees.


Guggenheim Building, Fifth Floor


  • Peter J. Wettstein, Ph.D.
    • Core Director
  • Hilary E. Blair
Mayo Clinic
Guggenheim Building, Fifth Floor
200 First St. SW
Rochester, MN 55905
  • May 2, 2013
  • ART416707