Toxicology and Pharmacology Shared Resource

The Department of Molecular Medicine Virus and Gene Therapy Toxicology and Pharmacology Shared Resource performs laboratory assays and preclinical studies to support investigators involved in the clinical translation of virus, gene and cell therapies from bench to clinic. The services provided are:

In vivo animal studies

This service enables investigators to design or execute preclinical efficacy and toxicology studies. First, the study goal is reviewed and cost for services accepted. Then, services include final study design, drafts of the proposed study protocol, IACUC Central approval and execution of the in-life study. Our laboratory has animal research experience with mice, rats, rabbits and monkeys and is familiar with SOP-driven studies. In-life QA audits by the sponsor or an external auditor can be requested as needed.

Small volume blood sample and endotoxin analysis

Abaxis VetScan HMII Hematology Analyzer
Abaxis Piccolo Xpress Chemistry Analyzer

Blood analysis allows investigators on Mayo Clinic's campus in Rochester, Minnesota, to obtain a comprehensive hematology and chemistry panel using small volumes of blood. Blood analysis services include:

  • CBC using the Abaxis VetScan HMII (Abaxis Global Diagnostics). This service combines chemical differentiation and electrical pulses for size differentiation and cell type determination. With just a 50 µL blood sample well mixed in lavender top, K2 EDTA tube (Greiner Bio-One Minicollect Tubes, Ref#450480), this machine provides the cell number (109/L) and percentages for lymphocytes, monocytes, neutrophils, basophils and eosinophils. It also provides the red blood cell (1012/L) and white blood cell (109/L) count, hemoglobin (g/dL), hematocrit percentage, mean corpuscular volume (fL), mean corpuscular hemoglobin (pg), mean corpuscular hemoglobin concentration (g/dL), red cell distribution width (fl), coefficient of variation (%), platelet count (109/L), mean platelet volume (fL), platelet crit (%), platelet distribution with coefficient of variation (%), and platelet distribution width (fL). For best results, samples should be run within two hours of collection. Each sample is run in two minutes and printed results are provided.
  • Comprehensive Chemistry using the Abaxis Piccolo Xpress Chemistry. This service utilizes a rotor with 15 self-contained reagents that feature blood chemistry tests and give the following results: sodium (NA+) mmol/L, potassium (K+) mmol/L, total carbon dioxide (tCO2) mmol/L, chloride (CL-) mmol/L, glucose (GLU) mg/dL, calcium (CA) mg/dL, blood urea nitrogen (BUN) mg/dL, creatinine (CRE) mg/dL, alkaline phosphatase (ALP) U/L, alanine aminotransferase (ALT) U/L, aspartate aminotransferase (AST) U/L, total bilirubin (TBIL) mg/dL, albumin (ALB) g/dL and total protein (TP) g/dL. To run this test, 150 µL of blood mixed well in a green top, lithium heparin tube (Greiner Bio-One Minicollect Tube, Ref#450477) is needed and should be run within an hour of collection. Each sample is run in 13 minutes and printed results are provided.
  • Coagulation on the IDEXX Coag Dx Veterinary Coagulation Analyzer. This service utilizes a disposable test cartridge to analyze the prothrombin time (PT) and activated partial thromboplastin time (APTT). To prepare blood samples, add 10 µL of citrate to 90 µL of blood sample.
  • Endotoxin on the Endosafe PTS. This service can be run on viral preparations or cell lines. It requires 100 µL of viral sample, inserted into a disposable cartridge that contains all reagents required to perform a limulus amoebocyte lysate (LAL) test. The four-channel design allows for two positive controls, control standard endotoxin (CSE) and LAL, and two channels with LAL for testing of the samples. A printout containing the following is generated: sample EU/mL, sample % CV, spike EU/mL, spike %CV and % spike recovery.