The system has enabled the UK-based EpiStem to expand both the range and throughput of its services in the fields of immunohistochemistry (IHC) and histometric analysis.
The customized Ariol SL-50 is capable of providing quantifications on multiple cell parameters including size, intensity, colour, and morphology, making it possible for EpiStem to reduce the time required to perform standard IHC experiments, while expanding the scope of the data that the company can collect and analyze.
Combined with EpiStem's specialized knowledge of epithelial tissue behaviour, this increases the range of assays the company can provide to its pre-clinical research clients as well as their ability to identify targets for epithelial disease therapy.
"Prior to the installation of the Ariol system, we were using separate image analysis systems to perform IHC and histometric studies," said Dr. Cath Booth, Founder of EpiStem Ltd., and Managing Director of Contract Services.
"The new platform combines these capabilities in a unified system, and provides us with the capability to distinguish between nuclear, cytoplasmic, and membrane staining."
"Essentially, the Ariol software is performing two of our core tasks at once, while simultaneously opening new avenues of research with epithelial stem cells."
Dr. Booth continued, "The other major advantages we see with this system are its modularity and flexibility."
"While comparative systems tend to be closed-box units, the Ariol platform is highly interactive, allowing us to manipulate the software to measure specific targets."
"We've already carried out one pre-clinical trial study on skin tissue, labeling samples with four different markers, each of which was simultaneously measured and analyzed by the Ariol software."
"We also intend to use the Ariol system for objective histometric analysis of samples taken from inflammatory disease and mucositis models."
The Ariol SL-50 is suitable for a variety of applications in histology and pathology, including the identification of disease biomarkers, the study of gene expression at the cellular level.
Simon Smith, Director of Commercial Operations, Europe, Middle East and Africa for Applied Imaging commented, "Automating image analysis is key to the optimization of productivity, accuracy, and objectivity in molecular pathology."
"The Ariol system was developed specifically for these purposes with each of the platform's imaging algorithms developed for a particular type of IHC protocol or FISH (fluorescence in situ hybridization) technique."
"These are supported by a unique, trainable classifier that enables users to habituate the system to their individual lab techniques, accommodating day-to-day run variations and methodology."
"The cutting-edge applications EpiStem is applying Ariol to are perfect examples of this."
Robin Stracey, CEO of Applied Imaging, said, "The successful installation of the Ariol system at Epistem marks our first custom application."
"We are encouraged by the system's positive impact on the scope of data collected and the time savings experienced at Epistem. In the future, we plan to pursue additional installations with current and new customers."