Investigators requiring electron microscopy services should contact Robert Langley by phone at 713-792-9142, or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org, to discuss feasibility of study. The procedure is as follows:
1. Register for an account with iLab Solutions.
2. Request services through the High Resolution Electron Microscopy Facility
3. Once we receive your request, we will contact you to arrange an appointment time for sample submission.
4. You may arrange to obtain fixative for your specimens by contacting us prior to submitting your sample.
Preparing Samples for Electron Microscopy
- We recommend a solution of 2% paraformaldehyde and 3% glutaraldehyde as a primary fixative for electron microscopy samples. Concentrations of glutaraldehyde below 3% may result in extraction, whereas concentrations above 4% may cause the sample to shrink.
- Tissues should be harvested as quickly as possible and immersed in primary fixative. The sample should have at least one dimension that is smaller than 1 mm to ensure adequate penetration of fixative.
- Monolayer cultures of cells for TEM analysis may be grown in plastic dishes. Cell cultures should be washed three times with 37ºC buffer prior to fixation to remove dead cells, cellular debris and any precipitate.
- Monolayer cultures of cells for SEM analysis may be cultured on 1 cm diameter glass or plastic coverslips (0.17 mm thick) in wells or culture dishes.
- In all cases, the fixative solution should be approximately five times the volume of the sample.
- The turnaround time for TEM and SEM analysis is approximately two to three weeks.
- Processed samples are prescreened to determine the quality of the preparation and the investigator is notified that the sample is ready to be examined.
- We recommend that the investigator come and examine the samples with the assistance of Kenneth Dunner at the microscope.
- A billing invoice is created in iLab and internal (MD Anderson Cancer Center) payments are deducted by General Accounting based on the chartfield string provided by the Principle Investigator. Invoices for external users are created by General Accounting and then forwarded to the user for payment. External payments received by General Accounting are then credited to the HREMF account.