Equipment & Analysis Software

The Flow Cytometry & Cell Sorting Unit is located on the 3rd floor of Hollings Cancer Center.

Analytical Flow Cytometry


The BD FACSVerse™ flow cytometer was engineered from the ground up to offer performance, flexibility, and ease of operation for research applications using up to ten parameters. Innovation in hardware design, and in the new BD FACSuite™ software, delivers users a seamless workflow from system setup through data acquisition, analysis, and shutdown. Our system is equipped with three lasers (407 nm, 488 nm and 640 nm) and is configured for eight colors.

BD Fortessa X-20

The Fortessa X-20 is the most powerful analytic cytometer in the BD line, delivering high-performance multicolor analysis. The FCCS instrument is currently configured to detect 16 fluorescent parameters from the 405 nm violet, 488 nm blue, 633 nm red lasers and a state of the art, high-powered UV laser (60 mW). The Fortessa X-20 is supported by FACSDiva 7 software and is fully back-compatible with previous versions of FACSDiva.

BD LSRFortessa

An innovative and proven platform for multicolor analysis, the LSR Fortessa provides power, performance, and consistency in a benchtop analytic cytometer. Our LSR Fortessa is configured to detect 10 fluorescent parameters from 405 nm violet, 488 nm blue, and 633 nm red lasers. This instrument is supported by FACSDiva v6.1.3 software with experimental protocols portable to the Fortessa X-20 and FACS Aria.

LSRFortessa Guide (PDF)

Beckman Coulter CytoFLEX LX

The CytoFLEX Platform is a revolutionary system presenting optimal excitation and emission, minimizing light loss, and maximizing sensitivity. Beckman Coulter CytoFLEX LX Platform demonstrates outstanding sensitivity and reproducibility with six excitation wavelengths (355 nm, 375 nm, 405 nm, 488 nm, 638 nm, 808 nm). Isolating and analyzing blood or cultured cells, bacteria, algae, yeasts, microparticles, and even nanoparticles like extracellular vesicles pose no challenge for this compact but powerful cytometer in any of its configurations. The only cytometer on the market with the ability to reliably detect 80 nm polystyrene beads, the CytoFLEX is a trustworthy partner in your extracellular vesicle and other small particle research. 

Imaging Flow Cytometry

ImageStreamX Mk II

The ImageStreamX Mk II System is a benchtop, multispectral, imaging flow cytometer designed for the acquisition of up to 12 channels of cellular imagery. By collecting large numbers of digital images per sample and providing a numerical representation of image-based features, the ImageStreamX Mk II combines the per cell information content provided by standard microscopy with the statistical significance afforded by large sample sizes common to standard flow cytometry. With the ImageStreamX Mk II System, fluorescence intensity measurements are acquired as with a conventional flow cytometer; however, the best applications for the ImageStreamX Mk II take advantage of the system’s imaging abilities to locate and quantitate the distribution of signals on, in, or between cells.

Cell Sorting


The FACSAria III cell sorter has three lasers (407 nm, 488 nm and 633 nm) and is configured for 10 colors plus forward and side scatter for use in complex cell sorting. It is also equipped with a temperature control system and supports 2- and 4-way sorting into 1-ml, 5-ml, or 15-ml tubes, as well as isolation into 96 and 384 well plates, facilitating single cell isolation. The FACSAria is connected to an Aerosol Management System and housed in a dedicated biosafety cabinet for biohazard containment. The instrument is controlled by a HP xw4600 workstation running FACSDiva v6.1.3.

MoFlo Astrios EQ

The Beckman Coulter MoFlo Astrios EQ cell sorter is a four-laser instrument containing (355 nm UV, 405 nm Violet, 488 nm Blue, and 642 nm Red) lasers capable of simultaneous detection of 14 fluorescence parameters for each particle. The Astrios EQ’s dual enhanced forward scatter (eFSC) technology enables you to see and sort particles over more than three orders of magnitude, from as small as 200 nm to 30 µm diameter, all at the same time. Flexible experiment design allows for 6-way mixed mode jet-in-air sorting in addition to plate-based sorting for single cell isolation. The Astrios is capable of x70,000 sort decisions/second providing high-speed, high-efficiency cell isolation. Housed in a dedicated biosafety cabinet, the Astrios is capable of sorting biohazardous samples. The Astrios operates Summit v62 software.

Mass Cytometry

Helios (CyTOF2.1) Mass Cytometer

Mass cytometry is a single-cell detection technology based on inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry. Antibodies or other reagents tagged with rare metal isotopes can be used to probe the proteome and potentially over 100 available parameters can be simultaneously measured on a single cell without the issue of spectral overlap typical for classical, fluorochrome-based flow cytometry or tissue/cell autofluorescence. The CyTOF2.1 instrument (Helios) is capable of measuring 135 different mass channels (75-209 amu) at a throughput of 1000 cells/sec.

Analysis Software

The Flow Cytometry and Cell Sorting Shared Resource has two dedicated computers (Mac & PC) for user analysis free of charge.