Electrophysiology

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Problems with other vibratomes

  • Not able to stabilize tissue specimen
  • Shearing during the cutting process
  • shearing damages surface layer neurons
  • causes difficulty patch-clamping healthy neurons

Principles of the Compresstome

  • stabilize brain tissue using agarose embedding
  • Gentle compression during cutting eliminates tissue deflections
  • Results in smoother, evenly cut slices
  • Get healthier cells that are ideal for patch-clamp recordings!

Electrophysiology requires slicing of live soft tissues. The quality of your experiment depends on the quality of the tissue slice. Your daily productivity also depends on the quality of the tissue slice. The viability of the brain slice, especially the healthy neurons in the top surface layers are crucial to the success of brain slice patch clamp electrophysiology.

The Compresstome semi-automated VF-200-0Z and fully automated VF-300-0Z produce the highest quality brain slices fir these researches.

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Advantages Over the Cryostat

Simpler Protocol: There are only three steps for the Compresstome® protocol –tissue fixation, tissue slicing, and free floating staining. No over night sucrose incubation, no OCT compound embedding, no liquid nitrogen freezing. This saves you time and money.  It also makes the experiment much more repeatable.

Stronger signals: The Compresstome® eliminates the freeze-thaw step(s) that can lead to degradation in proteins and their antigenicities. This reduces false negative results for low level signals.

Better histology images:  There is no ice crystal formation with the Compresstome® slice. Cellular structure and histology image are better preserved. Further EM study is possible.

Wider cutting window: The cyrostat can slice tissues between 4 to 40 microns. For experiments requiring thicker slices, the cryostat slices cracks easily. The Compresstome® can cut slice thickness from 8 micron and up, with no upper thickness limit.

Convenient:  The footprint of the Compresstome® is very small. It can be easily moved around from counter to counter.

Affordable:  The total cost for the Compresstome® is only a small fraction of that of a cryostat. The savings on material cost and your time is even bigger.

Advantages Over a Traditional Vibratome

Easy to use:  The operation of the Compresstome® is simpler than that of other vibrating slicers. Close monitoring is unnecessary. You can learn how to use it by watching 2-3 short 3 minute videos online.

Thinner slices:  With traditional vibrating slicers, you start seeing slices shredding around 20 µm.  With the Compresstome®, you can consistently section slices at 3 µm.

Smoother slices:  The wavy chatter marks or vibration marks indicate the trails of the oscillating blade of the slicer. In the Compresstome®, the vibration mark is completely eliminated from the slice surface by our patented Compression technology.

High quality images:  Images of slices cut with the Compresstome® are sharper ,with fewer scratches and distortion.

Versatile:  Need to do some electrophysiology work as well? The VF-300-0Z is also great at slicing acute tissues, saving your money and lab space.

Consistent slice thickness:  The unique specimen embedding, holding and clamping mechanisms minimizes specimen movement in all three dimensions during slicing. Consistent slice thickness can be achieved. Slice thickness varies less than 5 percent of the slice thickness (250 µm), compared to 10 to 20 percent in classic slicers.

Fast cutting:  For vibrating blade tissue slicers, it takes up to 30 seconds to cut a slice. The Compresstome® takes less than 2 seconds to cut a slice.

PCLS-Precision-Cut Lung Slices

Allows researchers to observe and assess organ functions under cell culture conditions to study the metabolism of almost any organ system.

Compresstome® is ideal for all precision-cut organ system:

  • Lung
  • Liver
  • Intestines
  • Spleen
  • Kidney
  • Lymph nodes
  • Thymus
  • Skeletal muscle
  • Adipose tissue
  • Heart
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Precision-cut slices require healthy, viable tissue slices in order for metabolism studies to yield accurate results. Slicing is the first and most important step of this procedure.  The ability to cut the perfect tissue slice to minimize cellular damage is crucial for subsequent experiments. The traditional method of using a Krumdieck tissue slicer introduces unwanted tissue stretching and causes damage to the cells on these slices.

With our patented compression technology, the Compresstome® can provide healthier slices with more viable cells for your metabolism, pharmacology, and toxicology experiments.

In Situ Hybridization

Proper tissue fixture and preparation is crucial for getting the best in-situ hybridization (ISH) signals. Our Compresstome® allows you to cut thin free-floating sections down to 3 µm-thick, but without having to freeze any tissue. Slices over 10 µm-thick present problems for ISH staining, and the Compresstome® is the only vibrating microtome on the market that can section free-floating slices for ISH! Avoid freeze artifacts that can interfere with sensitive ISH staining processes by using a Compresstome®.

The VF-300-0Z with the Auto Zero-Z® feature is the recommended Compresstome®for in-situ applications.

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Fresh cervical tissue cut with a Compresstome® VF-300-0Z and processed for in-situ tetramer staining combined with immunohistochemistry.

Organotypic Cultures

The key to performing the best organotypic tissue culture is the preservation of not only the cell, but also the health of the sub-cellular structures within each cell.  The traditional approach with the tissue chopper tends to tear and stretch the tissue.  Even though some times the cells may bounce back after being stretched, its internal cellular structures are still badly damaged.

With our patented compression technology, we firmly hold the tissue in place when the sectioning is performed, providing tissue with the maximum support.  This is minimally invasive to the sub-cellular structures and provides the best slices for organotypic tissue culture.

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