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The Comet assay, also known as single cell gel electrophoresis (SCGE) assay, has been widely used to measure a range of genetic damage and repair in response to various potential mutagens or carcinogens, such as radiation, chemicals and drugs. The test consists of analyzing DNA migration, which appears like a comet, after individual cell encapsulation, lysis and electrophoresis. Comet assay has found many applications in:

  • human and ecological biomonitoring
  • genotoxical risk assessment
  • compounds screening in pharmaceutical, cosmetic and food industries
  • cancer studies
  • DNA reparation studies

Pathfinder™ AutoComet module provides automation of Comet assay for fast, reproductible and statistically significant comets’ analysis.

Pathfinder™ module validated by prestigious key opinion leaders within the project Comics of the 6th European Framework (contract N° LSHB-CT-2006-037575), developing comet assay and cell array for fast and efficient genotoxicity testing, in collaboration with University of Oslo, Norway.

Pathfinder™ AutoComet features

  • Capture and analysis time of one whole slide in less than 7 min (standard preparation).
  • Capture and analysis time of one well in a well plate under 3 minutes.
  • Increase of at least 32 times the work flow compared to interactive capture analysis.
  • Adapted Throughput from one to 200 slides using SFD (Slide Feeder Device). Minimal configuration 4 slides per batch.
  • Automated and instant detection with the Batch processing option.
  • Comet detection checking on screen or under microscope eyepieces.
  • Various fluorochromes supported
  • Detection feature of a fixed amount of comets to be scored
  • No Maximum number of comets countable: more than 10.000 comets in routine
  • Statistical studies on a great number of comets with integrated statistical tools (multi-histograms, scatter plots and multi-Gaussian fitting).
  • Compliant with Good Laboratory Practice & FDA requirements for data management (FDA 21 CFR Part 11).
  • Correction of halo around the head to provide accurate data.
  • Tuned to wide spectrum of cell line (in vitro) or cell type (in vivo) and staining.
  • Export option of analysis parameters

Pathfinder™ AutoComet Analysis Parameters

  • Total fluo Comet
  • Total fluo Head
  • Total fluo Head Corr
  • Tail DNA non corr, %
  • Tail % DNA corrected
  • Olive Tail Moment
  • Extent Tail Moment
  • Total length
  • Head, DNA, %
  • CometMoment
  • Tail Moment
  • Migration Length

See References

Genotoxicity of MethylPhosphate acid on In vivo mouse testicles cell line. The Comets are dyed in SyberGreen. Click in the image to learn more.

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Genotoxicity of chemical compounds on human lymphocytes. The Comets are dyed in SyberGreen. Click to enlarge the image.

It was shown in studies comparing fully automated to conventional procedure that the scoring was dramatically faster, sensitivity higher, interscorers variability lower, while the several thousands of comets scored per sample enables to use parameter distributions.

It was shown in studies comparing fully automated to conventional procedure that the scoring was dramatically faster, sensitivity higher, interscorers variability lower, while the several thousands of comets scored per sample enables to use parameter distributions. Click to enlarge the image.