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Five Controls for Flow Cytometry

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About Tim Bushnell
I am a technical applications scientist, who's job is to help researchers get the best possible data out of their experiments as possible. As director of research cores, it is my job to ensure that these research cores operate at the highest level to support the research of the URMC investigators while being fiscally responsible and responsive.

I also run the concierge cytometry company, Expert Cytometry ( Our focus is to provide training and education to researchers around the globe so they can maximize their return on their cytometry experiments. Specialties: Flow Cytometry, design of polychromatic panels, data analysis, quality control, core management operation, training, education

No, this is not a call for Geeks to take over the world – just a tiny part of it – the part that ensures success in all experiments or at least a good way to analyze them if they fail.

There are all too many entry points for error and variability that can be introduced into experimental measurements – and it's critical to control those points. This is especially true in Flow Cytometry where there are multiple controls essential for proper interpretation of the data.

Flow cytometry controls can be divided into 5 major classes. The purpose of these controls to ensure the instrument is performing properly, that compensation is correctly set, that appropriate gates can be drawn and the correct interpretation of your data is possible.