FAQ

  • How do I sign up as a new user?
  • Where are you? What are your hours?
    • Top floor of the Dental Tower, room D11-41.
    • Hours: 8:30-4:30 M-F, closed UF holidays
    • Phone: 273-7749.  Email: molecular@ufl.edu
  • What equipment is available for self serve?
    • Microtomes, cryostat, embedding station, Zeiss microscope- See Equipment.
    • Bring your own microtome/cryostat supplies or purchase from the Core.
  • What are your turnaround times (TAT)?
    • These are approximate times as they will depend on current workload as well as the complexity of your submission.
    • If you need a quicker turn around time, please ask staff to expedite.
    • Process and embed fixed samples (P&E)- 1-3 days. Samples are placed in a paraffin processor in the afternoon to run overnight. Embedding starts  the next morning and samples are ready by mid morning. Processing is performed when there are enough samples to keep operating costs as low as possible.
    • Unstained slides- 0.5-1 day depending on the number of blocks, # slides/block, and any special requests for sectioning.
    • H&E and special stains- 1-3 day.
    • IHC: 5-10 workdays, depending on current workload and complexity of your request.
  • How do I fill out the Submission form?
    • Download and save the WORD form on your computer.
    • Fill in the required fields and check all boxes next to the services you need.
    • If making tissue blocks, fill in the table for cassette IDs or send list in Excel.
    • Fill in any special requests and talk to a staff member when you drop off your samples.
    • Email the completed form to molecular@ufl.edu.
  • Do you accept clinical samples?
    • Only for research studies.
  • How do I submit the samples?
    • Bring tissues in cassettes in a leak proof container labeled with the PI’s name and container solution (PBS, 70% ethanol). Let us know if you want your container returned otherwise it will be recycled.
    • Sign the log form at the submission counter and leave your samples on the counter.
    • Provide slide boxes or purchase from the Core when getting back slides.
  • How do I know when my samples are ready?
    • You will be notified by email.
    • Pick up your samples where you dropped them off.
    • Initial and date the original submission form and leave it in the red folder.
    • If you want an electronic copy of the services performed, ask at pick up or request by email.
  • How do I fix and prepare the samples before submission?
    • Discuss your project with Core staff to ensure optimal results for your experiments. There are many good online links.
    • Adequately fix your samples and transfer them to 70% ethanol or PBS before bringing them to the core. Minimize time in ethanol to no more than 10 days.
  • What size should the tissue samples be?
    • Optimal is not thicker than a nickel or 3-4 mm.
    • If your sample touches the cassette sides, they are too big. If they touch the lid, they are too thick.
  • How do I label the cassettes?
    • Label cassettes with #2 pencil or solvent-resistant markers (listed below). Labels with Sharpies and some other ink pens can wash off during paraffin processing.
    • Approved marking pens include:
      • Cancer Diagnostics Moist Marker Plus from Lab Safety Supply
      • HistoPrep Pen from Fisher Scientific
      • Klinipath KP Marker Plus from Mercedes medical
      • Stafmark Pen from Statlab Medical Products
  • Will your lab accept samples in other fixatives besides NBF like 4% paraformaldehyde?
    • Yes- all fixatives are accepted.
    • Transfer your fixed samples out of fixative before submitting so you can determine the duration of fixation and keep consistent between experiments.