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Single Cell Sorting and Isolation Platform

Single cell heterogeneity within a population is critical to its peculiar function and fate. Conventional cell-based assays mostly analyze the average responses from a cell population, without regarding single cell phenotypes. To better understand the variations from cell to cell, Creative Biolabs makes use of single cell multi-omics platforms and bioinformatic analyses to explore more detailed information for therapeutic options on precision medicine.

Your Partner in Single Cell Microdissection

As an experienced provider of single cell omics, we focus on the recent developments in single-cell sorting and isolation services, which include technologies, analyses, and some main applications. Our experts would like to summarize the potential of single cell isolation platforms, by which the precise isolation and selection of single cells from suspensions can be performed and offer separate analyses of specific fractions of clients' material for valuable data.

Technologies for Single-Cell Sorting & Isolation

Single-cell sorting is used to separate cells from sample materials according to their type. They are mostly isolated relying on differences in size, shape (morphology), surface protein expression, and others. The standard protocol is to get viable, intact cells by mechanical or enzymatic dissociation and then capture single cells from the dissociated suspension. Based on the variety of principles, current cell isolation technologies are classified into two groups.

The first one is dependent on physical properties (e.g., size, density, electric changes, and deformability), with approaches including membrane filtration, density gradient centrifugation, and microchip-based capture platforms. The most beneficial physical property is single cell isolation without labeling. The second one is based on the biological characteristics of cells, consisting of affinity approaches, including affinity solid matrix (beads, fibers, and plates), fluorescence-based method, and magnetic-based method, which are based upon cellular protein expression properties. As seen, our technologies include but are not limited to:

  • Fluorescence-activated cell sorting (FACS) - High throughput, high specificity multiple parameters
  • Magnetic-activated cell sorting (MACS) - High throughput, high specificity, cost-effective
  • Laser capture microdissection (LCM) - Intact fixed and live tissue
  • Manual cell picking/micromanipulation - Intact live tissue
  • Microfluidic platforms - High throughput, low sample consumption, integrated with amplification
  • Other methods - Flow-assisted cell sorting, mouth pipetting, serial dilution, and robotic micromanipulation.
Single Cell Sorting and Isolation Platform

Fluorescence-Activated Cell Sorting (FACS)

Single cells can also be achieved by flow sorting using FACS, either using cell-type-specific markers for a biased, targeted sample or using cells' light-scattering properties to obtain an unbiased sample.

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Laser Capturing Microdissection (LCM)

LCM is a single cell isolation method. In LCM sorting, cells do not need to be tagged by the specific antibody used for the genetic manipulation of the organism. Instead, LCM is based on selecting cells through the microscope from a part of the tissue.

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LCM is a single cell isolation method. In LCM sorting, cells do not need to be tagged by the specific antibody used for the genetic manipulation of the organism. Instead, LCM is based on selecting cells through the microscope from a part of the tissue. Conventional cell capture and isolation methods cannot easily manipulate single cells in standard Petri dishes because of the cell sizes. In this regard, microfluidic technologies emerge as potentially powerful tools for precise control and efficient capture of target single cells from a cell mixture.

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Limiting Dilution

According to the statistical distribution, the cell suspension is diluted to the point where no number of cells per aliquot is as low as a single cell per aliquot. The phenomenon of limiting dilutions has been used for decades to produce monoclonal cell cultures for antibody production through hybridomas, and for single-cell-based assays.

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Immunopanning is a single cell isolation method. Based on immunoprecipitation, Immunopanning has a comparatively high yield of cells based on the efficiency and specificity of the antibody. Although Immunopanning is somewhat expensive, it is still a time-saving technique that does not require specialized instruments.

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Micromanipulation is a method for the isolation of single cells. Depending on the operators, micromanipulation techniques can be divided into manual micromanipulation and robotic micromanipulation.

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Transcriptome In Vivo Analysis (TIVA)

TIVA is a method for isolating mRNA from a single cell in complex tissues using a photoactivatable mRNA capture molecule called the TIVA tag. The TIVA methodology is the first noninvasive approach for capturing mRNA from live single cells in their natural microenvironment.

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Methods of Nuclei or Chromatin Isolation from Single-Cell Types

For a better solution for single-cell nuclei or chromatin analysis, the expert team at Creative Biolabs offers one-stop services for nuclei or chromatin isolation from single-cell types, including INTACT, BiTS-ChIP, and NuTRAP. Please don't hesitate to get in touch with us if you need to discuss your project further or if you have any requirements.

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Cell-Specific Molecules Isolation

To isolate molecules from particular single-cell types, Creative Biolabs offers TU tagging, poly(A) mRNA tagging, TRAP, miRAP, and TaDa services. Please don't hesitate to get in touch with us if you need to discuss your project further or if you have any requirements.

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Single Cell Sorting and Isolation Platform

Isolation Parameters & Single Cell Analysis

Isolating components from a single cell is the starting point for single cell multi-omics profiling, and generally can be divided into two steps. The first step is to select a single cell randomly from a cell population. The second step is to isolate multiple types of molecules from this single cell. The success of the first collection procedure is critical for preserving the accurate expression of DNA, RNA, and protein within the cell for downstream measurements.

Before initiating a single cell analysis, isolating or identifying single cells need to be done. The performance of cell isolation technology is typically determined by three parameters. Our current techniques display different advantages for each of these three parameters:

  • Efficiency/Throughput - How many cells can be isolated in a certain time.
  • Purity - The proportion of target cells obtained after the separation.
  • Recovery - The proportion of target cells collected after the separation as compared to initial target cells in the sample.

Remarkably, we take advantage of low-throughput single-cell analysis techniques to detect specific molecular markers of single cells, such as immunofluorescence, fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH), and single-cell PCR. These methods allow the quantification of a limited number of analytical parameters in single cells. Our single-cell analysis is dedicated to being applied in many different research fields, including:

Cancer Research & Oncology Molecular Pathology Microbiology & Virology Cellular Diagnostics Neuron Research Stem Cell Research Biomedical Research Immunology Material Sciences Environmental Ecology


  • High Viability: our strategies use gentle sorting mechanisms, with higher outgrowth and improved viability of a single cell.
  • Sterile Microfluidics: we implement single cell isolation by disposable microfluidic cartridges in sterile labs.
  • Easy-to-use: The software has powerful analytical features, and the interface is easy-to-use which can guide users from samples to sorted cells quickly.

A cell is a fundamental unit of biological organisms. Thus, the isolation of distinct cell types is essential for further analysis and will be significant for clinical diagnostics and other biomedical applications. As a professional supplier of single cell omics services, Creative Biolabs largely facilitates the precise sorting of single cells in suspension, even from tiny samples, and enables clients to accomplish a comprehensive molecular analysis of a specific single cell. Please don't hesitate to contact us to know more.

! ! For Research Use Only. Not for diagnostic or therapeutic purposes.