Cytocentric Blog

Getting Started in Immunometabolism – Literature Resources for Adaptive Immunity

Lymphocytes – An Army Marches on Its Metabolism

Lymphocytes migrate between wildly different microenvironments in vivo. Metabolic pathways, integrating cell-specific and site-specific factors, are intimately tied to activation, proliferation, and differentiation of lymphocytes. A circulating naïve lymphocyte may use Oxidative Phosphorylation (OxPhos) for energy, but it is non-proliferative. Blasting lymphocytes utilize glycolysis to meet high demands for metabolites for building biomass. Memory lymphocytes, often in low oxygen niches, favor glycolysis. Competition with other lymphocytes, tumor cells and microbes as well as the physiology of local nutrient and oxygen are environmental influences. Importantly, key control molecules in lymphocyte activation, such as mTOR, HIF, and NF-kappa B, are exquisitely sensitive to pericellular oxygen. As Immunometabolism coalesces as a new field, it brings a picture of comprehensive metabolic control of immunity. Here are a few recent review papers and other literature to get you started in this new field.

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Getting Started in Immunometabolism – Literature Resources for Progenitors and Tumor Immunity

Immune cells use the well-known metabolic pathways of oxidative phosphorylation, glycolysis, and fatty acid oxidation to different extents to accomplish different immune functions. Many, many factors affect metabolic state of any particular cell. These include cell-specific factors like cell type and cell state (activation, differentiation, proliferation, migration). They also include site-specific factors such as tissue site and state (normal, disease, injury, infection). Any cell’s metabolic state can be affected by the relative availability of nutrients and oxygen. However, the immune cell microenvironment provides a new context in which to connect specific functions in immunity with physiologic conditions such as blood delivery and competition for oxygen by nearby cells or microbes. Most importantly, these new connections give us a better picture of physiologically relevant in vitro assay conditions for translatability and reproducibility.

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Cytocentric Visionaries: Tim Bushnell

What are the Key Points for Reproducibility in Flow Cytometry?Layers of Variability

Dr. Tim Bushnell is the Director of the Research Core Facilities at the University of Rochester Medical Center. He is a globally-recognized expert in flow cytometry, serving on the Executive Committee of the International Society for the Advancement of Cytometry (ISAC). He also served on the board of the Great Lakes International Imaging and Flow Cytometry Association, founded the Western New York Flow User’s Group, and is co-founder of ExCyte, a company that provides master classes in flow cytometry to academics and industry.
Here, Dr. Alicia Henn, Chief Scientific Officer of BioSpherix, talks with Dr. Bushnell about flow cytometry and scientific reproducibility.

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Cytocentric Visionaries: Tim Bushnell

Do We Need to Think About The Cells’ Environment During Cell Sorts?


Dr. Tim Bushnell is the Director of the Research Core Facilities at the University of Rochester Medical Center in Rochester, NY. He is a globally-recognized expert in flow cytometry, serving on the Executive Committee of ISAC. He also founded the Western New York Flow User’s Group, and is co-founder of ExCyte, a company that provides master classes in flow cytometry.
Previously, Dr. Alicia Henn, Chief Scientific Officer of BioSpherix, interviewed Dr. Bushnell on LinkedIn about Key Points for Reproducibility in Flow Cytometry
Here, Dr. Henn talks with him about control of the cellular environment during cell sorts.

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The GBSI BioPolicy Summit 2017 – Changing Scientific Tools for Better Reproducibility

This years’ GBSI BioPolicy Summit, in San Francisco, was focused on digital tools, technologies and automation. It was an interesting array of approaches to changing the way that biological experimentation is performed, inside and outside of the laboratory. 

Different approaches to improving reproducibility from planning experiments all the way through execution, analysis, and collaboration were there. Automation, of course, was an important component. Robotic lab operations were presented by new enterprises such as Open Trons, iBioFAB, and HackScience, as a way to improve reproducibility and save time. Outsourcing experiments entirely, through Science Exchange or Transcriptic, may be a useful approach for study replication efforts as well as discovery. Tetrascience is extending the Internet of Things to the laboratory to help predict catastrophic events, like freezer failure, before they happen. It will be interesting to see, five years from now, which of these varied approaches are the most fruitful.

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