HOODS ARE THE OTHER WORKHORSE OF THE CELL CULTURE LAB.
People depend on their hoods.
INDUSTRIALLY HARDENED: Decades of experience and hundreds of thousands in the field. Reliable. Not just cells, but all other clean environments.
DESIGNED FOR COMFORT: Hoods are where people spend time with cells. Hood manufactures have done a good job making a comfortable appliance. They are ergonomic. They are quiet. They are not only useful for cells but also any other process people need to keep clean.
PLEASING APPEARANCE: The are good looking. You can even get your hoods and incubators to be color coordinated to match.
CONVENIENT TO CLEAN: They are easy to clean: large coved corners make frequent washing easy, and the front slides all the way up to easily get inside for cleaning. Some even have convenient drains for excess decon solution run off.
HIGHLY ENGINEERED MASTER OF AIR HANDLING: They do a tremendous job of moving a lot of air, and a tremendous job cleaning it in the process.
ECONOMICAL: They are very economical considering the large amount of steel. That's because the manufacturer gets a tremendous economy of scale by buying in bulk the same materials to build incubators, refrigerators, freezers, ovens, and other appliances. If they weren't priced low, not many would sell due to many excellent brands and stiff competition.
However, sometimes cells need more!
Sometimes Cells Need Physiologic Simulation During Handling
Conventional BSL2 hoods do not control any cyto-parameters (temperature, CO2, pH, O2, etc.). People processing cells in a hood usually hurry because they know their cells are exposed to suboptimal conditions. As soon as the media turns pink, we know from Biochemistry 101 that the 3-dimensional conformations of all the macromolecules on the cell surface (receptors, ligands, ion channels, etc.) lose their shape and therefore their function due to non-physiologic pH. Regarding O2, the exposure to air during cell processing in hoods can confuse the action of O2 regulated genes. It can totally squelch the hypoxia response. That's to say nothing about the suboptimal temperature. In fact, cells left in the hood long enough will die.
CYTOCENTRIC SOLUTION #1 - Transform/modify open BSL2 hood to closed hood with glove front, attach air lock buffer chamber, and retrofit modular temperature, CO2, and O2 controls. (Hood + BSL Closure and Control Kit )
CYTOCENTRIC SOLUTION #2 - Attach integrated Xvivo System closed hood via buffer chamber for processing open cultures and limit use of open hood for staging closed cultures and supplies before entry, and other clean procedures. (Hood + Xvivo processing chamber with buffer chamber)
Sometimes Cells Need Better Protection
Hoods are designed to work as a clean benchtop for people. Cultures are typically carried to the hood, and cells are somewhat protected while inside the hood. However, the trip from the incubator or bioreactor across the room represents a big gap in protection. This handicap can be overcome by providing protected transport chambers to and from the hood, or integrating closed incubation and processing with the hood:
CYTOCENTRIC SOLUTION #1 - Transport cultures across the lab or across the building in closed transport chambers to avoid contamination risk on route. (CO2 incubator with Subchamber Culture System )
CYTOCENTRIC SOLUTION #2 - Integrate incubation and processing with hood so cultures never have to come out into the room. (Xvivo System with CO2 incubator module and airlock passthrough to hood)
(Xvivo process chamber with 4 incubation chambers and passthru to hood)
SOMETIMES CELLS NEED MORE... than people!
That's where we come in. Sometimes cells need full time protection. Standard BSL2 hoods are only part time. It would be nice to be able to offer a Cytocentric upgrade for hoods, but it is not a good idea because it is not cost effective.