High-throughput just got more accessible!

TriTek announces the AutoComet III, automatic image acquisition, and cross-platform data analysis system designed specifically for the high-throughput comet assay. This self-contained multi-slide hotel and imaging robot accommodate 20 standard microscope slides. Patent-pending LightTight™ construction, coupled with an optimized illumination scheme and intensified digital camera, extends comet life without the use of anti-fade. Additionally, illumination is removed automatically when cells are not being imaged to preserve fluorophore performance.

Image acquisition is accomplished through the use of proprietary auto-segmentation algorithms. Comets are also scored automatically using published and accepted equations. Results are stored in an internal, GLP-compliant database, allowing secure review and analysis via third-party internet browsers (Internet Explorer, Netscape, Firefox, Opera, Safari) on virtually any operating system (Windows, MAC, Linux, Unix).

The AutoComet™ is an automatic comet assay system designed and built by TriTek Corp. This high-throughput system is optimized for unattended collection and snapshot analysis of Single Cell Gel Electrophoresis (SCGE) data. The system steps to each sample area locate single cells, measure each cell, and records the results automatically. Patent-pending LightTight™ hardware design coupled with a high-sensitivity digital camera extends comet emission lifetime while auto-segmentation and auto-scoring algorithms increase the statistical reliability of the assay.

The AutoComet™ improves statistical confidence over manual systems by reducing fluorophore fading, doubling camera resolution, acquiring larger sample sizes in less time, and objectively determining head position. Well, statistics are computed automatically, yielding a comprehensive picture of the experiment that includes means and standard deviations in an at-a-glance format.

The workstation consists of a state-of-the-art microscope, precision motorized stage, motorized sub-micron resolution focus, cold-light epifluorescence illumination system, high-sensitivity digital video imaging system, and a current-generation personal computer with TriTek-developed hardware interface, image processing algorithms, and database software.

The robotic microscope is contained within a 15″ wide x 17″ deep x 15″ high enclosure with a darkened interior to preserve the intensity of the fluorescing cells. The system employs a minimized intensity illumination source coupled with an optimized lens solution to maximize the time a cell can be observed without a loss in detail due to light-induced fluorescence quenching. Increased camera sensitivity provides the capability to maximize the acquisition of fluorescence from a cell to improve confidence in the metrics. To preserve fluorophore performance, illumination is removed automatically when cells are not being imaged.

Key Features

  • High-resolution, a high-sensitivity digital camera that improves metrics with twice the resolution of typical analog cameras
  • Multi-user database that holds project and experiment informatics as well as comet metrics
  • Unattended high-throughput data acquisition with auto-segmentation and auto-scoring
    (~3000 comets/hr)
  • Experiment overview showing mean and standard deviation of each well
  • Barcode printing and tracking for hotel inventory and database
  • Full compatibility with Trevigen® products
  • Distribution histogram for analysis
  • Increased statistical reliability due to high-throughput acquisition
  • ColorMetric™ scoring that displays comets as 1, 2, 3 standard deviations from the mean
  • Statistical analysis coupled with industry-accepted equations
  • Auto-segmentation and auto-scoring of comets
  • Patent-pending Light-Tight™ design that allows users to work in any room lighting
  • Browser-based data analysis for multi-user cross-platform usability
  • Data export to spreadsheet format


Technical SpecsLight-Tight™ Optical Microscope

  • 10x Olympus® brightfield objective
  • Field of View : 0.56mm x 0.47mm
  • Robotic stage and focus
  • Multi-slide cassette loader
  • Proprietary USB electronics

Cold Light Illumination

  • 150 Watt tungsten-halogen bulb
  • 3200K color temperature
  • Fiber-optic light guide
  • Remote control dimmer
  • Epifluorescence excitation/emission filter set
  • SYBR Green, BOBO-3, YOYO-1
    (additional filters available upon request)

Imaging System

  • 1.4 MegaPixel digital monochrome camera
  • Gen III Ultra Blue intensifier

Personal Computer & Monitor

  • Cube PC with MS Windows XP Pro
    (8″Width x 8″Height x 12″Depth)
  • 20″ LCD Color Monitor

Barcode Label Reader

  • CDHR Class II/IEC Class 2
    compliant scan engine
  • Code 39 printing included

Optional Additions

  • Increased slide capacity
  • Robotic filter changer
    (up to 3 filter sets, standard)