Applications: Compound Delivery: NanoCell

Acoustic Compound Delivery

1 x Rbt Denso Robot   1 x Slr Automated Heat Sealer
3 x Mcd MicroDock   1 x Slr Automated Heat Seal Remover
1 x Pip Acoustic Dispensing Device   1 x Dsp Single Reagent Dispenser
1 x Car HighRes AmbiStore D   1 x Cfg Automated Plate Centrifuge
1 x Car HighRes NanoServe          


This system is a HighRes NanoCell configured for acoustic compound delivery. This system is typically used for generating "assay-ready plates", containing only nanolitres of compounds in DMSO. The capabilities include plate-to-plate replication, cherry picking or dose response creation with the acoustic dispensing device. With an industrial robot arm at its center, this small platform is capable of hours of unattended operation.

       System Key Advantages  |   Cellario Protocol Design  |   Options for Data Integration  |   Cellario Key Advantages

System Key Advantages

Reconfigurable - Use the MicroDocks to reconfigure this compound delivery NanoCell with dispensers and plate readers to build a secondary screening NanoCell

Sustainable - As liquid handling technologies change and evolve, you can undock older instruments from the system and swap them for new ones. The docking technology makes it simple to efficiently incorporate the latest technology advancements.

Expandable - Link this NanoCell to a second one at a later date to expand your system. For example, add a second acoustic dispenser if your compound output increases.

Cellario Protocol Design

Cellario is HighRes Biosolutions’ dynamic scheduling software package. We use it to control all our integrated systems, from the compact NanoCell to larger multi-robot MicroStar systems.

Starting from the hardware layout for this NanoCell, we can build a Cellario protocol to see how each of the instruments on the system could be used.

The screen shots to the right show a simple source-to-destination plate replication protocol. The source plate’s heat seal is removed prior to the acoustic liquid transfer, and a resh seal applied afterwards. The destination plate is back-filled with DMSO after the transfer, heat sealed and then centrifuged to ensure the integrity of the completed plate.

Key Design Elements:
  • Cellario supports multi-threaded protocol design; for this protocol one thread is used for source plates and one thread for destination plates
  • The Transfer operation is used to merge the two threads together – bringing one source and one destination plate to the acoustic dispenser and then executing a defined method
  • In this case, the acoustic transfer method is a simple 1-to-1 replication protocol – the method file to be used by the acoustic dispenser is a parameter defined by clicking on the Transfer icon. A similar protocol design could also be used to support cherry picking and dose response work.
  • The start and end locations for labware in each thread are defined at the top and bottom of the workflows

Options for Data Integration

Cellario is designed to support a wide range of data integration requirements, essential for Compound Management applications.

Upstream - Orders are created against specific Protocol Designs and used to run the system

No Data Integration / Ad-Hoc Processing - Cellario incorporates an Order Designer GUI, allowing users to manually create orders

In-House/Commercial Sample Management Software - Cellario supports the use of external applications to generate orders by inserting records into the Cellario Oracle database via PL/SQL Stored Procedures API. For systems with online plate or tube rack storage, API level ordering can be used to request labware by external barcode from a persistent inventory.

Midstream - Monitor the status of the system and receive event notifications

Error and General Notifications - Receive mid-run notifications of system errors and warnings or general prompts for user interaction, for example to refill consumables or empty waste. Compatible with email or web services.

Downstream - As orders are processed by the system all plate-based transactions are logged in real-time in an Oracle database

Plate-Based Information - Cellario can automatically output source/destination barcode mapping. Custom SQL queries can also be applied to extract specific information. Manual, file-based and direct database approaches are all supported.

Well-Based Information - Cellario can be configured to format and then output liquid handler log-files to specific locations, to enable detailed well-level information to be integrated into the downstream result-analysis phase

Cellario Key Advantages

Error Recovery - Recover your active order and all data to the point of failure, even after whole system power outage. Critical instruments (such as the acoustic dispenser) can be fitted with a UPS in the MicroCart to ensure started operations will complete. Configurable email notifications keep you informed of any errors or warnings.

Device Drivers - Primarily used by Cellario for automated processing, they can also be used by operators in off-line mode, providing a consistent user interface across many device types. Our device drivers are continually developed to ensure systems run as efficiently as possible – for example, adding a temperature tolerance parameter to a heat sealer driver
to reduce waiting times.

Run-Time Editing - This feature allows samples and parameters to be adjusted while your order is "live" on the system. React to unexpected situations – for example, if an acoustic dispenser method file has been moved or corrupted, the operator can now adjust the file path that all subsequent plates will reference - without having to reset the active order.

Scripting Components - Use Cellario's Process Executor operation to run custom scripting components. With multiple languages supported (for example, Java, VB or .NET), scripts have access to a number of run time variables including plate number and barcode. On this system a script could be used to capture the barcode of each newly created destination plate and register it as a new sample in a customer LIMS.