Tissue processing — The Imaging facility has a fully programmable Renaissance Automatic Tissue Processor (Ventana) that can handle up to 350 tissue cassettes per run. Use of this equipment allows tissues to be fixed in formaldehyde (or other fixative supplied by the user), dehydrated, cleared and infiltrated in paraffin. Samples are then oriented and embedded in paraffin blocks using a Leica Paraffin Embedding Center. Individual users with minimal training can operate the tissue processor and embedding center, or Imaging personnel can operate the equipment for a nominal fee. To avoid scheduling conflicts with this equipment, users are required to notify Imaging staff 24 hours in advance of need.
Slide preparation — Paraffin sections (0.5 — 60 mm) are cut on a fully automated Leica RM 2155 Rotary Microtome, or a fully automated Ventana 300 series Rotary Microtome equipped with a disposable knife holder. The microtome can be operated by trained OMRF and OUHSC personnel or by the Imaging staff. The facility is equipped to routinely stain paraffin sections with Hematoxylin and Eosin (H&E), performed either by individual labs or Imaging staff. Other common stains are also available through the facility, but these, and more unusual staining procedures, should be performed by the user.
Cryosectioning — A Leica CM3050 research cryostat (provided by Dr. Paul Kincade – OMRF) is housed in the Imaging Facility to obtain frozen sections (2-60 mm) of fixed or unfixed tissues. Sample preparation for the cryostat includes freezing and embedding fixed or fresh tissues in the freezing medium. Trained users are allowed to operate the cryostat, or the Imaging staff can obtain cryosections for untrained users.