Serum or Plasma Collection for
Cytokine Analysis

Plasma

Collection tubes containing EDTA anti-coagulant are ideal for separating plasma from the cellular component of blood. Select the appropriate size EDTA tube to maintain the correct ratio of anti-coagulant to blood. For EDTA microtainers, fill lines on tubes should be followed to ensure adequate fill volume. As a general rule, larger EDTA tubes lacking fill line guides should be more than half way filled. If collecting blood with a needle and syringe, be sure to remove the needle from the syringe prior to transferring blood into the uncapped tube. Cap the tube and promptly invert the tube 6-8 times to mix EDTA with the blood. Centrifuge the samples at 1000 x g for 10 min. If there is any delay between sample collection and centrifugation, EDTA preserved samples should be maintained at 4°C until processing. Following centrifugation, promptly pipette plasma into a sterile non-additive tube suitable for -80°C storage conditions. Storage at -80°C is preferred but samples stored at -20°C can be accepted.

Serum

Serum gel separator tubes are helpful for separating serum from the cellular component of blood though non-additive tubes can also be used for serum collection. The gel material within serum separator tubes contains particles of a clot activator that assures rapid clotting of blood and prevents carryover of fibrinogen into the serum. If collecting blood with a needle and syringe, be sure to remove the needle from the syringe prior to transferring blood into the uncapped tube. Cap the tube and allow the blood to clot at room temperature for approximately 30‐45 minutes. Centrifuge the samples at 1000 x g for 10 min. Following centrifugation, promptly pipette serum into a sterile non-additive tube suitable for -80°C storage conditions. Storage at -80°C is preferred but samples stored at -20°C can be accepted.

Preparing Samples for Shipment

Serum and plasma should be stored in tubes with the lids secured to prevent leakage. The use of Parafilm™ over tube lids is recommended to prevent leakage. Tubes should be placed in a box with small compartments or a rack to prevent the tubes from being jarred while in transit. Serum or plasma samples should be frozen at -80°C and shipped on dry ice. Freeze/thaw cycles should be avoided.

When packaging samples for shipment, it is best to use an insulated (e.g., Styrofoam) box. Insulating material, such as bubble wrap, or filler paper should be packed into any open spaces in the shipping box to keep specimen boxes from jostling during transit. A copy of the submission form with testing instructions should be included in the box (on top of insulated container) before it is sealed shut.

Please send the samples via FedEx for overnight delivery. Delivery address and contact information below.

Ship samples to:

IDEXX BioAnalytics 

Attn: Lab 57
One IDEXX Drive
Westbrook, Maine 04092
idexxbioanalytics@idexx.com 

 

Helpful Hints

• Minimize time between collection and storage (below 1 hour).
• For plasma samples, EDTA anticoagulant should be used for best results.

• When collecting plasma, keep whole blood at 4°C until ready for processing.
• Following centrifugation, promptly transfer plasma or serum samples into storage tubes.

• Recommend using storage tubes that are compatible with dry ice.
• Maximum storage time for samples is 2 years stored at -80°C.

• Use Parafilm to prevent leakage in transit.

Optimal Sample Volumes:
Mouse - 60μL

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