Molecular Surface Interaction Network Laboratory

Our Molecular Surface Interaction Network Laboratory houses equipment that analyses interactions on the nanoscale. This includes interactions between proteins, peptides, antibodies, small molecules, carbohydrates, cells and materials.

Instruments and Capability 

  • Surface plasmon resonance is an optical technique that enables label-free real-time detection of small molecule/protein/peptide/antibody interactions. This technique is widely used in industry for drug and antibody development. This instrument provides kinetics, stoichiometry and affinity measures. The systems each have four channels and are capable of auto-sampling, allowing multiplexing of experiments for high throughput. The Biacore T200 is optimised for a broad range of molecular interactions while the Biacore S200 is specialised for small molecule interactions.

  • Quartz crystal microbalance with dissipation monitoring is a gravimetric technique that allows label-free, real-time measurement of interactions between surface immobilised materials, molecules or cells. Kinetics, stoichiometry and viscoelastic measurements of the binding events with ng/cm2 resolution can be obtained. The QSense Analyzer system has four channels allowing multiplexing of experiments for high throughput. It is equipped with an electrochemical module allowing simultaneous electrochemical impedance spectroscopy measurements and a cell module enabling simultaneous microscopy imaging. 

  • The BLItz interferometry-based biosensor enables label-free real-time analysis of protein interactions in a minimum sample volume of 4 μL. It is particularly suited to the determination of a particular protein in a crude or purified sample, analysis of binding kinetics, protein/antibody quantitation and rapid immunoassay development. This is a single channel, manually operated instrument and ideally suited to simple and low volume experiments. 

The network lab currently supports users through: 

  • Advice on instrument selection 
  • Advice on experimental design 
  • Training to independently use the instruments 
  • Training to analyse, model, present and interpret data 
  • Assistance with data analysis, presentation and interpretation for publication 
  • Option for staff operated data acquisition, analysis and interpretation 

 

Location & Access 

The Molecular Surface Interaction Network Lab is in Building E26, Level 2, Room 2002 within the Bioanalytical Mass Spectrometry facility of the Mark Wainwright Analytical Centre. 

Users are inducted into the Network Lab and provided with swipe-card access (Mon-Fri, 8am – 6pm) to the facility and access to the ACLS online instrument booking system. Once instrument training is complete, users can apply for continuous instrument and facility access. 

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Fees 

Once users are trained to independently operate the instruments, research groups are charged $30 per hour capped at $600 per year for user-operated access to the instruments. This fee supports the servicing requirements of the instruments, buffers to operate, maintenance costs and the purchase of routinely used chips for users to trial new experiments. 

Network Lab staff operation of the instruments, data analysis and interpretation are each charged at $80 per hour.  Automated operation of the instrument after setup by staff (Biacore only) is charged at $20 per hour.