Cell culture is a process which involves the artificial growth of cells. In this technique, culture plates, strainers, flasks, dishes and incubators are utilized to generate the most favourable conditions for the growth of cells.
CO2 incubators are used in almost every laboratory to perform cell culture applications. Different companies design them differently to offer lesser contamination and better results. However, if the device is not cleaned correctly, it can sabotage the environmental conditions and hinder cell growth.
Cell culture is one of the most widely used applications in cellular and microbiology labs. It allows the researcher to test the aging process of different cells and investigate the metabolism of diseased culture and wild-type cells. Aside from that, the method is also quite effective in diagnosing infections, and testing drug efficacy.
For research studies that require examining the growth process of bacterial, human, animal, yeast or plant cells, cell culture products can be used to perform tests.
What To Do To Avoid Failed Culture Tests:
If you are performing cell culture applications in your lab, here are some general guidelines to help you get started. The first and foremost step is to avoid contamination and use the right equipment.
Follow these tips to perform a successful cell culture examination that does not involve any errors.
Organize Your Biosafety Cabinet:
You must have all the required equipment in your biosafety cabinet prior to the experimentation. Pipette tips, conical flasks and media are some of the things that are not to be missed. Have the media and pipette tips on one side of the hood, near your pipetting hand, so you are able to reach them easily. The rest of the products stay on the opposite side, at least 4-6 inches towards the back, with grouped products 10 inches apart to prevent cross-contamination.
The practice also reduces the possibility of waving or crossing over samples, which is a common reason for contamination in cell culture items. The movement of hands over an uncovered flask, plate or open bottle can cause air particles to sway around and end up in the culture. That is why, it is essential to keep your movements subtle and slow. (D, n.d.)
Prepare For Trash In Advance:
When you sort your waste in advance, it will make the cleaning process a lot quicker. Keep one bleach-containing T75 flask or beaker on your side for media collections, and one for keeping dry items like lab wipes and pipette tips. A biohazard bucket can also be kept outside for disposing of large items, such as serological pipettes(25 ml).
Have Your Equipment And Samples Ready:
Imagine you started thawing your cells and realized then that the media required for seeding cells is not labelled or taken out. This can lead to panic and mistakes. It is also a good practice to keep a notebook in hand. This way, you’ll be able to perform mathematic calculations for progress tracking at various steps of the process. Keeping your equipment, samples and material ready will reduce the risk of errors and rushed experimentation.
Stick To One Cell Line:
We do not recommend piling up your cell lines. Pick one cell line from your biosafety cabinet and limit yourself to one experiment at a time. This is also a part of your organization, as it keeps things a lot more streamlined and clear. You may think that this practice will prevent you from multitasking, but you would be saving yourself a lot of time by avoiding the risk of contamination.
Sterilize Your Equipment:
Keep your cabinet, products and media decontaminated. Clean your biosafety cabinet with 70% ethanol solution, use gloves and sterilize your culture plates and flasks regularly. Wipe your incubator hood after each use to maintain a clean environment for your tissue culture samples. You may not be the only one using the incubator, so make sure to keep it decontaminated for any other technician who comes to perform an experiment later on.
Here are some of the best practices that will help you perform cell culture without any mistakes, contamination or miscalculations. If you are in search of cell culture apparatus, visit Molecular Biology Products to access the widest range of labware. We supply pipette tips, erlenmeyer flasks, cell culture strains, and other commonly used lab equipment.
D, D. (n.d.). General Tips for Successful Cell Culture. CST BLOG: Lab Expectations. Retrieved May 26, 2022, from https://blog.cellsignal.com/general-tips-for-successful-cell-culture