Sponsored by: Life Technologies
Session ended: March, 28th, 2014, 3:00pm MST
Answers by: by David Judd, Product manager of global research sera products, Biosciences Division of Thermo Fisher Scientific (formerly Life Technologies)
The use of serum for the culture of cells may be a century old, but still a mainstay in cell culture applications. It is the foundation for many research protocols. There are many aspects to be considered in the selection, handing and use of serum. Ensuring consistent performance in given application can be achieved through selecting an appropriate product and maintaining the product throughout its use.
These topics and more will be covered during our Ask the Expert session – Serum, methods and considerations for use. If you have questions about serum – how to use it in cell culture, how to decide which type is best for you, sourcing considerations, product quality questions or any other serum related matters, please submit your questions now.
Questions & Answers
Heat inactivation of sera was originally implemented to inactivate complement which interfered in assays. The process has impacts on other molecules that may not have been quantified or evaluated. The literature varies as to the potential positive and negative effects of heat inactivation. For most cell lines in routine culture, it is likely not needed. […]» Read MoreFinding precipitates in serum is not uncommon. They can be composed of proteins, lipids, salts and any combination of these. It should not affect the performance of the serum at all. Precipitates can be minimized by careful thawing of the serum. Do not overexpose to heat and mix gently while thawing. Keep the number of […]» Read MoreTime spent in qualification of assays for any application can pay off substantially in the long run. Designing assays for qualification of sera have to be based in the specific application. There may be more than one assay required to manage the risk for a process. Characteristics may include parameters such as cell attachment, population […]» Read MoreNewborn calf serum (or calf serum) can be utilized in cell culture for a few different reasons. If a process is very price sensitive, it makes sense to design using a less expensive product. The newborn calf serum is generally more stable in price and availability compared to FBS if reliability is a key concern. […]» Read MoreThere are many functions that FBS supplies. Which ones are most important likely relies on the application. It provides attachment factors, growth factors, simple nutrients like amino acids and vitamins, stability factors for nutrients through binding, etc.The list is a very long one. These are the reasons it is difficult stop using it. I makes […]» Read MoreTo my knowledge, there is no animal serum product approved by an entity such as the FDA.Sera products from the larger suppliers are generally manufactured in facilities compliant with GMPs and ISO standards. Manufacturers may also conform to other international quality standards. Each manufacturer generally with have product lines offering a variety of testing levels. […]» Read MoreMost transection reagents recommend transfecting in serum reduced or serum free medium. There are some that are advertised to be equally as effective in the presence or absence of serum. I would be inclined to transfect serum-free to be on the safe side. Unfortunately the only way to prove anything is through testing. If this […]» Read MoreHeat inactivation of sera was originally implemented to inactivate complement which interfered in assays. The process has impacts on other molecules that may not have been quantified or evaluated. The literature varies as to the potential positive and negative effects of heat inactivation. For most cell lines in routine culture, it is likely not needed. […]» Read More