The liquid biopsy core can perform the isolation of circulating markers such as rare cells (for example, circulating tumor cells, CTCs), cell free molecules (such as circulating cell free DNA), and extracellular vesicles (EV) in highly efficient and reproducible ways with full automation. The Core can isolate LB markers from a variety of clinical samples including blood, urine, sweat, saliva, and cerebrospinal fluid as well as others. Following the isolation, the amount (number of cells or EV particles or the mass of cell free molecules) of enriched LB marker can be counted and the marker subjected to a variety of molecular assays, such as droplet digital PCR, RT-qPCR, Western blotting, and Next Generation Sequencing. However, the isolate can be returned to the user for molecular processing in his/her own laboratory. A robotic platform can accept samples in standard tubes, such as blood EDTA tubes, and fully automate the isolation using unique technology specific to the Core. Blood samples can be seeded with a stabilizer cocktail to allow shipment of samples at room temperature to the Core (stability for up to 72 h post-draw).
Due to the robotic nature of the isolation process, the results are highly reproducible and the Core can perform 36 isolations per day. The Core has a specially designed microfluidic chip for optimal performance in terms of recovery and purity for the isolation of rare cells, cell free molecules, and EVs. The same robot can process a clinical sample for any of the LB markers by selecting the appropriate microfluidic chip.