Research

Lipidomics Policies and Guidelines

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The process for initiating a project with the BCM Metabolomics Core varies depending on study. In the appropriate section below, please review the guidelines and forms. Once you complete the necessary steps (iLab request, sample submission form, and RFP form), core director will review the request and schedule a consultation with you to review your project, experimental design and provide you a quote. Please see this document for general guidelines in sample collection for metabolomics studies:

General Sample Collection Recommendations for Lipidomics Studies: Quantity, Preparation and Handling

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Guidelines for all Samples:

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Please notify us of any preservatives or additives that have been applied during the collection process.

Use permanent markers (e.g. Sharpie) to directly label tubes since labels may fall off when frozen.

Send an electronic document containing sample ID information—preferably in advance of sending the samples. We will supply an Excel template for your use. Send the completed file to metabolomicscore@bcm.edu

Ship samples to: 107C, Jones ACMD, One Baylor Plaza, Houston, TX, 77030

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Tissues

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1. For collected solid tissues (e.g. biopsy material), the amount of tissue/sample can vary depending upon study objectives and tissue type—typically, a 50-100 mg sample will suffice.

2. Flash-freeze sample immediately after sectioning and store at -80°C until shipped.

3. Samples are to be shipped frozen and on dry ice. Tubes should be clearly labeled with sample identifiers and include a hard copy of the list of samples to accompany the shipment. Please include all available sample information when shipping samples, excluding any patient identifiers.

Please contact us for further details on extraction procedure if desired.

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Plated Eukaryotic Cultured Cells for Lipidomics Analysis

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1. Cultures should be prepared with cells grown as defined per your individual study design.

2. Each sample should optimally contain 3 million cells, preferably 5 million cells, and at a minimum 5 million cells (Cell size will heavily impact this requirement; smaller cells require higher cell counts). No cell count can be performed on individual samples; hence it is preferable that each sample sent to us contains the same amount of cells.

3. Biological replicates: For unbiased analysis, a minimum of 3 replicate plates or wells per condition are required; 5 or more are recommended.

4. Remove as much as possible any additional solutions (media) adjacent to the sample. Three times wash with PBS and last wash count the cells.

5. Flash-freeze the pellet and store at -80°C. Samples are to be shipped frozen and on dry ice. Samples should be clearly labeled with sample identifiers and include a hard copy of the list of samples to accompany the shipment. Please include all available sample information when shipping samples, excluding any patient identifiers

Please contact us for further details on extraction procedure if desired.

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Plasma

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1. Collect whole blood in tubes and gently invert tubes 10 times and cool as soon as practical on ice. Centrifuge to separate plasma as soon as practical, transfer to appropriately labeled tubes being careful not to draw in buffy coat, and freeze (-20°C) immediately. Transfer to -80°C within 1 week.

2. Serum: Collect whole blood in serum separator tubes and follow tube manufacturer’s processing instructions. Extract serum, transfer to appropriately labeled tubes, and store at -80°C as soon as practical. Cool and freeze samples as soon as practical, store at -80°C within one week.

3. Volume - 500 μL is preferable, if available, but we can process as little as 100 μL. Limiting volume could possibly limit the amounts of requested analysis.

4. Samples are to be shipped frozen and on dry ice. Tubes should be clearly labeled with sample identifiers and include a hard copy of the list of samples to accompany the shipment. Please include all available sample information when shipping samples, excluding any patient identifiers.

5. NB: As a general sample collection guideline, 1.8 ml of whole blood will yield ~1 mL of plasma. When collecting, it is important to treat all of the samples the same to avoid variation. Materials collected for other experimental work and stored at -80°C can be used for metabolomic studies as long as all of the samples were treated the same way during the collection process. Consistency in sample collection and handling is most important.

Please contact us for further details on extraction procedure if desired.

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Urine

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1. Accurate 24-hour whole urine collections kept at 4°C during the duration are highly recommended, especially for steroid measurements. Aliquot a minimum of 2 mL after thorough mixing. whole urine If 24-hour collections are not practical or indicated, then first catch is preferred.

2. Immediately after collection, place sample at -20°C. Store at -80°C for more than 2 weeks.

3. Samples are to be shipped frozen and on dry ice. Tubes should be clearly labeled with sample identifiers and include a hard copy of the list of samples to accompany the shipment. Please include all available sample information when shipping samples, excluding any patient identifiers.

Please contact us for further details on extraction procedure if desired.

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Hours of Operation

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Monday - Friday 9 a.m. - 5 p.m.

(Note: Sample should be submitted before 3 p.m.).