Physiological Environment Research Facility (PERF)
A major limitation to modern day tissue and cell culture is the lack of control of environmental variables (i.e. oxygen, carbon dioxide, humidity, etc.) to mimic exact in vivo conditions. As such, cells are often exposed to atmospheric and non-physiological levels of these surroundings, which ultimately confounds data analysis and interpretation. The Physiological Environment Research Facility (PERF) works to limit these artifactual environmental variables by the use of tightly-regulated atmospheric conditions for tissue and cell culture based experiments. The PERF consists of two state-of-the-art pieces of technology: A HypOxystation H135 controlled environment chamber and an IncuCyte S3 Live-Cell Analysis System. The H135 chamber is a fully-enclosed glove access workstation/incubator with the ability to alter oxygen (0-21%), carbon dioxide (0-15%), nitrogen (67-100%), humidity (0-90%), and temperature (12-45°C). The S3 imager resides inside the H135, and allows for real-time, remote monitoring and analysis of cells in both phase contrast and red/green fluorescent channels without having to change environmental conditions by removing the cells from the chamber. The facility operates on a fee for service basis and requires technician involvement due to extensive training required with each piece of equipment.