Using the Azure c600 to Study Innate Immunity

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Customer Spotlight: Thiago Soares, PhD, National Institute of Health

Azure Biosystems: What is your current position?

Thiago Soares: I have been a Postdoctoral Fellow at the NIH/NIAD, in Bethesda, MD for the past 3.5 years. Before, I worked as a Postdoctoral Associate for one year at the University of Massachusetts Medical School in Worcester.

AB: Describe your current research focus in one sentence

TS: We are interested in innate immunity events triggered by disease vectors or the parasite itself that could impact, on the therapeutical point of view, the course of vector borne diseases.

AB: When were you introduced to Azure and our Western blotting products?

TS: In 2017, I arrived at the NIH and was doing a lot of westerns blots- this is when I was introduced to the Azure c600 Imaging System.

"I instantaneously got excited about the [Azure c600]: the layout was very simple, it was compact, and had a user-friendly software- so for me, it was very convenient."

Thiago Soares, PhD, National Institiute of Health, Bethesda, MD

AB: Before having the Azure c600, how did you image your Western blots?

TS: I was mostly using x-ray film developers and I had developed some Western blots using alkaline phosphatase, a chromogenic HRP alternative.

AB: How did your research change when you started using the c600?

TS: With regards to chemiluminescent Western blots, they became very fast and simple. The c600 has a very attractive feature which automatically calculates the capture time, making western blots very easy to image well. In addition, digital systems produce images of very high quality and with almost undetectable background. The c600 is fast, user friendly, and produces high quality images.

AB: What inspires you about the field of innate immunity?

TS: Learning and acquiring new information really fuels my mind. Ultimately, we are helping people by advancing research and acquiring knowledge to eventually produce vaccines or other therapeutic interventions.

AB: How does the c600 fit into your research projects?

TS: The most recent project that I used the c600 was for targeting Hemeoxygenase-1, an enzyme activated by macrophages after vector bites which acts as a robust immune modulator affecting neutrophils and macrophages effector function. The c600 was used to target protein expression in this study.

AB: What are you hoping to accomplish this year?

TS: I’m hoping that I’ll be able to transition from a Postdoc to independent researcher and have my own lab and team, staying within innate immunity field.

Watch our webinar with Thiago where he dives into the basis behind his research here.

AB: How did you transition from chemiluminescence to fluorescence?

TS: The workflow is pretty much the same, do I didn’t experience much difficulty. I had to spend some time optimizing the detection and figuring out the best channels to reduce background. The best thing I got out of switching to fluorescence is quantitative immunofluorescence as a Western blot alternative. I’m excited to try detecting quantitative immunofluorescence in a 96-well plate- you can acquire new information you won’t get in a traditional Western blot.

KEEP READING: Check out this blog on quantitative immunofluorescence in 384-well plates

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