Science Capability

Overview: The FACSAria II is a flow cytometer that is aversatile and has many more options than conventional flow cytometers that are on the market today. Using our FACs-ARIA II flow cytometer system, we can accurately and reliably sort and analyze different fluorescently tagged markers in different cellular preparations from complex samples, including tumor cells, stem cells, neurons, immune cells, stably-transfected cell lines and blood cells.

Faculty: Science Department: Neuroscience

Research Capacity: FACs ARIA II with sorting and analyze capability.  The FACSAria II has five lasers (5 lasers: UV (355 nm), Violet (405 nm), Blue (488 nm), Yellow/Green (561 nm) and Red (640 nm)) which makes it versatile for detecting a broad range of fluorescent tags and probes. One of the advantages of the FACSAria II is that it is a cell sorter that can be used effectively in sorting fluorescent from non-fluorescent cells.


  • Director: Professor Patrice Smith
  • Associate Directors: Professors Bill Willmore and Maria DeRosa
  • Operations Manager
  • Postdoctoral Fellows, PhD students, Masters students and undergraduates

Industrial Application

Focus: Life Sciences, Health sciences, neurosciences, chemical analysis, vaccines, blood services, environmental applications, stem cell biology, aptamers and nanotechnology. 

Project Examples:  Sorting and analysis of specific neuronal cell populations and analysis of molecular pathways involved in neurological disease, particularly the analysis of immune factors involved in response to nerve damage.  Additional use of the FACSAria II includes the detection of the binding of either antibodies or aptamers (DNA molecules that recognize and bind to proteins on the surface of the cell) to specific populations of cells within complex mixtures of different cell types, such as what you would get in blood or tissues. For example, we can detect metastasized tumor cells within whole blood or lymph by fluorescently labeling antibodies or aptamers that specifically target proteins found on the surface of cancer cells and not on the surface of normal cells (cancer-specific antigens). This can then be utilized for targeted drug delivery to the cancer cells specifically. Another way in which we use the FACSAria II is to gain an idea of how much stress the cell is under. Specifically, we look at oxidative stress; a stress that is involved in many disease processes (cardiovascular, neurodegenerative, diabetes, metabolic disorders, etc.) and may also be involved in general cellular aging. 

Engagement types and co-funding

  • R&D partnerships (up to 80% cash contributions available)
  • Contract research
  • Quality Control analysis
  • Industrial-partnered student internships (up to 50% cash contributions available)

Points of Contact: Jeff Smirle- Business Manager- Faculty of Science. 613-875-1355,

Contact Information

Jeff Smirle, Business Manager –
Faculty of Science.
Phone: 613-875-1355,

Facility Details