FACS™ Sample Prep Assistant (SPA) III

The BD FACS™ Sample Prep Assistant III (SPA III) enables walkaway sample preparation for clinical labs. The SPA III aliquots blood and reagents into daughter tubes, adds lysing solution, and mixes the sample according to the preprogrammed or custom protocols to automate workflow and increase efficiency.

Automating flow cytometry sample preparation with the SPA III speeds processing for labor-intensive manual steps, minimizes variability by reducing errors, and frees technicians’ time for other tasks.


  • Improves laboratory workflow efficiency and frees up technician time to perform other tasks
  • Accelerates sample processing
  • Reduces reagent waste in a single dispense compared to the SPA II
  • Handles a variety of blood collection tubes to support a wide range of applications
  • Reduces errors caused by pipetting variability

Automated Tasks Speed Processing

Automating a range of manual sample preparation tasks, the SPA III aliquots blood and reagent into daughter tubes, adds lysing solution, and mixes the sample according to preprogrammed or custom protocols. Incubation can be performed outside the system, freeing the system to process the next set of samples. By automating manual steps, the SPA III minimizes interaction with potentially infectious samples, thereby reducing exposure to biohazards.

Flexibility in Blood Collection Tubes

The SPA III now supports a wider variety of blood collection sample tubes including several configurations of BD Vacutainer® and Sarstedt products to accommodate a range of incoming sample tube types.

Processing Improvements and Reductions in Reagent Waste

Using the SPA III, labs can realize savings in both time and cost with processing speed improvements and reductions in reagent waste. Processing speeds for multicolor IMK and TBNK assays are improved for time savings of up to 30% over the SPA II. The SPA III system also has been optimized to reduce reagent waste by approximately 20% when using the single-dispense mode.

Efficient Workflow and Maintenance

The SPA III ensures efficient workflow, allowing technicians to scan a barcode or manually enter sample information into a worklist. Patient samples are loaded into the primary tube rack. Processed samples on the BD FACS™ Loader carousel rack are loaded into a BD flow cytometer for automated data acquisition and analysis.

Predefined BD Multitest™ 6-color and 4-color panels, as well as BD Tritest™ panels, are available in SPA software. The SPA worklist can be imported into BD FACSCanto clinical software, BD™ Worklist Manager software, and BD FACSDiva™ software.

Instrument maintenance procedures for priming, rinsing, and cleaning are managed by predefined software settings. The probe change procedure has been simplified and is now performed using the software interface, further reducing exposure to biohazards. Part of a complete package of instrumentation, software, and reagents for sample prep and data acquisition and analysis, the BD FACS SPA III makes BD Biosciences the clear choice for clinical applications.

BD FACS Sample Prep Assistant III is for In Vitro Diagnostic Use.

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