Yujie Liu on Cancer Stem Cells
Yujie Liu, PhD, is assistant professor in the Breast Cancer department at Sun Yat-Sen Memorial Hospital, which is affiliated with Sun Yat-Sen University in Guangzhou, China. Previously she was a postdoctoral researcher in Ju Chen’s lab at the University of California at San Diego. Dr. Liu told us about her research on drug resistance in cancer stem cells and explained why the BD Accuri™ C6 flow cytometer has become the instrument of choice in her research group.
Q: Would you tell us briefly about the research program in which you are using the BD Accuri C6?
Dr. Liu: My research focuses on breast cancer stem cells and drug resistance. Its ultimate goal is to identify cancer stem cell populations among breast cancer cells, measure their drug resistance, and understand the root cause of this resistance.
Q: How do you use the BD Accuri C6 in your research program?
Dr. Liu: We measure the breast cancer stem cell population along with the apoptosis process and some surface marker expression. After we separate out the breast cancer stem cells, we grow the cancer stem cells and non-stem cells separately. We treat them with different dosages of chemotherapy drugs and measure apoptosis over time using Annexin V and propidium iodide (PI) staining.
Q: Why did you choose the BD Accuri C6?
Dr. Liu: The instrument’s ease of use, especially the fact that no voltage adjustments are required, makes it very convenient for new users as well as researchers who use flow cytometry occasionally as part of their research. These features limit disruptions of workflow for these users.
Q: Do you use the BD Accuri C6 as a tool to teach flow cytometry to students?
Dr. Liu: Yes, all new graduate students learn how to use the instrument.
Q: What does BD Accuri’s motto, “Flow Cytometry Within Reach™,” mean to you?
Dr. Liu: There are more than 20 scientists in our research group, and almost every one needs to use this instrument. Flow cytometry analysis has expanded to every process of our experiments. The scientists, who previously used Western blot or immunofluorescence to detect protein changes, are now using flow cytometry to obtain quicker and more accurate quantitative results.