Flow cytometry is a complex technology that is increasingly being used by clinicians to improve the quality of health care. In order to minimize artifacts and assure accuracy, rapid and simple quality control methods are critical for effective use of the technology in both the research and clinical settings.
To address this need, Cira has created QTube. It is freely available, and you can run it on your computer right now!
QTube is a Java application that requires the Java Runtime Environment (JRE) Version 1.5 or later. Click here to go to the Sun Microsystem website for an update, if needed (look for the link to JRE, you do not require the JDK which is much larger).
We recommend that your computer have at least 512 MBytes of memory. You will need at least 15 MBytes of free disk space.
QTube, powered by Cira’s Cytometric Fingerprinting technology, quantitatively assesses the consistency of gating data across a panel of tubes. QTube produces a numerical as well as a graphical assessment of gate data consistency. The algorithm operates directly on list-mode FCS data and requires no operator intervention. Though the underlying technology is extremely powerful, QTube itself couldn’t be easier to use.
In a nutshell, QTube looks at the similarity of event distributions in two or more tubes. Without you needing to direct its attention (via gating for example), QTube computes a fingerprint for each tube, and then compares each fingerprint against the aggregate. It provides feedback as to how similar the distributions are, which ones (if any) are outliers, and by how much. It does all of this with a single click. If you like, you can easily export the result to Excel or other analysis or reporting software.