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Magnetic cell separator

Magnetic cell separation technology can be used to enrich heterogeneous cell samples for particular cell populations prior to sorting, or as an endpoint itself (eg. positive selection of CD11c+ DC, generation of Lineage negative cells for adoptive transfer).

Our facility has two automated magnetic separator (AutoMACSpro), located in rooms 2-504 at TMDT and 18.9430 at PGCRL. A mandatory 15-minute training session provided by FMCF staff is a pre-requisite. This training session is free of charge. Please contact Emily Reddy for training ().

autoMACS Pro Separator

Two locations: TMDT Room 2-504 / PGCRL Room 18.9430


The autoMACS Pro Separator is a bench-top automated magnetic cell separator used for cell isolation and enrichment. Up to six samples can be processed automatically in volumes ranging from 0.2 mL to 50 mL. Preset cell separation programs allow positive or negative selection of magnetically labeled cells using MACS columns.

Cell separation programs are chosen based on levels of antigen expression and desired levels of recovery and purity. Cells are first labeled by the user with antibodies and/or MACS magnetic microbeads and then loaded onto the autoMACS where cells are passed through one or two columns (depending on the program). Both labeled and non-labeled fractions are eluted into tubes in chilled tube racks. Wash programs are performed between separations. The unit is in a bio-safety cabinet for aseptic handling of samples.

For more info visit: and

Key features:

  • 10 standard programs
  • Program duration: 2.5-10 minutes per sample mL, 4 minutes per wash
  • Maximum number of cells: 2 x 108 labeled cells, 4 x 109 total cells per separation
  • Minimum number of cells: 1 x 105
  • Sample volume: 200 µl to 50 mL

User provides:

  • Running buffer: can be purchased from Miltenyi (PBS, 2mM EDTA, 0.5%BSA, 0.09% NaAzide, cat#130-091-221, $330 for 6 x 1.5L) or make your own in 1L pyrex bottles
  • MACS microbeads and antibodies for labeling