VOYAGER adjustable tip spacing pipette ensures consistent pipetting between lab staff when setting up the Quidel® Solana® Group A Streptococcus assay

  • VOYAGER adjustable tip spacing pipette ensures consistent pipetting between lab staff when setting up the Quidel® Solana® Group A Streptococcus assay

    Rapid IVD amplification test for the qualitative detection of Group A β-hemolytic Streptococcus pyogenes nucleic acids

    The Quidel Solana Group A Streptococcus (GAS) test is a low throughput, simplified amplification assay that detects β-hemolytic Streptococcus nucleic acids. It is easy to perform outside of core molecular diagnostics/biology laboratories by following simplified procedure on the compact Solana instrument. However, accurate pipetting is still crucial, and Quidel recommends its customers to use the VOYAGER 300 µl 4 channel adjustable tip spacing pipette when performing the Solana GAS assay. The VOYAGER pipette provides a semi-automated solution to ensure consistent pipetting steps, while reducing operator fatigue and the risk of repetitive strain injuries.

  • Table of contents

    The Quidel Solana Group A Streptococcus (GAS) test is a low throughput, simplified amplification assay that detects β-hemolytic Streptococcus nucleic acids. It is easy to perform outside of core molecular diagnostics/biology laboratories by following simplified procedure on the compact Solana instrument. However, accurate pipetting is still crucial, and Quidel recommends its customers to use the VOYAGER 300 µl 4 channel adjustable tip spacing pipette when performing the Solana GAS assay. The VOYAGER pipette provides a semi-automated solution to ensure consistent pipetting steps, while reducing operator fatigue and the risk of repetitive strain injuries.

Key benefits

  • Validated pipetting programs provided by Quidel are saved on the pipette, ensuring that all analysts follow the same pipetting procedure each time the assay is performed.
  • The adjustable tip spacing feature of the VOYAGER pipette enables multichannel sample transfer between specimen, processing and PCR tubes.
  • Light touch control buttons for pipetting and tip ejection reduce the incidence of repetitive strain injuries.
  • Use of the VOYAGER 4 channel adjustable tip spacing pipette allows semi-automated set-up of 12 sample batches, speeding up the time-to-results.

Overview: How to set up the Quidel Solana Group A Streptococcus assay

The swab samples used in the Solana GAS test can be dry or submerged in a liquid medium. The master mix reagent is added to each reaction tube in a dehydrated form, then rehydrated when the diluted sample is added. VOYAGER 4 channel, 300 µl adjustable tip spacing pipette with 300  µl LONG, Sterile, Filter GripTips is used in this protocol. Two GAS programs are provided: GAS P1 is used for transferring samples from liquid medium to the lysis buffer, while GAS P2 transfers lysed sample to dilution tubes, then to the reaction tubes.

Downloads: App note and protocols for the Quidel® Solana® Group A Streptococcus assay with the VOYAGER pipette

Here you can download the complete protocols used in this application and use them on your VOYAGER. The protocol can be modified and transferred directly to the pipette with the VIALINK software.

Step-by-step procedure:

Overview of the steps:

  1. Heat lysis
  2. Dilution and amplification steps

1. Heat lysis

Processing swabs submitted in liquid medium

Set up the Solana workflow tray with patient samples, lysis buffer tubes, dilution buffer tubes and amplification reaction tubes (Figure 1). Uncap sample and lysis buffer tubes, placing caps face up on work area to prevent cross-contamination.

Quidel Solana instrument, Solana GAS assay, Solana workflow tray completed with INTEGRA's 4 channel adjustable tip spacing pipette.
Figure 1: Quidel Solana workflow tray, Solana instrument, Solana GAS assay and VOYAGER adjustable tip spacing pipette.

Turn on the pipette and select 'GAS P1' from the ‘Custom Programs’ in the main menu. Press RUN to start the program. Once started, the program displays step-by-step instructions on screen (Figure 2). Load the pipette tips when prompted by the program, and press RUN to execute each step. The pipette will automatically adjust the tip spacing when mixing, aspirating and dispensing 50 µl of the sample into lysis tubes. When the final step has been performed, the pipette screen will display ‘WORKFLOW COMPLETE’ and will beep twice. When you are done pipetting, heat lysis buffer tubes at 95°C for 5 minutes.

The bright, full color screen of the VOYAGER adjustable tip spacing pipette.
Figure 2: The bright, full colour screen guides the user through the entire protocol.

Processing dry swab samples

Set up the Solana workflow tray with patient samples, lysis buffer tubes, dilution buffer tubes and amplification reaction tubes (Figure 1). Uncap lysis buffer tubes, leaving caps face up to prevent cross-contamination. Insert each swab into the appropriately labelled lysis buffer tube, and twirl for 10 seconds. Heat lysis buffer tubes at 95°C for 5 minutes.

Tips:

  • The pipette makes sure that the user knows which step is being performed by showing messages on the screen.
  • The use of LONG, Sterile, Filter GripTips prevents contamination of the pipette when aspirating sample out of tall tubes.
  • Once written, programs may be saved on the pipette and re-used by retrieving them from the Custom Programs menu.

2. Dilution and amplification steps

Transfer of lysed samples to dilution tubes, and diluted samples to reaction tubes

At the end of the heat step, uncap each lysis buffer tube and place it in the workflow tray (Figure 1). Remove caps from dilution buffer tubes and place them face up on the work area to prevent cross-contamination. Uncap the reaction tubes. Turn on the pipette and select program 'GAS P2' from the ‘Custom Programs’ in the main menu. As in the previous program, 'GAS P2' guides the user through each step of the process. Pressing RUN on the pipette starts the program. Following the prompts on the pipette, lysed samples are mixed and 50 µl is transferred to dilution buffer. Dilution buffer is then mixed by the pipette, and the user is prompted to transfer 50 µl to reaction tubes. A final mixing step is performed to rehydrate the master mix in the tubes. Upon completion of the program, the pipette displays a ‘WORKFLOW COMPLETE’ prompt and beeps twice. Cap the reaction tubes and load them in the Solana instrument. Results will be ready in 25 minutes.

Tips:

  • Lightly touch pipette tips to the side of the tube when dispensing small volumes of liquids, to ensure release of liquid from the pipette tip.
  • VOYAGER pipette tip spacing can be set to any width between 4.5 and 30.0 mm to accommodate a wide range of tube sizes.
  • Custom programs can be written directly on the VOYAGER pipette, or by using INTEGRA's VIALINK pipette management software. Programs stored in VIALINK can be modified and transferred directly to the pipette. VIALINK can be downloaded for free here.

Conclusion

  • The Quidel Solana offers simplified, fast and accurate molecular testing, but the consistency and quality of results for tests such as the Group A Streptococcus assay are dependent on the user's ability to perform precise pipetting. This can be difficult to achieve when testing is performed outside the traditional laboratory, especially if staff have limited pipetting experience.
  • A pre-programmed VOYAGER adjustable tip spacing pipette minimizes variation between individuals, while easing the physical strain often experienced by users of single channel manual pipettes.

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  • Carol Loring

    Field application specialist and business development

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Instruments and accessories

VOYAGER, 4 Channel, 300 µl GRIPTIP, 300 µl LONG, Sterile, Filter Large PopTop Base QUIDEL: Solana Group A Streptococcus Kit

VOYAGER, 4 Channel, 300 µl

VOYAGER pipettes allow the tip spacing to expand anywhere between 4.5 mm and 33 mm at the push of a button.

  • Single handed operation leaves the other hand free to handle labware.
  • On the fly access to up to 3 user-defined tip spacings.
  • These user defined tip spacings are saved. No need to memorize spacings of different labware formats.

Part No. 4743

See it work
VOYAGER 4 channel 300 µl pipette

GRIPTIP, 300 µl LONG, Sterile, Filter

GRIPTIP pipette tips perfectly match the multi-lobe tip fitting, snapping firmly on during loading. This guarantees a perfect seal on every tip, preventing them from loosening, leaking or completely falling off. All tips are precisely aligned horizontally, enabling accurate touch-offs, even when pipetting with 384 tips.

Part No. 3485

Learn more about GripTips pipette tips for Handheld Pipettes
300 µl LONG Sterile, Filter GripTips

Large PopTop Base

Reduce the amount of plastic used in your lab. Our one-of-a-kind, reusable PopTop Base is compatible with ECO Racks or GREEN CHOICE refill inserts and offers you the most environmentally friendly system.

The PopTop base is designed to allow one-handed operation, and can be opened with a simple press of a button, combatting the common problem of having to set down your pipette while working. This can significantly reduce the chance of making mistakes during pipetting procedures, streamlining your workflow and helping you to get the best results possible!

Learn more about how the PopTop base can be used together with ECO Racks
Scientist loading a pipette tip from a PopTop Base with a single channel EVOLVE pipette

QUIDEL: Solana Group A Streptococcus Kit

The Solana GAS Assay is a rapid in vitro diagnostic test for the qualitative detection of Group A β-hemolytic Streptococcus (Streptococcus pyogenes) nucleic acids isolated from throat swab specimens obtained from patients with signs and symptoms of pharyngitis, such as sore throat. The Solana GAS Assay, when performed on the Solana instrument, allows for the rapid, accurate detection of Group A Strep without the need for culture confirmation. The assay utilizes helicase-dependent amplification (HDA) of the DNase B (sdaB) sequence and fluorescent probe-based detection in the Solana instrument to determine assay results.

Part No. M305

Source: Website supplier

Visit supplier website
Solana GAS assay

Customer’s voice

I love the variable spacing of the Voyager series electronic pipettes. It allows me to use the Voyager in many more applications than I could with a fixed width multichannel pipette.

GREGORY KUJOTH, University of Wisconsin-Madison