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Cytometry. 1996 Mar 15;26(1):22-31.

Standardizing flow cytometry: construction of a standardized fluorescence calibration plot using matching spectral calibrators.

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Flow Cytometry Standards Corporation, San Juan, Puerto Rico 00919-4344, The Netherlands.


Calibration of flow cytometers is becoming an increasingly important issue for both quality control of instrument performance and quantitation of antibody binding capacity of cells. Due to the numerous different instruments and analysis software currently available, a standardized method of calibration is necessary if interlaboratory comparison of instrument performance and antibody binding is to be achieved. This report describes a new methodology to obtain a standard calibration plot that can be derived from all instruments and from which specific instrument-independent performance parameters may be calculated that can be used to directly compare the performance and setup of these instruments. The requirements that the calibrated standards must meet are discussed, as well as the acceptable ranges proposed for the instrument-independent performance parameters. In addition, data are presented from standard calibration plots generated by different flow cytometers in numerous laboratories. The corresponding Primary Performance Parameters calculated from these plots are presented and compared. It is expected that the use of this calibration method may help standardize flow cytometric measurements and will provide instrument-independent performance parameters to monitor quality control of instruments and reagents.

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