As an undergraduate engineering senior design project, we have been looking at potential for optimization of the CLARITY protocol, in terms of both time and cost. I thought I would try to get input here on what areas you would like to see explored as we spend the year working on this project. Are there particular areas that take far too long or that cost too much? We have been hearing from others that the FocusClear solution, the platinum electrodes, and the power supply are areas that we can work on. Any suggestions you have would be greatly appreciated. Of course we'll share anything useful that we find, so think of this as an opportunity to get us to explore these things for you.
- the SDS
- the platinum
- The focusclear
The focusclear costs can be reduced to practically zero by using the homemade focusclear, or a ScaleU2 solution instead. The SDS and platinum costs can be reduced to zero as well by doing passive clearing, at the expense of added time.
Then you have imaging costs, but this is a case by case thing.
Hope this helps.
I have been using a few alternatives, that, thus far, have not been creating any noticeable issues:
1) SDS: I have found that prices for this vary greatly, with Sigma-Aldrich being one of the most expensive. The cheapest version I found was from Millipore (cat# 428015-1KG), at $89.00/kg.
2) Pt Wire: I have had greater luck switching to Pt-Ir (90-10) than with going with a thinner gauge wire. Currently, we are using Alfa Aesar cat# 10056. Seems to work just fine and has the added benefit of being a bit stronger than pure Pt.
3) Kwik-Sil: A quick curing elastomer is really all that's necessary, so we are trying Loctite Hysol from McMaster-Carr (cat# 7369A14). We had actually bought it to try for the ECT chamber, but it didn't withstand the detergent, but seems to be okay for the imaging chamber.
I do appreciate the FauxusClear recipes, which works great.
Only about $25 for 400 mL vs. about $85 for 5 mL Kwik-Sil. Scientific vendors really rip us off.
Can you share the recipe for homemade FocusClear?
That would be great! Thanks
Please ask me if you have any questions about it, it is very easy to do and VERY CHEAP. Furthermore it is suitable with different type of microscopy.