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Facilities and Equipment


Center for Life Sciences
The Wyss Institute's Longwood facility is located at 3 Blackfan St, Boston, MA.

The Wyss Institute's main operations are located at 3 Blackfan St, Boston, MA on the 1st, 2nd and 5th floors (87,000 sq. ft.) of the Center for Life Science Boston Building. They are in close proximity to Harvard Medical School, Boston Children's Hospital, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Dana Farber Cancer Institute, Joslin Diabetes Center, and Brigham and Women's Hospital. The Institute also has 14,000 sq. ft. of office and lab space close to the Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences in Cambridge, MA. These spaces integrate the state-of-the-art equipment and facilities required for successful completion of the diverse research and technology development activities that are pursued at the Institute.

Laboratories and Equipment

Both Longwood and Cambridge facilities feature state-of-the-art laboratory space and equipment. The facilities include two dedicated BL2 laboratories for bacteria; five tissue culture rooms for mammalian cells; a BL2+ facility for primary human cell isolations from tissue biopsies under sterile and controlled conditions; cold/warm rooms; dedicated general equipment rooms; dedicated facilities for dishwashing, sterilizing glassware, and media preparation; and separate microscopy rooms.

The Institute maintains state-of-the-art facilities to support diverse research and technology development activities.

In addition to the more standard capabilities, such as high-speed centrifuges, floor shaker incubators, hybridization ovens, freezers, particle counters, microscopes, and chemical hoods, the Institute’s facilities include a Bio-Plex 3D multiplex array system with 96- and 384-well plate capability, an Agilent Velocity 11 Bravo liquid handling system, and quantitative real-time PCR detection systems. The Institute also maintains state-of-the-art imaging and materials characterization equipment. These are described below.



Wyss Institute Imaging

The Institute maintains super-resolution digital microscopy capable of resolving 20nm images.

The Institute maintains a state-of-the-art imaging facility with the following capabilities: electron microscopy (a JEOL JEM-1400 TEM and a fully integrated Tescan/Bruker VPSEM/EDX), a Leica TIRF, four Zeiss Axio Observer Z1 for live cell imaging, a Nikon NSTORM, a Leica SP5 X multispectral-multiphoton inverted confocal system with white light laser and HyD detectors, an upright Zeiss 710LSM confocal and an inverted Zeiss 710LSM confocal with TIRF combo system. Two high power workstations with Bitplane Imaris 7.5 software for 3D/4D image analysis. A BD LSRFortessa flow cytometer with High Throughput Sampler and a Caliper IVIS Spectrum for in vivo small animal imaging are also part of the imaging capabilities at the Institute.

Wyss Institute Materials Characterization

The Institute maintains a state-of-the-art materials characterization facility with the following capabilities: gas chromatography (Agilent 6890 GC with ALS and head space, Agilent 5975/7890 GC-MS with headspace); gel permeation chromatography (Malvern Viscotek GPC Max Tetra Detector, Malvern Viscotek GPC 270 Detector); liquid chromatography (several Agilent 1200 HPLC with rapid resolution, Agilent 1290 Infinity UPLC/6140 EZ access system for LC-MS); spectroscopy (R200-L SENTERRA Raman Microscope, Vertex 70 FTIR spectrometer with a Bruker HYPERION 3000 Infrared Microscope); a spectrophotometer (Agilent UV-Vis 8453 and Agilent Cary 300 UV-Vis); a particle size analyzer (two Malvern zen3600 particle size analyzer that can detect 0.6nm to 6 um using NIBS technology and Dynamic Light Scattering); an Agilent G200 nanoindenter; a TA Instruments AR-G2 rheometer to characterize material properties over a broad range of stress, strain and shear stress; two Veeco Multimode AFM microscopes; and an Agilent 5500 AFM microscope configured with an environmental chamber.


In addition to protein biochemistry, molecular, and cell biology facilities, the Wyss Institute is equipped with engineering facilities to support work on medical devices, biologically inspired architecture, microfluidic research systems, and other projects at the interface of biology and engineering.

Wyss Institute machine shop
The Wyss Institute machine shop enables 3D prototyping for various applications from the mini to the macro scale.

Wyss Institute Machine Shop / 3D Prototyping

The Wyss Institute Machine Shop / 3D Prototyping facility integrates a unique set of capabilities created to support the engineering needs of all Institute platforms. The facility is staffed by machinists with experience in both industrial and academic machine shops, creating prototypes for various applications. In addition to fabrication, these experts help researchers during the design phase, enabling development from a simple concept into real prototypes.

Specific engineering resources include a Microlution 5100-S CNC 5-axis micro milling machine, a CNC HAAS MM2 3-axis mini mill, a CNC HAAS VF-2YT, a HAAS TL-1 Lathe (manual and CNC), an Omax 2626 LXP water jet cutter, an Objet Connex 500 3D printer, a Fortus 400mc 3D printer, an Epilog 36-EXT laser-cutter, a Laserstar Fiberstar 7500 laser welder, an engineering stockroom, soldering stations, prototyping and diagnostic tools (e.g. oscilloscopes), a logic analyzer for examining high-speed digital output, and molding capabilities, including an oven suitable for composites, plastics, and silicon.

Wyss Institute Motion Capture Lab

A number of Institute technologies, such as the soft exosuit, are tested in the Wyss Motion Capture Lab.

The Wyss Motion Capture Lab, located on the first floor of the Center for Life Science Boston, is equipped to allow the capture of human, animal, robotic, or other motion in a three-dimensional space. The lab is primarily used to acquire and analyze how adults, children, and infants negotiate their environment. These data are used to advance the development of assistive medical devices and new diagnostics, as well as to enhance the design of our surrounding environment.

The Motion Capture Lab capabilities include AMTI OR-6 force plates, 8 T40 Vicon cameras, 2 Basler scA-640-120fc cameras, 6 Xsens MTw wireless inertial 3D motion tracking system, Biometrics Goniometers, a Cosmed K4b2 Cardiopulmonary exercise test system, a Delsys Trigno sEMG system, a TMX 425C treadmill capable of elevations of 25%, and a Bertec Instrumented Treadmill, an Isolon Systems IQ 108TB Storage Array. The MCL also has a control suite and a subject waiting room.

Computers and Software

Desktop user support services, core IT services (such as data storage, data backup and security), and computer services (such as high-performance computing and applications, website and infrastructure servers) are administered by the Wyss IT staff in collaboration with the Harvard Medical School. If needed, supercomputing capabilities (Blue Gene) are available through the John A. Paulson Harvard School of Engineering and Applied Sciences. A number of CAD and simulation software packages are also available at all Institute sites, including ComSol, Solidworks, Labview, Maya, Matlab, Pro-Engineer, ANSYS, SmartCam, and Autocad.

Offices and Meeting Space

The Institute facilities include office areas for faculty, as well as meeting and conference rooms to foster research collaboration. The Institute also provides administrative and grant support staff.



We've won a Webby Award!

Wyss Institute is proud to announce our win in the 2012
Webby Awards in the Science category.