Histology Core

The HSCRB Histology-Immunohistochemistry Core is located in Bauer B008. An initial grant established and funded the purchase of essential core facility equipment and enabled rate subsidies until it ended in 2011. The Department began to charge for histology services beginning in November 2011. Rates and staffing needs are reviewed and revised biannually based on predicted usage. Increased usage allows the department to maintain lower hourly rates.

In the Department’s Histology core, fees are charged in half hour increments of technician or self-user time logged by the Histology Core technicians. “No shows” for self service will be charged for time they scheduled unless they cancel their appointment 24 hours ahead of time; the costs of “no shows” may only be charged to faculty research funds (e.g., start-up), not grants.

The Histology Core offers an array of full service professional and techical histological and immunohistochemical services. The Core Histologists can advise and assist with experimental design and development and will assist you with interpretation of tests and their results. Also for a fee based on the hourly Tech Service rate, you may opt to have a technician do your specialized histology and immunohistochemistry. For specialized or unique services or requests, the Histology Core staff can be trained at no additional cost for specialized techniques and tissue types that are specific to your laboratory needs. For more information on specialized Histology and Immunohistochemistry services and open source training, please contact Cathy MacGillivray at cathy_macgillivray@harvard.edu.

Additionally for a flat fee based on the Tech Service hourly rate, our histologist will be glad to train your lab personnel for self-service use of the facility and its equipment. Self Service rates provided nominal savings and equipment can be reserved by contacting our Lead Histologist to grant access to the facility and its equipment. You may also reserve time by using SPINAL 24 hours a day, 7 days a week once an individual is trained. For more information on Histology techniques and equipment training, please contact Cathy MacGillivray at cathy_macgillivray@harvard.edu.

We anticipate a rate increase, effective 1 July 2018

Rates Updated
All fees are subject to indirect cost recovery at the University’s applicable rates. Please call for rates for investigators at affiliated institutions, non-profit institutions, and for-profit companies.

General use supplies will be provided by the Histology core and the cost of this is included in the hourly fees. For specialized procedures such as immunohistochemistry, the individual laboratory is responsible for purchasing and providing specialized agents, stains and supplies - ask Cathy whether a specific agent or supply falls into this category.

Fill out an order form here: HSCRB Histology Core Service Request Form

What We Can Do For You

  • Training and troubleshooting on equipment
  • Embedding paraffin and OCT
  • Sectioning with a cryostat, microtome, or vibratome.
  • Special stains
  • Antibody titration and optimization

Core Equipment Available

  • 1 automatic tissue processor [Microm STP120] (Tech supported only)
  • 1 automatic stainer [Shandon Varistain 24-4] (use Spinal to reserve)
  • 3 manual staining racks (use Spinal to reserve)
  • 1 embedding center [Leica EG1150H] (Tech supported only)
  • 2 microtomes [Leica RM2255] (one available on Spinal to reserve)
  • 1 microtome [Leica RM2255] (Tech supported only)
  • 1 older model microtome (available as needed)
  • 1 vibratome [Leica] (use Spinal to reserve)
  • 4 cryostats (use Spinal to reserve)
  • Bright cryostat (use Spinal to reserve)
  • Leica CM1950 cryostat (use Spinal to reserve)
  • ThermoSci HM550 cryostat (available after 5pm on Spinal)
  • ThermoSci HM550 cryostat (Tech supported only)
  • 2 brain slicers (one adult, one neonatal)
  • 1 Olympus CX41 microscope (available for use)
  • 1 Olympus BX53 microscope with Olympus camera (Tech supported only)

To reserve equipment and instruments within HSCRB Core Facilities, go to Harvard's Research Computing site and log into Spinal at https://webapps.sciences.fas.harvard.edu/spinal. You are required to have an RC account and you will have to be trained and approved on the particular instrument.

Department Shared Equipment

CENTRIFUGES  Type  Loc Contact
Beckman Avante J-E highspeed   SF3 George Kenty (Melton lab)
ThermoSci Sorvall RC 6+ highspeed   SF3 George Kenty (Melton lab)
Beckman Avante J-E highspeed   SF2 Matt Shear (Zhou lab)
Beckman Optima L-90K ultra  SF2 Matt Shear (Zhou lab)
Beckman Optima XPN-80K ultra  SF1 Karen Yee (Macklis lab)
CRYOSTAT Type Loc Contact
ThermoSci Cryostat HM550 SF3 Zak Trayes-Gibson (Arlotta lab)




Operation and Staff

The Lead Histologist, Cathy MacGillivray, manages the function of the facility and its staff, Diane Faria and Ann Lee. Cathy is available to answer your questions about available services, training, scheduling equipment, work requests, billing and technical issues regarding histology and immunohistochemistry. Dr. Qiao (Joe) Zhou is the faculty advisor for the operation of the departmental facility.

Joe Vaughan, Assistant Director of Lab Operations, oversees HSCRB laboratories including Service Cores and Research Cores; please feel free to contact him with any questions or concerns.