Capillary electrophoresis (CE) is emerging as a fast and versatile analytical tool in clinical laboratories. During an AACC-sponsored webinar on June 23, Kazunori Murata, PhD, DABCC, will discuss CE’s potential in replacing conventional clinical lab methods--and how laboratorians can best optimize this new tool.

Dr. Murata, an attending clinical chemist at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center’s Department of Laboratory Medicine in New York, N.Y., will highlight what labs need to know in transitioning from a gel-based to a capillary-based platform for serum protein electrophoresis.

CE has multiple applications in the clinical laboratory setting, although the webinar will focus on the aspects that relate to serum protein electrophoresis, a test that’s used in the diagnosis and monitoring of patients with multiple myeloma as well as other monoclonal gammopathies, says Dr. Murata, who directs Sloan Kettering’s protein immunology lab.

The conventional lab method for serum protein electrophoresis is gel electrophoresis, However, CE has the potential to replace this method now that reliable, precise, and high-resolution instruments with multiple capillaries are commercially available.

CE is versatile in that it can be used for a number of different assays. In addition to immunosubtraction as an aid to serum protein electrophoresis, it can be used for hemoglobin electrophoresis in evaluating hemoglobinopathies, and for quantitation of HbA1c.

“CE is highly automated, meaning you can put a specimen on and walk away. It’s a very hands-off machine. Compared to a gel, there’s a lot less manual manipulation involved. It also offers a higher resolution compared to some of the gels that are used,” Dr. Murata told CLN Stat. Because it's so highly automated, CE allows for faster turnaround time. In addition, its higher resolution eliminates the need for certain follow-up tests when used for hemoglobin electrophoresis.

Murata plans to discuss some of the analytical and practical aspects of using CE for serum protein electrophoresis, as well as some tips for making a successful transition to CE.

This is not necessarily the best tool for every lab, especially in labs that don’t do serum electrophoresis, he notes. Labs will have to consider whether this test method meets their needs.

Register online for this 60-minute webinar, “Making the Transition to Capillary Electrophoresis.”