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Integration of the LEADseeker Multimodality Imaging System with automated plate loading and incubation using Overlord Instrument software

e* (Fig 1).

The LEADseeker instrument PC is supplied with a DIGI multiport serial card to allow connection of up to eight serial devices, although the LEADseeker instrument is controlled through COM1 and COM2 so these ports cannot be used for other equipment. The cables from the DIGI card are labeled P1 to P8 and their COM port equivalents are shown in Figure 1 and Figure 2.

Overlord program
Overlord Instrument software has a simple drag and drop interface for setting up communication between instruments. The software also permits a range of programming elements such as numeric and string variables, conditional statements (e.g., IF THEN, ELSE), and control loops (e.g., FORNEXT). A simple program typically used in this work is summarized in Figure 3.

The purpose of the Overlord program illustrated in Figure 3 was to take a number of microplates from storage in the Cytomat Incubator, use the Zymark Twister II Robot to transfer them to the LEADseeker instrument for data acquisition, and then return the microplates to the Cytomat Incubator for storage or further incubation. The program allows the user to enter the number of plates to be processed and the number of the plate with which the run starts.

Following data acquisition, the numeric file associated with the processed LEADseeker image was stored on the Overlord computer by transfer across the serial connection. The filename assigned for each file was generated by string concatenation shown in Figure 3.

Zymark Twister II Robot settings
The Zymark Twister II Robot was taught its positions and procedures using Overlord Instrument software. Robot procedures were given self-explanatory names such as GetPlateFromCytomat, PutPlateOnLEADseeker etc. Full descriptions o
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