VUMC Islet Procurement & Analysis Core

Multi-phase Transition Policy for IPA Core Operations


In order to maintain social distancing guidelines and for the safety of our staff and core users, we are implementing the following policies during the 4 phases of research activities ramp-up.


Mouse Islet Isolations

Islet isolations will be scheduled via email directed to Throughout all 4 phases, we will maintain contact-free exchange of mice and islets via a cart placed outside the lab in 7475 MRB IV. Before you bring mice for your islet isolation procedure, please text Anastasia Coldren at 615-243-4688 to ensure she is ready to receive them. Place mice in a transport container, drape a black plastic bag over the container, and spray it with MB-10. As usual, transport containers, gloves, plastic bags, and MB-10 will be available on the bottom shelf of the cart. When the islet isolation is completed, you will be notified by text. Islets will then be transferred into an ice container and placed on the cart for pickup. We ask that you bring your own ice container to transport islets from the core to your laboratory. During this time, we can accommodate islet isolations from a maximum of 6 mice per day.


ScanScope Usage

CS and FL ScanScope will be available for use during this 4-phase period. Only one user at a time will be allowed in the ScanScope room (8445 MRB IV). Please check both the CS and FL ScanScope iLab calendars to ensure you are the only user signed up during the time selected for your reservation. In addition to the VUMC universal masking guidance, users will be required to wear clean gloves while operating equipment. We also ask that you place a fresh keyboard cover on keyboards before use and discard after use. In addition, disinfect surrounding surfaces and the computer mouse before and after use. Gloves, disinfectant, and keyboard covers will be provided by IPA Core. The image analysis workstation will only be available for remote use during this time. Core personnel may not be on site for troubleshooting problems; please leave malfunctioning equipment in the failed state and report the problem to the IPA Core ASAP. For scheduling issues, access to the image analysis workstation, or scanner malfunctions, please contact


Have Questions?

Mouse islet isolation/islet function assay scheduling:

ScanScope information:

IPA Core Director:


Thank you for helping keep our research community healthy and safe!


Overview of Services

The Islet Procurement and Analysis Core (IPA Core) is a core of the Vanderbilt Diabetes Research and Training Center (DRTC). Pancreatic islet biology, development, and function are major DRTC research areas with investigators studying a variety of islet-related processes ranging from intracellular signaling, immunology of type 1 diabetes, islet-enriched transcription factors, to islet transplantation. The objective of the core is to facilitate research of DRTC-affiliated investigators by providing high quality, well-characterized mouse pancreatic islets.


Mouse Islet Isolation
Islet Perifusion
Static Islet Incubation
Islet Culture
Islet RNA Isolation
Whole Slide Scanning & Image Analysis
Assistance with Human Islets
Assistance with experimental design



*Acknowledgements for Islet Procurement & Analysis Core*
Please remember to acknowledge the Islet Procurement & Analysis Core when submitting publications. The Islet Procurement & Analysis Core is supported by the Vanderbilt Diabetes Research and Training Center (P60 DK020593).


Marcela Brissova (Tel. 615-936-1729), PhD, Core Director

Anastasia Coldren (Tel. 615-936-2858), BS, Senior Research Specialist

Heather Durai (Tel. 615-875-8486), BS, Senior Research Specialist

Shaojun Mei, (Tel. 615-875-8661), MD, Senior Research Specialist

Corey Davis, (Tel. 615-936-2902), MS, Research Assistant

Dannielle Gibson, (Tel. 615-936-9118), BS, Research Assistant

Alisa Escue (Tel. 615-322-2397), Core Administrator

Location and hours of operation

Hours Location

Islet Procedures: M - F 8 am - 4:30 pm  

Slide Scanning: 24/7

8445C MRB IV

8434 MRB IV

Links and Resources



Name Role Phone Email Location
Marcela Brissova
Core Director
8435G MRB4
Anastasia Coldren
Sr. Research Specialist
7475 MRB4
Alisa Escue
Core Administrator
807E Light Hall
Heather Durai
Sr. Research Specialist
8445 MRB4
Shaojun Mei
Sr. Research Specialist
7475 MRB4

Available Equipment and Resources

Name Price
Scan Scope CS View calendar
Scan Scope FL View calendar
Indica Labs Image Analysis Workstation View calendar