Most of R2FACT’s clients are focused on bringing a product to market. One of our repeat customers, the Stowers Institute for Biomedical Research, comes to us with a different agenda – helping scientists refine their ideas into tools that support the research process. Since our first collaboration shortly after our founding, R2FACT has become the “go to” product developer for Stowers.
The prestigious Kansas City-based Institute, the second largest in the country, is dedicated to basic research into the factors that affect gene functioning. Gene malfunctions play a role in such diseases as Alzheimer’s, diabetes, cardiac disease, and cancers. Although not directly involved in finding cures, the scientists at Stowers make discoveries that are the basis for targeted production of new therapies.
The ideas for research tools the scientists bring to us become developed devices, instruments, or fixtures (to hold research subjects in place). An example is the playfully named Chromosome Squasher, which prepares cells for viewing between glass slides with high technology vision systems.
The scientist who wanted a better way to prepare the cells studies genes’ production of proteins and RNA molecules related to leukemia. The “mix-up” of the molecular-level processes causes the disease. The identification of how the processes go wrong leads to more effective treatments.
His lab assistants had been using a laborious technique of manually squeezing together slides to crush the cells before viewing. The Chromosome Squasher device is a kind of press with a carefully balanced handle that much more efficiently squeezes the animal cells between glass slides into 2-dimensional profiles. The profiles allow for clearer viewing of the characteristics of the cell’s molecular matter.
Stowers’ Director of Cytometry (quantitative cell research) said of R2FACT’s services: “they are capable of manufacturing the perfect sub-component out of the ideal material to match the perfect design. R2FACT is characterized by perseverance. I have worked with their team for over 8 years and have found that they approach each consultation with insightful designs.”
Taking care of the customer has resulted in the consistent business of one of the most respected biomedical research institutions in the world. They come back again and again for help in developing what they need to carry on their work. And they get the perfect solution.