Automated Blood Sampler

Accurate collection of blood samples from laboratory animals including mice, rats and large animals

Instech’s ABS2™ automates the collection of blood samples from laboratory animals including mice, rats and large animals. By eliminating labor-intensive manual withdrawals it can substantially increase the throughput of pharmacokinetics research groups. It can also reduce the stress on animals caused by handling and venipuncture.

The sampler withdraws blood from a tethered freely-moving animal according to your programmed schedule, stores the samples in an integrated refrigerated fraction collector, and replaces the withdrawn volumes with IV fluid. You control and monitor sampling schedules, volumes and withdrawal rates for up to twelve animals from a central computer.

Unique advantages of the Instech blood sampling system include:

  • Undiluted samples, verified by in-line sensors
  • A short collection path, to minimize mixing and collection times
  • Less than 5 µL of blood wasted per sample, to minimize hemodilution
  • The flexibility to work with a range of species, from mice and rats to large animals


The ABS2, Instech’s second-generation autosampler, builds on the proven foundation of a series of precision peristaltic pumps to move blood and IV fluids directly to their destinations. The fraction collector has been redesigned from the ground up for additional features and high reliability.


The ABS2 not only works with refrigerated vials (such as the Greiner MiniCollect® tubes), but also can deposit 10-25µL microsamples directly onto dried blood spot paper.

Dried Blood Spot Sampling for DMPK

Instech’s ABS2™ automated blood sampler can collect and deposit laboratory animal blood samples directly onto dried blood spot (DBS) paper.

Spot volumes can be as small as 10µL, greatly increasing the number of samples that can be collected from small rodents. For example, the ABS2 can take a full PK profile from a single mouse. Compared to the traditional method of piecing together data using one mouse per time point, data will be more consistent and the number of animals used can be reduced by an order of magnitude.

In addition, the DBS technique can streamline processing (plasma isolation steps are removed) and it permits room temperature storage and shipment.

Instech’s DBS disks feature GE-Whatman FTA® DMPK-C paper. They measure 6cm in diameter and hold either 10 or 12 spots of 10-25µL (choose 10 or 12 based on how your sampler is configured). Individual blood samples can be spotted singly, in duplicate or in triplicate. Disks are easily changed if more spots are required in a study.

Switching between DBS and traditional vial collection is as simple as changing the fraction collector carousel and selecting the appropriate mode in the software:

Automated Blood Sampler for PET Imaging Studies

Instech has developed a special version of its automated blood sampling software for use in positron-emission tomography studies. It controls a single sampler that withdraws blood from an anesthetized animal (rats or large animals) in a PET scanner following administation of radio-labeled compounds. Automating blood collection in PET studies can increase the number of samples taken, leading to more accurate determination of peaks, while reducing manpower and handling of radioactive blood.

The software will first run the unit in a high-speed sampling mode, collecting as many as 20 samples of 20-100μL in 4-5 minutes, then autuomatically switch to a standard PK sampling mode, taking up to 20 samples over 24 hours or more. Merck has validated that the data from samples collected by the Instech ABS2 is comparable to their historical manual samples.[1]

Please contact us for more information on this system. For laboratory animal research use only.

[1] Gantert, L. et al, Merck & Co., Inc., “Automated Arterial Blood Sampling in Rhesus Monkey PET Imaging Studies,” presentation at Infusion Technology Organisation conference, Cologne Germany, 7 September 2015.

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