Each of the labs listed in what follows provides a specific combination of equipment, instrumentation, professional skills and scientific expertise. However, the list proposed below only aims at presenting available resources in a rational way, with no reference to limitations of access or to destination to specific uses or users. All the equipment and instrumentation is shared among various research groups, and is meant to be accessible to faculty and to qualified staff and students. Activities in each laboratory are carried out in a strongly collaborative environment within DeFENS as a whole, and often involve other research groups in UNIMI and in many non-UNIMI research institutions.
The organic synthesis lab is fully equipped for carrying out activities related to the production and characterization of a variety of molecules, and for their isolation from natural sources. The lab may rely on appropriate equipment for separation/isolation and for structural analysis, including GC and LC equipment, IR and UV/Vis spectrophotometers, and a 300 MHz NMR.
Advanced NMR spectroscopy
The advanced NMR spectroscopy lab relies on a recently updated 600 MHz instrument. Probes for a variety of nuclei are available, as well as accessories for solid state (CPMAS) measurements. MRI is feasible for samples as large as 10 mm, and the instrument can be used for relaxometric measurements. Associated to the lab is hardware dedicated to structural modeling.
Food analysis and electrochemistry
The lab relies on advanced and custom-designed instruments for electrochemical analysis, along with the standard complement of instrumentation (GC/MS, LC/MS). Also present is equipment or instrumental sensory analysis (e-nose, e-tongue), for image analysis, and for the on-site production of micro- and nano-scaled supports by electrospinning or by microemulsioning.
The thermochemistry lab has a complete array of instruments for thermal analysis, including custom-designed DSC and ITC instruments, and micro-DSC micro-ITC equipment. Custom-designed software has been developed in-house, allowing cutting-edge performance as for data handling and interpretation.
The lab has a full array of separative instruments (1 and 2D electrophoresis, several LCs with various types of detectors), with appropriate and up-to-date software for data management. Also available is equipment for a broad array of immunochemical techniques and for processing of immunochemical data, and for measurement of various types of biological activities also by non-conventional methods. Associated to the lab is also instrumentation for image analysis, that may acquire and process also data obtained with fluorescence and chemiluminescence techniques.
Protein chemistry and protein engineering
Aside from standard equipment for protein isolation and purification, these labs are fully equipped for gene amplification and overexpression of wild type and mutated proteins in bacteria and yeasts. Also available is an ultrafiltration pilot plant, that may be used as an enzymatic bioreactor. Instrumentation devoted to protein structural analysis includes a fully accessorized Multi-Angle Light Scattering setup, a spectropolarimeter with accessories for stopped-flow rapid kinetics studies (circular dichroism and fluorescence), and a spectrofluorimeter with front-face (solid-state) capability. All optical instruments in the lab have computer-driven temperature controllers for conditional stability studies. Gloveboxes and high-efficiency vacuum lines are available for anaerobic handling of redox-sensitive materials.