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Title:
IMAGING SUPPORT DEVICES
Document Type and Number:
WIPO Patent Application WO/2020/219901
Kind Code:
A1
Abstract:
A support device for a substrate includes a substrate including a first surface and a second surface, the first surface configured for receiving a sample; and a substrate holder including: a cover configured to receive a gasket, the cover comprising a plurality of ribs extending from a surface of the cover; a base configured to receive the substrate; and at least one pair of locking tabs, each locking tab comprising a moveable tab coupled to a first side wall of the cover and a non-moveable tab coupled to a first side wall of the base, wherein the moveable tab is configured to engage with the non-moveable tab to releasably secure the cover to the base, and wherein the cover and the base are pivotably connected together by at least one hinge.

Inventors:
UYTINGCO CEDRIC (US)
BENT ZACHARY (US)
RAMACHANDRAN IYER ESWAR PRASAD (US)
VALDECANAS FERNANDINO (US)
FREY MEGHAN L F (US)
SHORT STEVEN WILLIAM (US)
YIN YIFENG (US)
TENTORI AUGUSTO MANUEL (US)
BHARADWAJ RAJIV (US)
COX DAVID MAURICE (US)
CHEW JENNIFER (US)
Application Number:
US2020/029843
Publication Date:
October 29, 2020
Filing Date:
April 24, 2020
Export Citation:
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Assignee:
10X GENOMICS INC (US)
UYTINGCO CEDRIC (US)
BENT ZACHARY (US)
RAMACHANDRAN IYER ESWAR PRASAD (US)
VALDECANAS FERNANDINO (US)
FREY MEGHAN L F (US)
SHORT STEVEN WILLIAM (US)
YIN YIFENG (US)
TENTORI AUGUSTO MANUEL (US)
BHARADWAJ RAJIV (US)
COX DAVID MAURICE (US)
CHEW JENNIFER (US)
International Classes:
B01L9/00; A61B10/00; B01L3/00
Domestic Patent References:
WO2004108268A12004-12-16
Foreign References:
EP1782737A12007-05-09
US20100151511A12010-06-17
US20090253582A12009-10-08
US20190065100W2019-12-06
US20180156784A12018-06-07
US6391937B12002-05-21
US9512422B22016-12-06
US9889422B22018-02-13
US20170253918A12017-09-07
US20180052081A12018-02-22
US20190006510W
Other References:
WILLNER, ACC. CHEM. RES., vol. 50, 2017, pages 657 - 658
ECHEVERRIA ET AL., GELS, vol. 4, 2018, pages 54
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
KIM, Grace J. et al. (US)
Download PDF:
Claims:
WHAT IS CLAIMED IS:

1. A support device for a substrate comprising a sample region, the support device

comprising:

a substrate comprising a first surface and a second surface, the first surface configured for receiving a sample; and

a substrate holder comprising:

a cover configured to receive a gasket, the cover comprising a plurality of ribs extending from a surface of the cover;

a base configured to receive the substrate; and

at least one pair of locking tabs, each locking tab comprising a moveable tab coupled to a first side wall of the cover and a non-moveable tab coupled to a first side wall of the base,

wherein the moveable tab is configured to engage with the non-moveable tab to releasably secure the cover to the base, and

wherein the cover and the base are pivotably connected by at least one hinge.

2. The support device of claim 1, wherein the at least one hinge extends from a second side wall of the cover to a second side wall of the base.

3. The support device of claim 1 or 2, wherein the second surface of the substrate rests on top of the base of the substrate holder.

4. The support device of any one of claims 1-3, wherein the gasket is positionally aligned on the surface of the cover by the plurality of ribs.

5. The support device of any one of claims 1-4, wherein the gasket is positioned so that when the substrate is secured by the substrate holder, and the substrate holder is in the closed position, a vapor-tight seal is formed between the gasket and the substrate.

6. The support device of any one of claims 1-5, wherein the cover comprises a plurality of apertures.

7. The support device of claim 6, wherein the gasket comprises a plurality of openings, wherein the plurality of openings are positioned so that when the substrate is secured by the substrate holder, and the substrate holder is in a closed position, the plurality of apertures are aligned with the plurality of openings.

8. The support device of any one of claims 1-7, wherein the gasket is configured to prevent fluid transport between the plurality of openings when the cover is in the closed position.

9. The support device of any one of claims 1-8, wherein the substrate is a glass slide.

10. The support device of any one of claims 1-9, wherein the base comprises a lip extending around the perimeter of the base, the lip configured to retain the substrate within the base.

11. The support device of any one of claims 1-10, wherein the first surface of the substrate engages with at least one of the plurality of ribs when the substrate holder is in the closed position.

12. The support device of any one of claims 1-11, wherein the base comprises an opening exposing at least a portion of the second surface of the substrate when the substrate is placed in the base.

13. The support device of any one of claims 1-12, wherein the first side wall of the cover is generally orthogonal to the second side wall of the cover.

14. The support device of any one of claims 1-13, wherein when the substrate holder is in a closed position, the cover is configured to fold onto the base.

15. A support device for a substrate comprising a sample region, the support device

comprising:

a substrate comprising a first surface and a second surface, the first surface of the substrate is a substrate configured for receiving a sample;

a substrate holder comprising:

a cover configured to receive a gasket, the cover comprising a plurality of ribs extending from a surface of the cover;

a base configured to receive a substrate, wherein the cover and the base have a pair of first side walls and a pair of second side walls, each of the first side walls being longer than each of the second side walls; and

at least one hinge extending from a second side wall of the cover to a second side wall of the base such that, when the substrate holder is in a closed position, the cover is configured to fold onto the base to secure the substrate and gasket between the cover and the base.

16. The support device of claim 15, wherein the cover and the base are pivotably connected by the at least one hinge.

17. The support device of claim 15 or 16, wherein the second surface of the substrate rests on top of the base of the substrate holder.

18. The support device of any one of claims 15-17, wherein the gasket is positionally aligned on the surface of the cover by the plurality of ribs.

19. The support device of any one of claims 15-18, wherein the gasket is positioned so that when the substrate is secured by the substrate holder, and the substrate holder is in the closed position, a vapor-tight seal is formed between the gasket and the substrate.

20. The support device of any one of claims 15-19, wherein the cover comprises a plurality of apertures.

21. The support device of claim 20, wherein the gasket comprises a plurality of openings, wherein the plurality of openings is positioned so that when the substrate is secured by the substrate holder, and the substrate holder is in a closed position, the plurality of apertures is aligned with the plurality of openings.

22. The support device of any one of claims 15-21, wherein the gasket is configured to

prevent fluid transport between the plurality of openings when the cover is in the closed position.

23. The support device of any one of claims 15-22, wherein the substrate is a glass slide.

24. The support device of any one of claims 15-23, wherein the base comprises a lip extending around the perimeter of the base, the lip configured to retain the substrate within the base.

25. The support device of any one of claims 15-24, wherein the first surface of the substrate engages with at least one of the plurality of ribs when the substrate holder is in the closed position.

26. The support device of any one of claims 15-25, wherein the base comprises an opening exposing at least a portion of the second surface of the substrate when the substrate is placed in the base.

27. The support device of any one of claims 15-26, wherein a first side wall of the cover is generally orthogonal to the second side wall of the cover.

28. A method of incubating a sample disposed on a sample region of a substrate, the method comprising:

mounting the substrate on a support device;

positioning the substrate and support device on a heating apparatus; and

activating the heating apparatus to transfer heat to the sample,

wherein the support device comprises:

a substrate comprising a first surface and a second surface, the first surface of the substrate being a substrate configured for receiving a sample; and

a substrate holder comprising:

a cover configured to receive a gasket, the cover comprising a plurality of ribs extending from a surface of the cover;

a base configured to receive the substrate; and

at least one pair of locking tabs, each locking tab comprising a moveable tab coupled to a first side wall of the cover and a non-moveable tab coupled to a first side wall of the base,

wherein the moveable tab is configured to engage with the non-moveable tab to releasably secure the cover to the base, and

wherein the cover and the base are pivotably connected by at least one hinge extending from a second side wall of the cover to a second side wall of the base such that when the substrate holder is in a closed position, the cover is configured to fold over the base to secure the substrate and gasket between the cover and the base.

29. The method of claim 28, wherein the substrate is a glass slide.

30. The method of claim 28 or 29, wherein, when the substrate holder is coupled to the support device, at least 60% of the sample region is overlaid by the support device.

Description:
IMAGING SUPPORT DEVICES

CROSS-REFERENCE TO REUATED APPUICATIONS

This application claims priority to International Application No. PCT/US2019/065100, having an International Filing Date of December 6, 2019, U.S. Provisional Patent Application No. 62/839,294, filed April 26, 2019, U.S. Provisional Patent Application No. 62/839,575, filed April 26, 2019, U.S. Provisional Patent Application No. 62/931,779, filed November 6, 2019, U.S. Provisional Patent Application No. 62/931,587, filed November 6, 2019, and U.S. Provisional Patent Application No. 62/933,318, filed November 8, 2019.

The contents of these applications are incorporated by reference in their entireties.

BACKGROUND

Cells within a tissue of a subject have differences in cell morphology and/or function due to varied analyte levels (e.g., gene and/or protein expression) within the different cells. The specific position of a cell within a tissue (e.g., the cell’s position relative to neighboring cells or the cell’s position relative to the tissue microenvironment) can affect, e.g., the cell’s morphology, differentiation, fate, viability, proliferation, behavior, and signaling and cross talk with other cells in the tissue.

Spatial heterogeneity has been previously studied using techniques that only provide data for a small handful of analytes in the context of an intact tissue or a portion of a tissue, or provide a lot of analyte data for single cells, but fail to provide information regarding the position of the single cell in a parent biological sample (e.g., tissue sample).

Furthermore, imaging systems used on spatial analyte data are inherently variable in their resolution and sensitivity. This is due in large part to the variability of manufacturers for imaging system components in addition to the arrangement of the imaging apparatus, differences between various types of imaging apparatuses, and image acquisition softwares. The image quality is further impacted by alterations in the image acquisition performed by the user. This problem becomes more apparent when trying to image samples of an unknown fluorescent intensity or by having samples imaged by users of varying experience.

Moreover, in a laboratory environment, a variety of processing protocols are used to prepare a sample for analysis. These protocols can be performed in test tubes, on slides, or more generally, on a sample that is supported by a substrate. Certain protocols are performed at a stable, controlled temperatures to ensure the fidelity of the sample and protocol reagents. Other protocols involve temperature cycling and other steps in which the temperature of the sample is adjusted in controlled fashion. To heat the sample and its supporting substrate during a protocol, a thermocycler, heating plate, or other heating device may be used. As one example, thermocyclers can be as part of polymerase chain reaction protocols for nucleic acid amplification and in transcription and reverse transcription analytical sequences. Controlled heating of samples in thermocyclers and other heating devices also can occur to facilitate temperature-sensitive reactions for restriction enzyme digestion and rapid diagnostics, for example.

In addition, a biological sample may be placed on a solid support to be analyzed for identification or characterization of an analyte, such as DNA, RNA or other genetic material, within the sample. Printed guides may help improve placement of a sample on a solid support.

Current methods and devices to support biological samples (e.g., during spatial analysis and/or heating) often lack portability, do not provide access to specific sample regions or wells, and/or do not provide a vapor-tight seal for preventing cross-contamination between the sample regions or wells.

SUMMARY

Embodiments, disclosed below include support devices for substrates including a sample region and methods of incubating a sample disposed on a sample region of a substrate. In some embodiments, a distinct advantage of the support devices and methods of the present disclosure is its construction as a one-piece device that provides ease of use to the user. For example, the one-piece design that facilitates set-up and reduces time spent by the user in assembling the device and substrate. In some embodiments, the user can easily insert a substrate into the devices described without fastening of multiple pieces. In some embodiments, the user does not use any tools to aid in the insertion of the substrate into the device or to aid in removing the substrate from the device. For example, the user may not need to use any type of fastener to assemble the support device nor to secure a substrate to the support device, thereby providing a more efficient way of supporting a biological sample. In other examples, the devices disclosed herein may alternatively use one or more fasteners to assemble the support device and/or to secure a substrate to the support device.

In some embodiments, another distinct advantage of the support devices and methods of the present disclosure is its design that provides access to specific sample region in a substrate via alignment the plurality of apertures in the substrate holder and the plurality of openings in the gasket. In some embodiments, an additional advantage of the support devices and methods of the present disclosure is the uniform pressure applied to the substrate via the gasket and/or the rib or the plurality of ribs when the support device is in a closed position. Furthermore, a vapor-tight and/or air-tight seal is formed between the gasket and the substrate when the substrate holder is in the closed position. Such vapor-tight and/or air-tight seal can prevent transport of fluid between the plurality of openings of the gasket. The vapor-tight and/or air-tight seal can further prevent cross-contamination of biological samples via, e.g., the leakage of solution or fluid from a first sample region to a second sample region. Yet another advantage of the support devices and methods described in this disclosure, in some embodiments, is the minimization of shear forces on the substrate, for example, on the area of the substrate in proximity to the hinge or hinges. The minimization of shear forces can prevent damage to the substrate (e.g., breakage or cracking).

The devices provided herein can provide consistent and even heating to a substrate surface. Even heating can be critical to ensuring that preparative reactions performed on a sample supported by the substrate occur according to established protocols and achieve desired outcomes.

Further, heating a substrate (e.g., a glass slide) to temperatures above room temperature can cause condensation to form on an upper surface of an enclosed substrate well if the substrate is heated without an upper lid. Condensation can change the composition of reaction mixtures in the substrate wells, inhibiting preparative reactions, and/or producing unpredictable results. The devices described in this disclosure can be used to reduce or prevent condensation from forming in substrate wells via the vapor-tight and/or air-tight seal produced by the gasket.

Certain types of thermocyclers and heating devices are purpose-built for particular types of substrates such as multi-well substrates. Loading other types of substrates such as standard microscope slides into such devices can lead to uneven substrate heating. The devices described in this disclosure can be used to support substrates within heating devices that are not designed for such substrates, ensuring that adequate and even heat transfer occurs to the substrates. In particular, the devices can be used to adapt thermocyclers designed to accept multi-well substrates so that other types of substrates can be effectively heated within the thermocyclers as part of a sample preparation protocol.

In some embodiments, the devices of the disclosure allow a surface of the substrate to directly contact the surface of a heating device (e.g., a thermocycler), thereby permitting uniform heating throughout the substrate. That is, in some embodiments, no additional substrates or housing elements are required to be positioned in between the heat source and the substrates to be heated. In addition, because the devices of the disclosure allow the surface of the substrate to directly contact the surface of a heating device (e.g., a

thermocycler), the temperature of the substrate can be more easily controlled by the user and can be heated to a desired temperature in less time than when using devices that do not allow surface contact between the substrate and the heating device (e.g., a thermocycler). Thus, samples (e.g., a biological samples) on the substrate can be heated uniformly and in a controlled manner.

In one aspect, this disclosure is directed to a support device for a substrate including a sample region. The support device includes a substrate including a first surface and a second surface, the first surface configured for receiving a sample; and a substrate holder including: a cover configured to receive a gasket, the cover including a plurality of ribs extending from a surface of the cover; a base configured to receive the substrate; and at least one pair of locking tabs, each locking tab including a moveable tab coupled to a first side wall of the cover and a non-moveable tab coupled to a first side wall of the base, wherein the moveable tab is configured to engage with the non-moveable tab to releasably secure the cover to the base, and wherein the cover and the base are pivotably connected by at least one hinge.

In some embodiments, at least one hinge extends from a second side wall of the cover to a second side wall of the base. In some embodiments, the second surface of the substrate rests on top of the base of the substrate holder. In some embodiments, the gasket is positionally aligned on the surface of the cover by the plurality of ribs. In some embodiments, the gasket is positioned so that when the substrate is secured by the substrate holder, and the substrate holder is in the closed position, a vapor-tight seal is formed between the gasket and the substrate. In some embodiments, the cover includes a plurality of apertures. In some embodiments, the gasket includes a plurality of openings, wherein the plurality of openings are positioned so that when the substrate is secured by the substrate holder, and the substrate holder is in a closed position, the plurality of apertures are aligned with the plurality of openings. In some embodiments, the gasket is configured to prevent fluid transport between the plurality of openings when the cover is in the closed position. In some embodiments, the substrate is a glass slide. In some embodiments, the base includes a lip extending around the perimeter of the base, the lip configured to retain the substrate within the base. In some embodiments, the first surface of the substrate engages with at least one of the plurality of ribs when the substrate holder is in the closed position. In some embodiments, the base includes an opening exposing at least a portion of the second surface of the substrate when the substrate is placed in the base. In some embodiments, the first side wall of the cover is generally orthogonal to the second side wall of the cover. In some embodiments, when the substrate holder is in a closed position, the cover is configured to fold onto the base.

In another aspect, this disclosure is directed to support devices for a substrate including a sample region. The support device includes a substrate including a first surface and a second surface, the first surface of the substrate is a substrate configured for receiving a sample; a substrate holder including: a cover configured to receive a gasket, the cover including a plurality of ribs extending from a surface of the cover; a base configured to receive a substrate, wherein the cover and the base have a pair of first side walls and a pair of second side walls, each of the first side walls being longer than each of the second side walls; and at least one hinge extending from a second side wall of the cover to a second side wall of the base such that, when the substrate holder is in a closed position, the cover is configured to fold onto the base to secure the substrate and gasket between the cover and the base.

In some embodiments, the cover and the base are pivotably connected by the at least one hinge. In some embodiments, the second surface of the substrate rests on top of the base of the substrate holder. In some embodiments, the gasket is positionally aligned on the surface of the cover by the plurality of ribs. In some embodiments, the gasket is positioned so that when the substrate is secured by the substrate holder, and the substrate holder is in the closed position, a vapor-tight seal is formed between the gasket and the substrate. In some embodiments, the cover includes a plurality of apertures. In some embodiments, the gasket includes a plurality of openings, wherein the plurality of openings is positioned so that when the substrate is secured by the substrate holder, and the substrate holder is in a closed position, the plurality of apertures is aligned with the plurality of openings. In some embodiments, the gasket is configured to prevent fluid transport between the plurality of openings when the cover is in the closed position. In some embodiments, the substrate is a glass slide. In some embodiments, the base includes a lip extending around the perimeter of the base, the lip configured to retain the substrate within the base. In some embodiments, the first surface of the substrate engages with at least one of the plurality of ribs when the substrate holder is in the closed position. In some embodiments, the base includes an opening exposing at least a portion of the second surface of the substrate when the substrate is placed in the base. In some embodiments, a first side wall of the cover is generally orthogonal to the second side wall of the cover.

In another aspect, this disclosure is directed to methods of incubating a sample disposed on a sample region of a substrate. The methods include: mounting the substrate on a support device; positioning the substrate and support device on a heating apparatus; and activating the heating apparatus to transfer heat to the sample, wherein the support device includes: a substrate including a first surface and a second surface, the first surface of the substrate being a substrate configured for receiving a sample; and a substrate holder including: a cover configured to receive a gasket, the cover including a plurality of ribs extending from a surface of the cover; a base configured to receive the substrate; and at least one pair of locking tabs, each locking tab including a moveable tab coupled to a first side wall of the cover and a non moveable tab coupled to a first side wall of the base, wherein the moveable tab is configured to engage with the non-moveable tab to releasably secure the cover to the base, and wherein the cover and the base are pivotably connected by at least one hinge extending from a second side wall of the cover to a second side wall of the base such that when the substrate holder is in a closed position, the cover is configured to fold over the base to secure the substrate and gasket between the cover and the base.

In some embodiments, the substrate is a glass slide. In some embodiments, when the substrate holder is coupled to the support device, at least 60% of the sample region is overlaid by the support device.

In another aspect, this disclosure is directed to a support device for a substrate including a sample region, the support device including a plate including a platform, a plurality of members connected to a first surface of the platform, and a support member connected to a second surface of the platform, and a substrate holder including a substrate mount and an attachment mechanism to couple the substrate holder to the support member. The substrate holder is configured so that when a substrate is secured by the substrate mount and the substrate holder is coupled to the support member, at least 60% of the sample region is overlaid by the support member.

In some embodiments, a member of the plurality of members is dimensioned to be received by a region of a heating device. In some embodiments, the region of the heating device includes a heat transfer element configured to transfer heat to a well of a multi-well substrate. In some embodiments, the heat transfer element includes a recess in a heating member. In some embodiments, the plurality of members form a two-dimensional array on the first surface, and the plurality of members are spaced so that they align with wells on a multi-well substrate. In some embodiments, the substrate mount includes a recess formed in the substrate holder. In some embodiments, the substrate mount includes at least one fastener configured to secure the substrate within the recess. In some embodiments, the attachment mechanism includes an aperture configured to receive the support member. In some embodiments, the attachment mechanism includes one or more extensions configured to engage with corresponding recesses in the support member. In some embodiments, the sample region includes a plurality of wells on the substrate. In some embodiments, the substrate holder includes a recess dimensioned to receive a gasket. In some embodiments, the substrate holder includes a gasket positioned so that when the substrate is secured by the substrate mount, a vapor-tight seal is formed between the substrate holder and the substrate.

In some embodiments, the sample region includes a plurality of wells on the substrate, and the gasket includes a plurality of apertures, wherein an aperature of the plurality of apperatures is positioned so that when the substrate is secured by the substrate mount, the aperture is aligned with a well. In some embodiments, the gasket is configured to prevent fluid transport between apertures when the substrate is secured by the substrate mount.

In some embodiments, the substrate holder includes a plurality of apertures, wherein an aperture of the plurality of apertures is aligned with anaperture of the gasket. In some embodiments, the sample region is completely overlaid by the support member. In some embodiments, the substrate holder is configured so that when a substrate is secured by the substrate mount and the substrate holder is coupled to the support member, at least a portion of the substrate contacts the support member. In some embodiments, the portion of the substrate that contacts the support member includes at least a part of the sample region or a part of the substrate that is on an opposite side of the substrate from the sample region. In some embodiments, the support member contacts all of the substrate. In some embodiments, the attachment mechanism is configured so that the substrate holder couples to the support member in a single orientation.

In some embodiments, the substrate holder includes a first member, a second member, and an engagement mechanism configured to secure the first member to the second member.

The substrate mount is positioned in the first member or the second member. In some embodiments, the engagement mechanism is adjustable. In some embodiments, the engagement mechanism includes one or more thumbscrews. In some embodiments, the first member includes the substrate mount, and wherein the substrate mount includes a recess formed in the first member. In some embodiments, the first member includes at least one fastener configured to secure the substrate within the recess. In some embodiments, the first member includes the attachment mechanism, and wherein the attachment mechanism includes an aperture configured to receive the support member. In some embodiments, the second member includes a recess dimensioned to receive a gasket. In some embodiments, the second member includes a gasket positioned so that when the substrate is secured by the substrate mount and the first member is secured to the second member, a vapor-tight seal is formed between the substrate holder and the substrate.

In some embodiments, the sample region includes a plurality of wells on the substrate, the gasket includes a plurality of apertures, wherein an aperture of the plurality of apertures is positioned so that when the substrate is secured by the substrate mount, the aperture is aligned with a well. In some embodiments, the gasket is configured to prevent fluid transport between gasket apertures when the substrate is secured by the substrate mount and the first member is secured to the second member. In some embodiments, the second member includes a plurality of apertures, wherein an aperture of the plurality of apertures is aligned with an aperature of the plurality of apertures of the gasket.

In another aspect, this disclosure is directed to a method of incubating a sample disposed on a sample region of a substrate. The method includes mounting the substrate on a support device, positioning the substrate and the support device in a heating apparatus, and activating the heating apparatus to transfer heat to the sample.

The support device includes a plate including a platform, a plurality of members connected to a first surface of the platform, and a support member connected to a second surface of the platform, and a substrate holder including a substrate mount and an attachment mechanism to couple the substrate holder to the support member. The substrate holder is configured so that when the substrate is secured by the substrate mount and the substrate holder is coupled to the support member, at least 60% of the sample region is overlaid by the support member.

In another aspect, this disclosure is directed to a support device for a substrate including a sample region. The support device includes a plate includes a platform, a plurality of members connected to a first surface of the platform, and a support member connected to a second surface of the platform, a substrate mount including a first surface and a second surface, the first surface being coupled to the support member, and a substrate holder including an attachment mechanism to couple the substrate mount to the substrate holder. The second surface of the substrate mount is a substrate for receiving a sample.

In some embodiments, the substrate mount is a glass slide. In some embodiments, when the substrate holder is coupled to the support member, at least 60% of the sample region is overlaid by the support member. In some embodiments, when the substrate holder is coupled to the support member, at least 75% of the sample region is overlaid by the support member. In some embodiments, when the substrate holder is coupled to the support member, at least 90% of the sample region is overlaid by the support member. In some embodiments, when the substrate holder is coupled to the support member, the sample region is fully overlaid by the support member. In some embodiments, a member of the plurality of members is dimensioned to be received by a region of a heating device. In some

embodiments, the region of the heating device includes a heat transfer element configured to transfer heat to a well of a multi-well substrate. In some embodiments, the heat transfer elements includes recesses in a heating member. In some embodiments, the plurality of members form a two-dimensional array on the first surface, and the plurality of members are spaced so that they align with wells on a multi-well substrate. In some embodiments, the attachment mechanism includes a fastener configured to engage the substrate mount. In some embodiments, the attachment mechanism includes an aperture configured to receive the support member. In some embodiments, the attachment mechanism includes one or more tabs configured to engage with the substrate mount. In some embodiments, the sample region includes a plurality of wells on the substrate. In some embodiments, the substrate holder includes a gasket positioned so that when the substrate is secured by the substrate mount, a vapor-tight seal is formed between the substrate holder and the substrate. In some embodiments, the sample region includes a plurality of wells on the substrate, and wherein the gasket includes a plurality of apertures, wherein an aperture of the plurality of apertures is positioned so that when a substrate is secured by the substrate mount, the aperture of the gasket is aligned with a well. In some embodiments, the gasket is configured to prevent fluid transport between apertures of the gasket when the substrate is secured by the substrate mount. In some embodiments, the substrate holder includes a plurality of apertures, wherein an aperature of the plurality of aperatures of the substrate holder is aligned with an aperture of the gasket. In some embodiments, the sample region is completely overlaid by the support member. In some embodiments, the substrate holder is configured so that when the substrate is held by the substrate mount and the substrate holder is coupled to the support member, at least a portion of the substrate contacts the support member. In some embodiments, the portion of the substrate that contacts the support member includes at least a part of the sample region or a part of the substrate that is on an opposite side of the substrate from the sample region. In some embodiments, the support member contacts the entire substrate. In some embodiments, the attachment mechanism is configured so that the substrate holder couples to the support member in a single orientation.

In another aspect, this disclosure is directed to support device for a substrate including a sample region. The support device includes a substrate mount including a first surface and a second surface, the first surface coupled to the support member, a substrate holder including an attachment mechanism to couple the substrate mount to the substrate holder, a gasket, a plurality of ribs extending perpendicular from a bottom surface of the substrate holder, and an engagement mechanism configured to secure the substrate mount to the gasket. The second surface of the substrate mount is a substrate for receiving a sample, and the gasket is positioned between the substrate mount and the bottom surface of the substrate holder.

In some embodiments, the engagement mechanism is adjustable. In some

embodiments, the engagement mechanism includes one or more tabs. In some embodiments, the engagement mechanism includes one or more press latches. In some embodiments, the substrate holder includes at least one fastener configured to secure the substrate mount within the recess. In some embodiments, the substrate holder includes a recess dimensioned to receive the gasket. In some embodiments, the sgasket is positioned so that when the substrate mount is secured by the substrate holder, a vapor-tight seal is formed between the substrate holder and the substrate mount. In some embodiments, the sample region includes a plurality of wells on the substrate mount, and the gasket includes a first plurality of apertures, wherein an aperture of the first plurality of apertures is positioned so that when the substrate mount is secured by the substrate holder, the aperture is aligned with a well. In some embodiments, the gasket is configured to prevent fluid transport between the first plurality of apertures when the substrate mount is secured by the substrate holder. In some embodiments, the substrate holder includes a second plurality of apertures, wherein an aperture of the second plurality of apertures is aligned with an aperture of the first plurality of apertures.

In another aspect, this disclosure is directed to a method of incubating a sample disposed on a sample region of a substrate. The method includes mounting the substrate on a support device, positioning the substrate and support device in a heating apparatus, and activating the heating apparatus to transfer heat to the sample. The support device includes a plate including a platform, a plurality of members connected to a first surface of the platform, and a support member connected to a second surface of the platform, a substrate mount including a first surface and a second surface, the first surface being coupled to the support member, and a substrate holder including an attachment mechanism to couple the substrate mount to the substrate holder. The second surface of the substrate mount includes a substrate for receiving a sample.

In some embodiments, the substrate mount is a glass slide. In some embodiments, when the substrate holder is coupled to the support member, at least 60% of the sample region is overlaid by the support member. In another aspect, this disclosure is directed to a a support device for a substrate including a sample region. The support device including a substrate mount including a first surface and a second surface, the second surface of the substrate mount is a substrate configured for receiving a sample, a substrate holder including a first portion configured to receive a gasket, the first portion including a plurality of ribs extending from a surface of the substrate holder; and a second portion configured to receive a substrate mount. The first and second portions are coupled together by a hinge such that when the substrate holder is in a closed state, the first portion is configured to fold over the second portion to secure the substrate mount between the first and second portions.

In some embodiments, the substrate mount is a glass slide. In some embodiments, the substrate holder includes a gasket disposed between the first portion and the second portion of the substrate holder. In some embodiments, the first portion of the substrate holder includes a releasable engagement mechanism configured to secure the first portion to the second portion when the substrate holder is in the closed state. In some embodiments, the first surface of the substrate mount engages with at least one of the plurality of ribs extending from a surface of the substrate holder. In some embodiments, the second portion defines a recessed cavity formed in the substrate holder configured to receive the substrate mount. In some embodiments, the second portion defines a cavity configured to receive the substrate mount. In some embodiments, the second portion defines an opening within the recessed cavity, and wherein the opening exposes at least a portion of one side of the substrate mount when the substrate holder is in the closed state.

In another aspect, this disclosure is directed to a sample holder, including a first member including a first retaining mechanism configured to retain a first substrate including a sample, a second member including a second retaining mechanism configured to retain a second substrate including a reagent medium, and an alignment mechanism connected to one or both of the first and second members, and configured to align the first and second members such that the sample contacts at least a portion of the reagent medium when the first and second members are aligned.

In some embodiments, the alignment mechanism includes a rotating actuator connected to the first and second members. In some embodiments, the alignment mechanism includes one or more connectors positioned on one or bothof the first and second members, and one or more receivers positioned on one or bothof the first and second members, wherein the one or more receivers are positioned to engage with the one or more connectors. In some embodiments, the rotating actuator includes a hinge. In some embodiments, the rotating actuator includes a folding member. In some embodiments, the rotating actuator includes at least one arm. In some embodiments, the first retaining mechanism includes a recess dimensioned to receive the first substrate. In some embodiments, the sample holder further includes a gasket positioned within the recess and configured to maintain an interference fit between the recess and the first substrate. In some embodiments, the first retaining mechanism includes one or more members configured to apply a force to the first substrate to maintain contact between the first substrate and the first member.

In some embodiments, the second retaining mechanism includes a recess dimensioned to receive the second substrate. In some embodiments, the second retaining mechanism includes one or more members configured to apply a force to the second substrate to maintain contact between the second substrate and the second member. In some embodiments, the reagent medium includes at least one of: a solution including a permeabilization reagent, a solid permeabilization reagent, and a hydrogel compound including a permeabilization reagent. In some embodiments, the solution including the permeabilization agent includes greater than about 2 w/v % sodium dodecyl sulfate (SDS). In some embodiments, the solution including the permeabilization agent includes about 8 w/v % to about 12 w/v % SDS. In some embodiments, the solution including the permeabilization agent includes proteinase K. In some embodiments, the solution including the permeabilization agent includes greater than 2 w/v %N-lauroylsarcosine or a sodium salt thereof. In some embodiments, the first member includes an aperture positioned so that when the first substrate is retained, the aperture is aligned with a sample region of the first substrate. In some embodiments, the second member includes at least one aperture positioned so that when the first substrate is retained and the first and second members are aligned by the alignment mechanism, anaperture of the at least one aperature is aligned with at least a portion of a sample region of the first substrate.

In some embodiments, the sample holder further includes a reagent well formed by one or more bounding surfaces of the at least one aperture and by a back surface of the second substrate, wherein a reagent solution added to the reagent well is contained by the bounding surfaces and permeates through the back surface of the second substrate. In some embodiments, the back surface of the second substrate is opposite to a front surface of the second substrate that faces the sample on the first substrate. In some embodiments, the sample holder further includes a first adjustment mechanism connected to the first member and configured to translate the first substrate in at least one direction parallel to a surface of the first substrate that supports the sample. In some embodiments, the alignment mechanism is configured to maintain a separation between the first and second substrates when the first and second substrates are aligned. In some embodiments, the alignment mechanism is configured to maintain the separation such that at least a portion of the sample on the first substrate contacts at least a portion of the reagent medium on the second substrate. In some embodiments, the separation between the first and second substrates is between 50 microns and 1 mm, measured in a direction orthogonal to a surface of the first substrate that supports the sample.

In some embodiments, the separation between the first and second substrates is between 50 microns and 500 microns. In some embodiments, the alignment mechanism is configured to maintain the first and second substrates approximately parallel when the first and second substrates are aligned so that an angle between the first and second substrates is two degrees or less. In some embodiments, the angle is 0.5 degrees or less. In some embodiments, the sample holder further includes one or more spacing members connected to one or both of the first and second members positioned so that when the first and second substrates are aligned, the one or more spacing members are between the first and second members. In some embodiments, the sample holder further includes a second adjustment mechanism configured to adjust a distance of the separation in direction orthogonal to a surface of the first substrate that supports the sample. In some embodiments, the second adjustment mechanism is a component of the alignment mechanism. In some embodiments, the second adjustment mechanism is connected to one or both of the first member and the second member.

In another aspect, this disclosure is directed to a support device for a substrate including a sample. The support device includes any of the sample holder described above; and a plate including a platform, a plurality of members connected to a first surface of the platform, and a support member connected to a second surface of the platform. The plate is configured to connect to the sample holder.

In some embodiments, the sample holder and the plate are configured so that when the sample holder and the plate are connected, at least 75% of a region of the first substrate that contacts the sample is overlaid by the support member. In some embodiments, a member of the plurality of members is dimensioned to be received by a region of a heating device. In some embodiments, the region of the heating device includes a heat transfer element configured to transfer heat to a well of a multi-well substrate. In some embodiments, the heat transfer element includes a recess in a heating member. In some embodiments, the support devicer further includes an attachment mechanism configured to couple the support member to the sample holder. In some embodiments, the attachment mechanism includes one or both of an aperture and a recess formed in the first member of the sample holder and configured to receive the support member.

In some embodiments, the attachment mechanism includes one or more extension members connected to the first member of the sample holder and configured to engage with corresponding recess(es) in the support member. In some embodiments, the attachment mechanism includes one or more extension members connected to the support member and configured to engage with corresponding recess(es) in the first member of the sample holder. In some embodiments, the plurality of members form a two-dimensional array on the first surface of the platform, and the plurality of members are spaced so that they align with wells on a multi-well substrate. In some embodiments, the region of the first substrate that contacts the sample is completely overlaid by the support member. In some embodiments, the sample holder and the plate are configured so that when the sample holder and the plate are connected, at least a portion of the first substrate contacts the support member. In some embodiments, the portion of the first substrate that contacts the support member includes a part of the substrate that is on an opposite side of the first substrate from a region of the first substrate that contacts the sample. In some embodiments, the portion of the first substrate that contacts the support member includes at least 90% of a surface of the substrate that is opposite to a surface of the first substrate that contacts the sample. In some embodiments, the attachment mechanism is configured so that the sample holder couples to the support member in a single orientation.

All publications, patents, patent applications, and information available on the internet and mentioned in this specification are herein incorporated by reference to the same extent as if each individual publication, patent, patent application, or item of information was specifically and individually indicated to be incorporated by reference. To the extent publications, patents, patent applications, and items of information incorporated by reference contradict the disclosure contained in the specification, the specification is intended to supersede and/or take precedence over any such contradictory material.

Where values are described in terms of ranges, it should be understood that the description includes the disclosure of all possible sub-ranges within such ranges, as well as specific numerical values that fall within such ranges irrespective of whether a specific numerical value or specific sub-range is expressly stated.

The term“each,” when used in reference to a collection of items, is intended to identify an individual item in the collection but does not necessarily refer to every item in the collection, unless expressly stated otherwise, or unless the context of the usage clearly indicates otherwise.

Various embodiments of the features of this disclosure are described herein. However, it should be understood that such embodiments are provided merely by way of example, and numerous variations, changes, and substitutions can occur to those skilled in the art without departing from the scope of this disclosure. It should also be understood that various alternatives to the specific embodiments described herein are also within the scope of this disclosure.

DESCRIPTION OF DRAWINGS

The following drawings illustrate certain embodiments of the features and advantages of this disclosure. These embodiments are not intended to limit the scope of the appended claims in any manner. Like reference symbols in the drawings indicate like elements.

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of an example support device.

FIG. 2 is an exploded view of the support device of FIG. 1.

FIG. 3A is a bottom view of the support device of FIG. 1.

FIG. 3B is a top view of the support device of FIG. 1.

FIG. 3C is a side view of the support device of FIG. 1 shown along a first side wall of a base of the support device.

FIG. 3D is a side view of the support device of FIG. 1 shown along a second side wall of the base of the support device.

FIG. 4A is a top view of the support device of FIG. 1 in an open position.

FIG. 4B is a side view of the support device of FIG. 1 in an open position along a first side wall of the base of the support device.

FIG. 4C is a side view of the support device of FIG. 1 in an open position along a second side wall of the base of the support device.

FIG. 5A is a side view of the support device of FIG. 1 in a near closed position.

FIG. 5B is a side view of the support device of FIG. 1 in a closed position.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

I. Introduction This disclosure describes devices and methods for spatial analysis of biological samples. This section describes certain general terminology, analytes, sample types, and preparative steps that are referred to in later sections of the disclosure.

1. Spatial Analysis

Tissues and cells can be obtained from any source. For example, tissues and cells can be obtained from single-cell or multicellular organisms (e.g., a mammal). Tissues and cells obtained from a mammal, e.g., a human, often have varied analyte levels (e.g., gene and/or protein expression) which can result in differences in cell morphology and/or function. The position of a cell or a subset of cells (e.g., neighboring cells and/or non-neighboring cells) within a tissue can affect, e.g., the cell’s fate, behavior, morphology, and signaling and cross talk with other cells in the tissue. Information regarding the differences in analyte levels (gene and/or protein expression) within different cells in a tissue of a mammal can also help physicians select or administer a treatment that will be effective and can allow researchers to identify and elucidate differences in cell morphology and/or cell function in the single-cell or multicellular organisms (e.g., a mammal) based on the detected differences in analyte levels within different cells in the tissue. Differences in analyte levels within different cells in a tissue of a mammal can also provide information on how tissues (e.g., healthy and diseased tissues) function and/or develop. Differences in analyte levels within different cells in a tissue of a mammal can also provide information of different mechanisms of disease pathogenesis in a tissue and mechanism of action of a therapeutic treatment within a tissue. Differences in analyte levels within different cells in a tissue of a mammal can also provide information on drug resistance mechanisms and the development of the same in a tissue of a mammal.

Differences in the presence or absence of analytes within different cells in a tissue of a multicellular organism (e.g., a mammal) can provide information on drug resistance mechanisms and the development of the same in a tissue of a multicellular organism.

The support devices provided herein can be used with spatial analysis methodologies that provide a vast amount of analyte level and/or expression data for a variety of multiple analytes within a sample at high spatial resolution, e.g., while retaining the native spatial context. Spatial analysis methods include, e.g., the use of a capture probe including a spatial barcode (e.g., a nucleic acid sequence that provides information as to the position of the capture probe within a cell or a tissue sample (e.g., mammalian cell or a mammalian tissue sample) and a capture domain that is capable of binding to an analyte (e.g., a protein and/or nucleic acid) produced by and/or present in a cell. The binding of an analyte to a capture probe can be detected using a number of different methods, e.g., nucleic acid sequencing, fluorophore detection, nucleic acid amplification, detection of nucleic acid ligation, and/or detection of nucleic acid cleavage products. In some examples, the detection is used to associate a specific spatial barcode with a specific analyte produced by and/or present in a cell (e.g., a mammalian cell).

Capture probes can be, e.g., atached to a surface, e.g., a solid array, a bead, or a coversbp. In some examples, capture probes are not atached to a surface. In some examples, capture probes can be encapsulated within, embedded within, or layered on a surface of a permeable composition (e.g., any of the substrates described herein). For example, capture probes can be encapsulated or disposed within a permeable bead (e.g., a gel bead). In some examples, capture probes can be encapsulated within, embedded within, or layered on a surface of a substrate (e.g., any of the exemplary substrates described herein, such as a hydrogel or a porous membrane).

In some examples, a cell or a tissue sample including a cell are contacted with capture probes atached to a substrate (e.g., a surface of a substrate), and the cell or tissue sample is permeabilized to allow analytes to be released from the cell and bind to the capture probes attached to the substrate. In some examples, analytes released from a cell can be actively directed to the capture probes atached to a substrate using a variety of methods, e.g., electrophoresis, chemical gradient, pressure gradient, fluid flow, or magnetic field.

Non-limiting aspects of support devices are described in PCT/US2019/065100, the entire contents of which are incorporated herein by reference, and can be used herein in any combination. Further non-limiting aspects of support devices are described herein.

(a) General Terminology

(i) Biological Samples

The devices and methods described in this disclosure can be used to support substrates configured to receive on or more biological samples. As used herein,“biological sample” is a sample that can be obtained from a subject for analysis using any of a variety of techniques including, but not limited to, biopsy, surgery, and laser capture microscopy (LCM), and generally includes cells and/or other biological material from the subject. In addition to the subjects described below, a biological sample can be obtained from non- mammalian organisms (e.g., a plants, an insect, an arachnid, a nematode (e.g.,

Caenorhabditis elegans), a fungi, an amphibian, or a fish (e.g., zebrafish)). A biological sample can be obtained from a prokaryote such as a bacterium, e.g., Escherichia coli,

Staphylococci or Mycoplasma pneumoniae ; an archaea; a virus such as Hepatitis C virus or human immunodeficiency virus; or a viroid. A biological sample can be obtained from a eukaryote, such as a patient derived organoid (PDO) or patient derived xenograft (PDX). The biological sample can include organoids, a miniaturized and simplified version of an organ produced in vitro in three dimensions that shows realistic micro-anatomy. Organoids can be generated from one or more cells from a tissue, embryonic stem cells, and/or induced pluripotent stem cells, which can self-organize in three-dimensional culture owing to their self-renewal and differentiation capacities. In some embodiments, an organoid is a cerebral organoid, an intestinal organoid, a stomach organoid, a lingual organoid, a thyroid organoid, a thymic organoid, a testicular organoid, a hepatic organoid, a pancreatic organoid, an epithelial organoid, a lung organoid, a kidney organoid, a gastruloid, a cardiac organoid, or a retinal organoid. Subjects from which biological samples can be obtained can be healthy or asymptomatic individuals, individuals that have or are suspected of having a disease (e.g., cancer) or a pre-disposition to a disease, and/or individuals that are in need of therapy or suspected of needing therapy.

Biological samples can be derived from a homogeneous culture or population of the subjects or organisms mentioned herein or alternatively from a collection of several different organisms, for example, in a community or ecosystem.

Biological samples can include one or more diseased cells. A diseased cell can have altered metabolic properties, gene expression, protein expression, and/or morphologic features. Examples of diseases include inflammatory disorders, metabolic disorders, nervous system disorders, and cancer. Cancer cells can be derived from solid tumors, hematological malignancies, cell lines, or obtained as circulating tumor cells.

Biological samples can also include fetal cells. For example, a procedure such as amniocentesis can be performed to obtain a fetal cell sample from maternal circulation. Sequencing of fetal cells can be used to identify any of a number of genetic disorders, including, e.g., aneuploidy such as Down’s syndrome, Edwards syndrome, and Patau syndrome. Further, cell surface features of fetal cells can be used to identify any of a number of disorders or diseases.

Biological samples can also include immune cells. Sequence analysis of the immune repertoire of such cells, including genomic, proteomic, and cell surface features, can provide a wealth of information to facilitate an understanding the status and function of the immune system. By way of example, determining the status (e.g., negative or positive) of minimal residue disease (MRD) in a multiple myeloma (MM) patient following autologous stem cell transplantation is considered a predictor of MRD in the MM patient (see, e.g., U.S. Patent Application Publication No. 2018/0156784, the entire contents of which are incorporated herein by reference).

Examples of immune cells in a biological sample include, but are not limited to, B cells, T cells (e.g., cytotoxic T cells, natural killer T cells, regulatory T cells, and T helper cells), natural killer cells, cytokine induced killer (CIK) cells, myeloid cells, such as granulocytes (basophil granulocytes, eosinophil granulocytes, neutrophil

granulocytes/hypersegmented neutrophils), monocytes/macrophages, mast cells, thrombocytes/megakaryocytes, and dendritic cells.

The biological sample can include any number of macromolecules, for example, cellular macromolecules and organelles (e.g., mitochondria and nuclei). The biological sample can be a nucleic acid sample and/or protein sample. The biological sample can be a carbohydrate sample or a lipid sample. The biological sample can be obtained as a tissue sample, such as a tissue section, biopsy, a core biopsy, needle aspirate, or fine needle aspirate. The sample can be a fluid sample, such as a blood sample, urine sample, or saliva sample. The sample can be a skin sample, a colon sample, a cheek swab, a histology sample, a histopathology sample, a plasma or serum sample, a tumor sample, living cells, cultured cells, a clinical sample such as, for example, whole blood or blood-derived products, blood cells, or cultured tissues or cells, including cell suspensions.

Cell-free biological samples can include extracellular polynucleotides. Extracellular polynucleotides can be isolated from a bodily sample, e.g., blood, plasma, serum, urine, saliva, mucosal excretions, sputum, stool, and tears. Abiological sample can include a single analyte of interest, or more than one analyte of interest.

(ii) Subject

As used herein, the term“subject” is an animal, such as a mammal (e.g., human or a non-human simian), or avian (e.g., bird), or other organism, such as a plant. Examples of subjects include, but are not limited to, a mammal such as a rodent, mouse, rat, rabbit, guinea pig, ungulate, horse, sheep, pig, goat, cow, cat, dog, primate (i.e. human or non-human primate); a plant such as Arabidopsis thaliana, com, sorghum, oat, wheat, rice, canola, or soybean; an algae such as Chlamydomonas reinhardtii a nematode such as Caenorhabditis e/egans; an insect such as Drosophila melanogaster, mosquito, fruit fly, or honey bee; an arachnid such as a spider; a fish such as zebrafish; a reptile; an amphibian such as a frog or Xenopus laevis a Dictyostelium discoideum a fungi such as Pneumocystis carinii, Takifugu rubripes, yeast, Saccharamoyces cerevisiae or Schizosaccharomyces pombe or a

Plasmodium falciparum. (iii) Substrate Attachment

In some embodiments, the biological sample can be attached to a substrate. Examples of substrates suitable for this purpose are described in detail below. Attachment of the biological sample can be irreversible or reversible, depending upon the nature of the sample and subsequent steps in the analytical method.

In certain embodiments, the sample can be attached to the substrate reversibly by applying a suitable polymer coating to the substrate, and contacting the sample to the polymer coating. The sample can then be detached from the substrate using an organic solvent that at least partially dissolves the polymer coating. Hydrogels are examples of polymers that are suitable for this purpose.

More generally, in some embodiments, the substrate can be coated or functionalized with one or more substances to facilitate attachment of the sample to the substrate. Suitable substances that can be used to coat or functionalize the substrate include, but are not limited to, lectins, poly-lysine, antibodies, and polysaccharides.

(iv) Substrates

For analytical methods using a substrate (e.g., spatial array-based analytical methods), the substrate functions as a support for direct or indirect attachment of capture probes to features of the array. In addition, in some embodiments, a substrate (e.g., the same substrate or a different substrate) can be used to provide support to a biological sample, particularly, for example, a thin tissue section. Accordingly, as used herein, a“substrate” is a support that is insoluble in aqueous liquid and which allows for positioning of biological samples, analytes, features, and/or capture probes on the substrate.

Further, a“substrate” as used herein, and when not preceded by the modifier “chemical,” refers to a member with at least one surface that generally functions to provide physical support for biological samples, analytes, and/or any of the other chemical and/or physical moieties, agents, and structures that can be used with various analytical methods. Substrates can be formed from a variety of solid materials, gel-based materials, colloidal materials, semi-solid materials (e.g., materials that are at least partially cross-linked), materials that are fully or partially cured, and materials that undergo a phase change or transition to provide physical support. Examples of substrates that can be used in the methods and devices described herein include, but are not limited to, slides (e.g., slides formed from various glasses, slides formed from various polymers), hydrogels, layers and/or films, membranes (e.g., porous membranes), wafers, plates, or combinations thereof. In some embodiments, substrates can optionally include functional elements such as recesses, protruding structures, microfluidic elements (e.g., channels, reservoirs, electrodes, valves, seals), and various markings, as will be discussed in further detail below.

1) Substrate Attributes

A substrate can generally have any suitable form or format that can be accommodated by the device disclosed herein. For example, a substrate can be flat, curved, e.g., convexly or concavely curved towards the area where the interaction between a biological sample, e.g., tissue sample, and a substrate takes place. In some embodiments, a substrate is flat, e.g., planar, chip, or slide. A substrate can contain one or more patterned surfaces within the substrate (e.g., channels, wells, projections, ridges, divots, etc.).

A substrate can be of any desired shape. For example, a substrate can be typically a thin, flat shape (e.g., a square or a rectangle). In some embodiments, a substrate structure has rounded comers (e.g., for increased safety or robustness). In some embodiments, a substrate structure has one or more cut-off comers (e.g., for use with a slide clamp or cross-table). In some embodiments, where a substrate structure is flat, the substrate stmcture can be any appropriate type of support having a flat surface (e.g., a chip or a slide such as a microscope slide).

Substrates can optionally include various structures such as, but not limited to, projections, ridges, and channels. A substrate can be micropattemed to limit lateral diffusion (e.g., to prevent overlap of spatial barcodes). A substrate modified with such structures can be modified to allow association of analytes, features (e.g., beads), or probes at individual sites. For example, the sites where a substrate is modified with various structures can be contiguous (e.g., the sites can be located within an area of the substrate that is enclosed by one of the gasket openings when the device is in a closed position) or non-contiguous with other sites (e.g., a first site can be located within a first area of the substrate that is enclosed by a first gasket opening and a second site can be located within a second area of the substrate that is enclosed by a second gasket opening when the support device is in a closed position).

In some embodiments, the surface of a substrate can be modified so that discrete sites are formed that can only have or accommodate a single feature. In some embodiments, the surface of a substrate can be modified so that features adhere to random sites (e.g., random sites within an area of the substrate that is enclosed by a gasket opening when the support device is in a closed position).

In some embodiments, the surface of a substrate is modified to contain one or more wells, using techniques such as (but not limited to) stamping, microetching, or molding techniques. In some embodiments in which a substrate includes one or more wells, the substrate can be a concavity slide or cavity slide. For example, wells can be formed by one or more shallow depressions on the surface of the substrate. In some embodiments, where a substrate includes one or more wells, the wells can be formed by attaching a cassette (e.g., a cassette containing one or more chambers) to a surface of the substrate structure.

In some embodiments, the structures of a substrate (e.g., wells or features) can each bear a different capture probe. Different capture probes attached to each structure can be identified according to the locations of the structures in or on the surface of the substrate. Exemplary substrates include arrays in which separate structures are located on the substrate including, for example, those having wells that accommodate features.

In some embodiments where the substrate is modified to contain one or more structures, including but not limited to, wells, projections, ridges, features, or markings, the structures can include physically altered sites. For example, a substrate modified with various structures can include physical properties, including, but not limited to, physical

configurations, magnetic or compressive forces, chemically functionalized sites, chemically altered sites, and/or electrostatically altered sites. In some embodiments where the substrate is modified to contain various structures, including but not limited to wells, projections, ridges, features, or markings, the structures are applied in a pattern. Alternatively, the structures can be randomly distributed.

The substrate (e.g., or a bead or a feature on an array) can include tens to hundreds of thousands or millions of individual oligonucleotide molecules (e.g., at least about 10,000, 50,000, 100,000, 500,000, 1,000,000, 10,000,000, 100,000,000, 1,000,000,000, or

10,000,000,000 oligonucleotide molecules).

In some embodiments, a substrate includes one or more markings on a surface of a substrate, e.g., to provide guidance for correlating spatial information with the

characterization of the analyte of interest. For example, a substrate can be marked with a grid of lines (e.g., to allow the size of objects seen under magnification to be easily estimated and/or to provide reference areas for counting objects). In some embodiments, fiducial markers can be included on a substrate. Such markings can be made using techniques including, but not limited to, printing, sand-blasting, and depositing on the surface.

A wide variety of different substrates can be used for the foregoing purposes. In general, a substrate can be any suitable support material that can be accommodated by the disclosed device. Exemplary substrates include, but are not limited to, glass, modified and/or functionalized glass, hydrogels, films, membranes, plastics (including e.g., acrylics, polystyrene, copolymers of styrene and other materials, polypropylene, polyethylene, polybutylene, polyurethanes, Teflon™, cyclic olefins, polyimides etc.), nylon, ceramics, resins, Zeonor, silica or silica-based materials including silicon and modified silicon, carbon, metals, inorganic glasses, optical fiber bundles, and polymers, such as polystyrene, cyclic olefin copolymers (COCs), cyclic olefin polymers (COPs), polypropylene, polyethylene polycarbonate, or combinations thereof.

Among the examples of substrate materials discussed above, polystyrene is a hydrophobic material suitable for binding negatively charged macromolecules because it normally contains few hydrophilic groups. For nucleic acids immobilized on glass slides, by increasing the hydrophobicity of the glass surface the nucleic acid immobilization can be increased. Such an enhancement can permit a relatively more densely packed formation (e.g., provide improved specificity and resolution).

2) Conductive Substrates

In some embodiments, the substrate can be a conductive substrate. Conductive substrates (e.g., electrophoretic compatible arrays) generated as described herein can be used in the spatial detection of analytes.

In some embodiments, a conductive substrate can include glass (e.g., a glass slide) that has been coated with a substance or otherwise modified to confer conductive properties to the glass. In some embodiments, a glass slide can be coated with a conductive coating. In some embodiments, a conductive coating includes tin oxide (TO) or indium tin oxide (ITO). In some embodiments, a conductive coating includes a transparent conductive oxide (TCO).

In some embodiments, a conductive coating includes aluminum doped zinc oxide (AZO). In some embodiments, a conductive coating includes fluorine doped tin oxide (FTO).

In some embodiments, arrays that are spotted or printed with oligonucleotides (e.g., capture probes) can be generated on a conductive substrate (e.g., any of the conductive substrates described herein). For example, the arrays described herein can be compatible with active analyte capture methods (e.g., including without limitation, electrophoretic capture methods). In some embodiments, a conductive substrate is a porous medium. Non-limiting examples of porous media that can be used in methods that employ active analyte capture include a nitrocellulose or nylon membrane. In some embodiments, a porous medium that can be used in methods described herein that employ active analyte capture includes paper. In some embodiments, the oligonucleotides can be printed on a paper substrate. In some embodiments, the printed oligonucleotides can interact with the substrate (e.g., interact with fibers of the paper). In some embodiments, printed oligonucleotides can covalently bind the substrate (e.g., to fibers of the paper). In some embodiments, oligonucleotides in a molecular precursor solution can be printed on a conductive substrate (e.g., paper). In some

embodiments, a molecular precursor solution can polymerize, thereby generating gel pads on the conductive substrate (e.g., paper). In some embodiments, a molecular precursor solution can be polymerized by light (e.g., photocured). In some embodiments, gel beads containing oligonucleotides (e.g., barcoded oligonucleotides such as capture probes) can be printed on a conductive substrate (e.g., paper). In some embodiments, the printed oligonucleotides can be covalently attached into the gel matrix.

3) Coatings

In some embodiments, a surface of a substrate can be coated with a cell-permissive coating to allow adherence of live cells. A“cell-permissive coating” is a coating that allows or helps cells to maintain cell viability (e.g., remain viable) on the substrate. For example, a cell-permissive coating can enhance cell attachment, cell growth, and/or cell differentiation, e.g., a cell-permissive coating can provide nutrients to the live cells. A cell-permissive coating can include a biological material and/or a synthetic material. Non-limiting examples of a cell-permissive coating include coatings that feature one or more extracellular matrix (ECM) components (e.g., proteoglycans and fibrous proteins such as collagen, elastin, fibronectin and laminin), poly-lysine, poly(L)-omithine, and/or a biocompatible silicone (e.g., CYTOSOFT®). For example, a cell-permissive coating that includes one or more extracellular matrix components can include collagen Type I, collagen Type II, collagen Type IV, elastin, fibronectin, laminin, and/or vitronectin. In some embodiments, the cell- permissive coating includes a solubilized basement membrane preparation extracted from the Engelbreth-Holm- Swarm (EHS) mouse sarcoma (e.g., MATRIGEL®). In some

embodiments, the cell-permissive coating includes collagen. A cell-permissive coating can be used to culture adherent cells on a spatially-barcoded array, or to maintain cell viability of a tissue sample or section while in contact with a spatially-barcoded array.

In some embodiments, a substrate is coated with a surface treatment such as poly(L)- lysine. Additionally or alternatively, the substrate can be treated by silanation, e.g., with epoxy-silane, amino-silane, and/or by a treatment with polyacrylamide.

In some embodiments, a substrate is treated in order to minimize or reduce non specific analyte hybridization within or between features. For example, treatment can include coating the substrate with a hydrogel, film, and/or membrane that creates a physical barrier to non-specific hybridization. Any suitable hydrogel can be used. For example, hydrogel matrices prepared according to the methods set forth in U.S. Patent Nos. 6,391,937,

9,512,422, and 9,889,422, and U.S. Patent Application Publication Nos. U.S. 2017/0253918 and U.S. 2018/0052081, can be used. The entire contents of each of the foregoing documents is incorporated herein by reference.

Treatment can include adding a functional group that is reactive or capable of being activated such that it becomes reactive after application of a stimulus (e.g., photoreactive functional groups). Treatment can include treating with polymers having one or more physical properties (e.g., mechanical, electrical, magnetic, and/or thermal) that minimize non specific binding (e.g., that activate a substrate at certain locations to allow analyte hybridization at those locations).

A“removable coating” is a coating that can be removed from the surface of a substrate upon application of a releasing agent. In some embodiments, a removable coating includes a hydrogel as described herein, e.g., a hydrogel including a polypeptide-based material. Non-limiting examples of a hydrogel featuring a polypeptide-based material include a synthetic peptide-based material featuring a combination of spider silk and a trans membrane segment of human muscle L-type calcium channel (e.g., PEPGEL®), an amphiphilic 16 residue peptide containing a repeating arginine-alanine-aspartate-alanine sequence (RAD ARAD ARAD ARAD A) (e.g, PURAMATRIX®), EAK16

(AEAEAKAKAEAEAKAK), KLD12 (KLDLKLDLKLDL), and PGMATRIX™.

In some embodiments, the hydrogel in the removable coating is a stimulus-responsive hydrogel. A stimulus-responsive hydrogel can undergo a gel-to-solution and/or gel-to-solid transition upon application of one or more external triggers (e.g., a releasing agent). See, e.g., Willner, Acc. Chem. Res. 50:657-658, 2017, which is incorporated herein by reference in its entirety. Non-limiting examples of a stimulus-responsive hydrogel include a

thermoresponsive hydrogel, a pH-responsive hydrogel, a light-responsive hydrogel, a redox- responsive hydrogel, an analyte-responsive hydrogel, or a combination thereof. In some embodiments, a stimulus-responsive hydrogel can be a multi-stimuli-responsive hydrogel.

A“releasing agent” or“external trigger” is an agent that allows for the removal of a removable coating from a substrate when the releasing agent is applied to the removable coating. An external trigger or releasing agent can include physical triggers such as thermal, magnetic, ultrasonic, electrochemical, and/or light stimuli as well as chemical triggers such as pH, redox reactions, supramolecular complexes, and/or biocatalytically driven reactions. See e.g, Echeverria, et al. Gels (2018), 4, 54; doi: 10.3390/gels4020054, which is incorporated herein by reference in its entirety. The type of“releasing agent” or“external trigger” can depend on the type of removable coating. For example, a removable coating featuring a redox-responsive hydrogel can be removed upon application of a releasing agent that includes a reducing agent such as dithiothreitol (DTT). As another example, a pH-responsive hydrogel can be removed upon the application of a releasing agent that changes the pH. In some embodiments, the biological sample can be confined to a specific region or area. For example, a biological sample can be affixed to a glass slide and a chamber, gasket, or cage positioned over the biological sample to act as a containment region or frame within which the biological sample is deposited.

SEQ ID NO: 7 GGTGACTCTAGATAACCT

2. Additional Support Device Embodiments

In some embodiments, a support device can be part of a system (e.g., a system 3102, as described in PCT/US2019/065100, the entire contents of which are incorporated herein by reference) for heating a substrate that can further include a plate. The plate can be configured to be received by a heating device (e.g., a thermocycler) and provide heat transfer between the heating device and the support device. The support device (e.g., a substrate holder 3150, as described in PCT/US2019/065100) can hold one or more substrates (such as one or more glass slides), and can removably couple to the plate to facilitate heat transfer from the plate to the one or more substrates. The support device can include a bottom member and a top member. In some embodiments, the substrate device can further include a slide. In some embodiments, the support device can include a gasket that is positioned inside the support device. In some embodiments, the support device can include an engagement mechanism (e.g., screws) for coupling the bottom member and the top member.

In some embodiments, the support device can be a single-piece component (e.g., substrate holder 4400, as described in PCT/US2019/065100) that receives a gasket and a substrate. In some embodiments, the support device can include one or more fasteners (such as a side mounted press latch 4410, as described in PCT/US2019/065100) for snap engagement of a substate. In some embodiments, the support device can further include one or more tabs (e.g., first tab 4412a and second tab 4412b, as described in

PCT/US2019/065100) that are configured to engage the substrate. The support device can include a bottom surface defining a plurality of apertures that are configured to align with a plurality of apertures of a gasket.

In some embodiments, the support device can include a top component and a bottom component that are connected via one or more hinges (e.g., hinge 7360, as described in

PCT/US2019/065100) extending from a side wall of the bottom component. The support device can further include one or more engagement features protruding from a side wall of the top component (e.g., first notch 7358a and second notch 7358b, as described in

PCT/US2019/06510), which are configured to engage one or more tabs protruding from a side wall of the bottom component, thereby enabling closure of the support device.

II. Support Devices

The devices provided herein can be used to ensure that the temperature of a substrate and any samples and/or reagents supported on the substrate surface is controlled uniformly and consistently during a sample preparation and/or analysis protocol. During such protocols, uneven heating can lead to failure of the sample preparation. Further, even when sample heating is relatively uniform, condensation that contacts the sample may impair certain reactions that are part of the protocol, or otherwise affect the chemical reactions that occur. The devices described, in various embodiments, provide for heating of multiple surfaces of a substrate (e.g., in a slide cassette or substrate holder), and can include features that facilitate heat transfer from heating elements to the substrate, and that can reduce or prevent condensation from forming in certain regions of the substrate (e.g., in sample wells or regions on the substrate surface). Additionally, the devices provided herein can provide mitigation of cross-contamination of samples and/or reagents from different locations on the substrate. For example, the described gaskets of the device can provide for discrete biological sample areas and a vapor barrier from one well to the next. Further, the gaskets can impede reagent spillage or flow from one well to the next.

Referring generally to FIGS. 1-5, an embodiment of an example support device can include a substrate and a substrate holder. The substrate holder can include a gasket, a cover, and a base. In some embodiments, the cover and the base are integrally connected (e.g., the substrate holder is a one-part design). In some embodiments, the substrate holder is manufactured using injection molding techniques. Non-limiting materials used to manufacture the support devices of the disclosure include polypropylene homopolymers. In some embodiments, the substrate holder is disposable. In some embodiments, the substrate holder is reusable.

In some embodiments, the substrate holder receives a substrate, such as a slide, for example a glass slide. In some embodiments, the substrate holder includes an attachment mechanism to couple and/or secure the substrate to the substrate holder. The cover can be configured to receive a gasket or can be co-molded with a gasket. The cover can include a plurality of ribs extending from a surface of the cover. Furthermore, the base can be configured to receive a substrate. In some examples, the support device can further include at least one pair of locking tabs where each locking tab includes a moveable tab that is coupled to a first side wall of the cover and a non-moveable tab coupled to a first side wall of the base. In other examples, each locking tab includes a moveable tab that is coupled to a first side wall of the base and a non-moveable tab is coupled to a first side wall of the cover. The moveable tab can be configured to engage with the non-moveable tab to releasably secure the cover to the base. In some examples, the cover and the base are pivotably connected together by at least one hinge. In some embodiments, the hinge can be a living hinge. In some embodiments, the cover and the base are pivotably connected together by two or more hinges. In some embodiments, at least one hinge extends from a second side wall of the cover to a second side wall of the base. For example, when the substrate holder is in a closed position, the cover can be configured to fold onto the base to secure the substrate and gasket between the cover and the base.

Moreover, the support device can include a substrate (e.g., a glass slide) that is configured to receive a sample. In some embodiments, the sample can be a biological sample. In some embodiments, the sample can be any of the biological samples defined elsewhere in the disclosure. The substrate includes a first surface and a second surface. In some examples, the first surface of the substrate is configured to receive a sample. In some embodiments, the substrate includes a sample region. In some examples, the sample region receives one or more samples.

FIG. 1 shows support device 100 in a closed position. Support device 100 includes a substrate holder 101. In particular, FIG. 1 shows the substrate holder 101 having a base 134 and a cover 136. Base 134 and cover 136 have a first pair of side walls 103 and a second pair of side walls 105. Each of the first side walls 103 can be longer than each of the second side walls 105. Thus, base 134 and cover 136 has a substantially rectangular shape. In some embodiments, base 134 and cover 136 can also have a circular, square, triangular, or any other suitable shape. In some embodiments, the first side wall 103 of the cover 136 is generally orthogonal to the second side wall 105 of the cover 136. In some embodiments, the first side wall 103 of the base 134 is generally orthogonal to the second side wall 105 of the base 134. Cover 136 includes a top surface 102 where a plurality of apertures 104 are defined through. In some embodiments, the plurality of apertures 104 can be defined such that it aligns with a plurality of openings of a gasket when the gasket is positioned between the cover 136 and the base 134 in a closed position. In some embodiments, the plurality of apertures 104 can be defined such that it aligns with a sample region of the substrate (e.g., a slide) when the support device is in a closed position. In some embodiments, the plurality of apertures 104 can provide a user with access to the substrate (e.g., a sample region on the substrate) to view a sample on the sample region and/or deliver a solution directly onto the sample on the sample region or onto a surface of the substrate, for example, when the support device is in a closed position.

Substrate holder 101 can include at least one pair of locking tabs 107 that are configured to releasably secure, close, lock, fasten, and/or engage the base 134 with the cover 136. Each locking tab 107 can include a moveable tab 106 coupled to a first side wall 103 of the cover 136 and a non-moveable tab 108 coupled to a first side wall 103 of the base 134. In some embodiments, the moveable tab 106 is configured to engage with the non-moveable tab 108 to releasably secure the cover 136 to the base 134. In alternative examples, moveable tab 106 may be coupled to a second side wall 105 of the cover 136 and a non-moveable tab 108 may be coupled to a second side wall 105 of the base 134. In some embodiments, one or more locking tabs 107 may be coupled to one or both first side walls 103 and/or one or more locking tabs 107 may be coupled to one or both second side walls 105. In some

embodiments, the moveable tabs 106 and the cover 136 are integrally joined. In some embodiments, the non-moveable tabs 108 and the base 134 are integrally joined. In some examples, substrate holder 101 can include multiple locking tabs 107 (e.g., at least 2, 3, 4, or 5 pairs of locking tabs 107). In some embodiments, any type of fastener that allows releasable engagement of the base 134 with the cover 136 can be used, such as, for example, magnetic fasteners, snap-fits, hook-and-loop fasteners, press latches, screws, press fit type connectors (e.g., lever, a clip, or a clamp), or any combination thereof. In some

embodiments, the substrate holder 101 can further include one or more spring-loaded fasteners.

FIG. 2 is an exploded view of the support device 100 of FIG. 1 in an open position.

Support device 100 can include a substrate 210. Cover 236 and base 234 are pivotably connected by a pair of hinges 216 that extend from a second side wall 205 of the cover 236 to a second side wall 205 of the base 234. In some embodiments, the pair of hinges can be a pair of living hinges. In some embodiments, the cover and base are pivotably connected by at least one hinge. In some embodiments, one or more hinges can extend from a second side wall of the cover to a second side wall of the base. In some embodiments, the cover and the base can be pivotably connected by one hinge that has a length spanning about 50% or more of the length of the side from which it extends from. In some embodiments, the cover and the base are pivotably connected by several hinges. For example, when the substrate holder 201 is in a closed position, the cover 236 is configured to fold onto the base 234 in the direction of arrow 212 to secure the substrate 210 and a gasket 224 between the cover 236 and the base 234. FIG. 2 shows the substrate holder 201 in an open position, having the cover 236 in an extended, unfolded position away from the base 234. In some embodiments, the substrate holder 201 is in an open position when cover 236 is at about 180° with respect to the base 234, as shown in FIG. 2. In some embodiments, the substrate holder 201 is in an open position when cover 236 is at an angle ranging from about 10° to about 170° with respect to the base 234.

Cover 236 has a bottom surface 232 from which a plurality of ribs 218 can extend perpendicularly from. In some embodiments, the cover 236 is configured to receive gasket 224. In some embodiments, gasket 224 is reversible. For example, gasket 224 can be reversibly placed on cover 236 (i.e., there is no specific directionality to which gasket surface that defines the plurality of gasket openings 238, contacts the surface of cover 236). In some embodiments, gasket 224 can withstand at least about 10% compression set. In some embodiments, gasket 224 can withstand about 15% or more compression set. In some embodiments, gasket 224 can withstand about 1%, 2%, 3%, 4%, 5%, 6%, 7%, 8%, 9%, 10%, 15%, 20%, 40%, 60%, 70% or more compression set. As used herein, compression set is expressed as the percentage of the original specimen thickness after being exposed to a constant compressive force. In some embodiments, gasket 224 is co-molded with a portion of the substrate holder, for example, cover 236. In some embodiments, gasket 224 can withstand a compression force that results in a height change of about 0.5 millimeters (mm). In some embodiments, gasket 224 can withstand a compression force that results in a height change of about 0.1 mm, 0.2 mm, 0.3 mm, 0.4 mm, 0.5 mm, 0.6 mm, 0.7 mm, 0.8 mm, 0.9 mm, 1 mm or more. In some embodiments, gasket 224 is constructed out of a thermoplastic polymer, such as a thermoplastic elastomer. In some embodiments, gasket 224 removably adheres to the bottom surface 232 of the cover 236.

Gasket 224 can include a plurality of openings 238. In some embodiments, the plurality of openings 238 can align with the plurality of apertures 104 defined by the surface of the cover 236. For example, in some embodiments, the plurality of openings 238 is positioned so that when the substrate 210 rests on top of the substrate holder 201, and the substrate holder 201 is in a closed position, the plurality of apertures 104 is aligned with the plurality of openings 238. In some embodiments, gasket 224 applies pressure on substrate

210 when substrate holder 201 is in a closed position. The plurality of ribs 218 can be configured to support substrate 210 and gasket 224. In some embodiments, the gasket is positionally aligned on the surface of the cover by the plurality of ribs. In some

embodiments, the gasket 224 is positioned so that when the substrate 210 rests on top of the substrate holder 201, and the substrate holder 201 is in the closed position, a vapor-tight seal is formed between the gasket 224 and the substrate 210. In some embodiments, an air-tight seal is formed between the gasket 224 and the substrate 210. In some embodiments, the gasket 224 is configured to prevent fluid transport between the plurality of openings 238 when the cover 236 is in the closed position.

In the example shown in FIG. 2, substrate holder 201 includes a plurality of ribs extending perpendicularly or protruding outwardly from bottom surface 232. Gasket 224 does not come in contact (i.e., does not abut) the plurality of ribs 218. In some embodiments, the gasket is a separate component that is not co-molded with the cover. In such

embodiments, one or more ribs can be in proximity to or abut one or more gasket walls to help retain the gasket in a proper position. In some embodiments, when the gasket is not co molded with the cover, one or more ribs can be in proximity to or abut 1, 2, 3 or 4 of the gasket walls. In some embodiments, the plurality of ribs 218 frame an area of the bottom surface 232 (e.g., an area that is sufficiently sized and configured to receive the gasket 224). The plurality of ribs 218 can be disposed parallel to the second side walls 205.

The plurality of ribs 218 has a width w. In some embodiments, the plurality of ribs 218 can have an equal width w, as shown in FIG. 2. In some embodiments, the widths of the plurality of ribs 218 can vary. One of ribs 218 extends substantially perpendicular from bottom surface 232 near a first end 211a of substrate holder 201. The remaining ribs 218 extend perpendicular from bottom surface 232 near a second end 211b of substrate holder 201. In some embodiments, the substrate holder 201 may include multiple ribs (e.g., 2, 3, 4,

5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10 or more ribs). In some embodiments, the substrate holder 201 can include one or more ribs that extend perpendicular to the plurality of ribs 218.

The plurality of ribs 218 has a height h. In some embodiments, the plurality of ribs

218 can have an equal height h, as shown in FIG. 2. In some embodiments, a height h can be provided such that the top edge of the plurality of ribs 218 comes in contact with substrate

210 when the support device is in a closed position. In some embodiments, the plurality of ribs 218 secures substrate 210 by coming in contact with a surface of substrate 210 when the support device is in a closed position. In some embodiments, the first surface 228 of the substrate 210 engages with at least one of the plurality of ribs 218 when the substrate holder

201 is in the closed position. In some embodiments, the first surface 228 of the substrate 210 includes a sample region. In some embodiments, the sample region is an area of the substrate that is configured to receive one or more samples. In some embodiments, substrate 210 includes one or more sample regions.

In some embodiments, the base 234 is configured to receive substrate 210. In some examples, the second surface of the substrate 210 can rest on top of the base 234 of the substrate holder 201. For example, base 234 can include a lip 222 configured to retain the substrate 201 within the base 234. For example, substrate 210 can rest on lip 222 and be held in place. In some embodiments, lip 222 extends around the perimeter of the base 234. In some embodiments, the substrate can be secured to the base of the substrate holder. In an example, the substrate 210 can be placed in the base 234 in the direction of arrow 214. The second surface of substrate 210 can be placed such that it comes in contact with lip 222 and the first surface 228 of substrate 210 comes in contact with the plurality of ribs 218 and gasket 224 when the support device is in a closed position. In some embodiments, substrate 210 can be loaded into base 234 without using a tool. Base 234 can include an opening 220 sufficiently sized to expose one or more portions of the substrate 210. In some embodiments, opening 220 is sized such that the majority of second surface of substrate 210 is exposed and not covered. In some embodiments, opening 220 can enable the second surface of substrate 210 to come in contact with a surface of a heating device (e.g., a plate 3110, as described in PCT/US2019/065100, the entire contents of which are incorporated herein by reference. In some embodiments, the first surface 228 of substrate 210 includes a sample region. In some embodiments, the base 234 includes opening 220 that exposes at least a portion of the second surface of the substrate 210 when the substrate 210 is placed in the base 234.

FIGS. 3A and 3B are bottom and top views, respectively, of the support device in a closed position. As shown in FIG. 3A, a second surface 330 of substrate 310 is exposed through the opening of the substrate holder. FIG. 3B shows the plurality of apertures 304 defined by the top surface 302 of cover 336 aligning with the plurality of openings 338 of the gasket 324 when the support device is in the closed position.

The base includes non-moveable tabs 308. The cover includes moveable tabs 306 that are configured to engage the non-moveable tabs 308, respectively. In some embodiments, the moveable tabs are symmetric. In some embodiments, the substrate holder 201 includes one or two pairs of locking tabs, each locking tab including a non-moveable tab and a moveable tab.

FIGS. 3C and 3D are side views of the support device in a closed position. FIG. 3C shows a view of the support device along a first side wall 303 where the non-moveable tabs 308 can be engaged with the moveable tabs 306. FIG. 3D shows a view of the support device along a second side wall 305 where the pair of hinges 316 are pivotably connecting the cover 336 to the base 334.

FIG. 4A is a top view of the support device in an open position showing the substrate 410 resting on top of the base 434. In some embodiments, one or more sample regions on substrate 410 can fall within the enclosed area defined by each one of the plurality of openings 438 of gasket 424. In some embodiments, substrate 410 may include samples (e.g., biological material samples) on a portion of its surface that align with one or more of the plurality of apertures 438. In some embodiments, the samples (e.g., biological material samples) may be identified in the same manner as the corresponding aperture of the plurality of apertures 438.

FIG. 4B shows a side view of the support device in an open position. In some embodiments, moveable tabs 406 can have a C-shape structure. In some embodiments, moveable tabs 406 are constructed from a flexible material that enables them to be flexed away from the body of the substrate holder in order to engage the non-moveable tabs 408. In some embodiments, non-moveable tabs 408 are unable to be flexed. In some embodiments, non-moveable tabs 408 are rigid and do not flex when engaging moveable tabs 406. In some embodiments, the height h of the plurality of ribs 418 is about the same height h’ of gasket 424. FIG. 4C is a side view of the support device in an open position as seen along the second side wall 405.

In some embodiments, a first side wall 403 can measure about 3 inches. In some embodiments, a second side wall 405 can measure about 1 inch. In some embodiments, substrate 410 can measure about 75 millimeters (mm) by 25 mm. In some embodiments, substrate 410 can measure about 75 millimeters (mm) by 50 mm. In some embodiments, substrate 410 can measure about 48 millimeters (mm) by 28 mm. In some embodiments, substrate 410 can measure about 46 millimeters (mm) by 27 mm. In some embodiments, substrate 410 is a glass slide.

FIGS. 5A and 5B are partial cut-out side views of the support device 500. FIG. 5A shows the gasket 524 in an uncompressed state prior to subjecting the support device 500 to a closed position. FIG. 5B shows gasket 524 in a compressed state and the support device 500 in a closed position. Ribs 518 contact the susbstrate 510 to set the maxiumum compression of the gasket 524. In some embodiments, the maximum compression of the gasket is about 10%. In an aspect, the present disclosure includes a method of incubating a sample disposed on a sample region of any of the substrates disclosed herein. In some embodiments, the method includes mounting the substrate on any of the support devices disclosed herein. The method further includes positioning the substrate and support device on a heating apparatus (e.g., a laboratory heat plate). The method further includes activating the heating apparatus to transfer heat to the sample (e.g., via the second surface of the substrate that is exposed via the opening of the substrate holder). In some embodiments, when the substrate holder is coupled to the support device, at least 60% of a sample region is overlaid by the support device. In some embodiments, at least 50%, 40%, 30%, 20%, 10% or less of a sample region of a substrate is overlaid by the support device.

OTHER EMBODIMENTS

It is to be understood that while the invention has been described in conjunction with the detailed description thereof, the foregoing description is intended to illustrate and not limit the scope of the invention, which is defined by the scope of the appended claims.

Disclosed are systems, apparatuses (e.g., devices), and methods that can be used for, can be used in conjunction with, can be used in preparation for, or are products of the disclosed methods. These and other systems, apparatuses, and methods are disclosed herein, and it is understood that combinations, subsets, interactions, groups, etc. of these systems, apparatuses, and methods are disclosed. That is, while specific reference to each various individual and collective combinations and permutations of these systems, apparatuses and methods may not be explicitly disclosed, each is specifically contemplated and described herein. For example, if a particular system, apparatus, or a particular method is disclosed and discussed and a number of systems, apparatuses, or methods are discussed, each and every combination and permutation of the systems, apparatuses, and the methods are specifically contemplated unless specifically indicated to the contrary. Likewise, any subset or combination of these is also specifically contemplated and disclosed.

Other aspects, advantages, and modifications are within the scope of the following claims.