Vector Ordering for Penn Investigators

As a Penn researcher, we can offer many inventory vectors that we have available without the need to place a custom vector request. The list of inventory vectors is searchable through our partnership with Addgene. To see if we have vectors in stock, please send us an email. Please reference the below information to place a custom vector request.

Establish a Vector Core Account

Please fill out the Investigator Profile Form and submit it to us so we can get an account set up.

Please Note: The account should be established under the name of the principal investigator (PI) of the lab that will be receiving materials. Once the account has been created, an email providing access to the online ordering system will be sent. Any scientist working within that lab can be added to the account and receive their own user ID to log in to place orders.

Preparing to Submit a Request

Our online request system asks for information to make sure we have your vector request correctly identified. The system will ask about the vector you want to be made as well as any plasmids that are coming to us to be used in production. 

Please note: If the transgene is one that we have used for your previous order, or if the transgene was offered by us as an inventory vector, you do not need to upload documents and can reference your previous prep/inventory prep in your current request. Our inventory transgenes can be found on Addgene

For any ready-to-use, endotoxin-free transgene plasmid being sent to us for vector production, we ask for the following documentation be uploaded when the request is being entered:

  1. The plasmid map with labeled transgene elements.
  2. The plasmid sequence.
  3. A labeled gel picture of the DNA coming to us showing at least the following:
    1. A ladder marked to indicate sizes of at least the important fragment sizes.
    2. Uncut plasmid lane (to show that more than 80% of the DNA is in supercoil form).
    3. Single-cut plasmid lane (recommended to interpret high-running uncut plasmid).
    4. Xma1- or Sma1-digested plasmid lane (to show intactness of the Inverted Terminal Repeats).

The amount of ready-to-use, endotoxin-free plasmid we need for each vector production scale can be found on our Vector Services and Associated Costs page. 

Please note: If you are requesting DNA services from us (cloning and/or amplification), you can skip submission of #3 and provide as much as you can in terms of #1 and #2.

Submit an Order Request Through the Online System

Our ordering system allows you to enter all the important information for your vector request and provide comments if needed (e.g., requesting additional services). If you are interested in an AAV capsid that we do not provide on our list, we can still make the vector if you provide the capsid plasmid. In the request form, you will be able to add DNA services if you do not have enough endotoxin-free, ready-to-use plasmid to send for AAV vector production. Once we receive a request for services, both the requestor and principal investigator will receive a quote for the services requested. 

Please note: For your first entry into the ordering system, or if you forget your username/password, simply click the “Retrieve Account Details” button to send an email link to set up a username and password.

Submit Material to the Penn Vector Core

Send endotoxin-free plasmid to:

Penn Vector Core
Attention: Dr. Kenton Woodard
125 S. 31st Street, Suite 2000
Philadelphia, PA 19104

Please note: If the transgene cassette is one that we offered as an inventory vector, we can use our stock of plasmid for vector production.

Send forms to:

Penn Vector Core
Attention: Dr. Kenton Woodard
125 S. 31st Street, Suite 2000
Philadelphia, PA 19104

Pickup and Transport

The requestor and principal investigator will receive an email with the vector is ready for pickup. The email will contain information to schedule pickup and any outstanding information that is needed. The TRL Shuttle van service has been available since January 2005 for transport between TRL and the rest of the Penn campus. To schedule a ride or to arrange for immediate pick-up, simply call the Perelman School of Medicine’s Security Operations Center at 215-898-0669. You may schedule your return trip with the driver or call for a ride when you are ready to leave TRL. Penn ID is required. You will need approval from Environmental Health and Radiation Safety (EHRS) to transport biological materials (including animal tissues, animal blood, and vectors) on the TRL Shuttle. Please visit the Penn EHRS website for shuttle transportation guidelines as well as the form to obtain approval for your lab.

Storage and Handling

All vectors should be transported on dry ice and should be stored at -80°C upon receipt. AAV vectors can be re-frozen after the first use, but we recommend keeping the number of freeze-thaw cycles to a minimum by dividing the vectors into smaller undiluted aliquots if needed. AAV vectors are in PBS containing 0.001% Pluronic F68; we recommend any further dilution in PBS under sterile conditions at the time of use.