Flow Cytometry Facility Personnel

Aja Rieger

Aja Rieger
Manager, Flow Cytometry Facility

Dr. Aja Rieger is the manager of the Flow Cytometry Facility. She obtained her BSc in Immunology and Infection (University of Alberta), MSc in Microbiology and Immunology (McGill University), and PhD in Physiology, Cell, and Developmental Biology (University of Alberta). Her PhD research focused on mechanisms of inflammatory control by phagocytes. During her PhD, she also developed multiple assays and protocols to study inflammation in non-classical animal models, primarily using imaging flow cytometry. Following her PhD, Aja pursued post-doctoral studies at University of California - Berkeley. She then joined the Flow Cytometry Facility in 2015, were she continues to develop flow cytometry assays with researchers on campus. Aja is also an 'International Society for the Advancement of Cytometry Shared Resource Lab Emerging Leader (2017-2021), the highest international award for Flow Cytometry Core Facility managers.

Services in the Flow Cytometry Facility have existed on campus since 1981. The Flow Cytometry Facility offers both fee-for-service sample analysis and sorting, as well as full training services for both the analyzers and sorters. The facility also offers a comprehensive educational program. The Flow Core currently offers instruments capable of analyzing both BSL1 and BSL2 samples, with cytometers configured for analysis of 40+ parameters.


Lai Xu
Technologist, Flow Cytometry Facility

Lai Xu is a talented technologist with a passion for flow cytometry and a strong background in Immunology. She obtained her BSc in Biochemistry and Microbiology from the University of Sheffield, UK, and went on to earn her MSc in Immunology and Immunogenetics from the University of Manchester, UK.
Since 2015, Lai has been working in research labs at the University of Alberta, where she has utilized her flow cytometry expertise to support a wide range of research projects. In 2022, Lai joined the Flow Cytometry Core Facility, where she uses her technical skills to help researchers to design, execute, and analyze experiments, and to provide training and support to other researchers. With over a decade of experience in flow cytometry, Lai has developed a deep understanding of this powerful technology and has become a valuable asset to the facility.
Lai's dedication to her work and her passion for science are evident in her commitment to helping researchers achieve their goals. With her strong knowledge and experience in flow cytometry, Lai is well-positioned to make valuable contributions to the field and help advance scientific research.


Rikus Niemand
Technologist, Flow Cytometry Facility

Rikus Niemand is a technologist at the Flow Cytometry Core Facility as well as the High Content Analysis Core. He attended the University of Alberta where he received his BSc in Biological Sciences specializing in Immunology and Infection. His studies sparked an interest in how immune cells regulate immunoregulatory responses. This led to him joining the Stafford lab at the University of Alberta, where he completed his MSc investigating how immunoreceptor models modulate phagocytosis utilizing flow cytometry assays. Rikus began managing and maintaining the same machines he became familiar with during his masters, when he joined the Flow Cytometry Core in the beginning of 2023.