A method for the isolation and sorting of biological materials has been developed. Biological material includes chromosomes, segments of chromosomes, cell organelles, or other minute cellular components. The biological material is separated from the cellular milieu, if necessary, and anchored to a support. Example of a support are glass coverslips, glass or polymer beads. The anchoring is by means of a reversible cross-linking system. The supported biological material is then labelled with compositions capable of binding to said material, and with magnetic particles. Examples of the binding material include nucleic acid probes and antibodies. An example of the antibodies would be those directed to histones. Other labels, for example, fluoresceinbiotin-avidin may be used. The material may be released from the support and sorted by a magnetic force. This method is an alternative to flow cytometry and presents numerous advantages in terms of time, resolution, purity, and preservation of the structure of the biological material during isolation and separation.