The amount of research data being generated is currently increasing at an annual rate of 30 percent. As scientific data output grows even further, effective data organization is not only going to become more important, but also more difficult.
One study has found that 80 percent of scientific data is lost within two decades and the odds of sourcing datasets decline by 17 percent each year. If data continues to be poorly managed, science will ultimately suffer, with experiments being hard to replicate, findings called into question, papers retracted and careers impacted.
Read more: http://www.laboratoryequipment.com/articles/2014/04/love-or-lose-your-data
Best Practices for Surplus Lab Equipment
Managing surplus assets is a vital part of business operations that, when executed correctly, can provide cost savings, create new revenue and protect the brand.
With downsizing, mergers and acquisitions and plant closures becoming a mainstay in the pharmaceutical and biotech industry, organizations face millions of dollars in real estate, laboratory equipment and research devices that need to be redeployed, sold or trashed. Given budget restrictions and the importance of maximizing recovery while being privy to environmental regulations, organizations can no longer afford to simply allow assets to lie idle or dispose of them without any thought to the process.
Read more: www.laboratoryequipment.com/articles/2014/04/best-practices-surplus-lab-equipment
Hands-on Program Helps Students, Algae Grow
Extensive lab facilities and a real-world learning approach at a Texas community college has put students and their algae research on a path to success.
Biotechnology student Timothy Hall squinted at a flask full of algae, then carefully placed a few drops into a lab instrument using a pipette. In a few seconds, hundreds of green algal cells appeared on screen. He clicked on several of the digital images, reviewed their measurements and other data and analyzed it for trends or patterns. Hall goes through this process almost daily, monitoring the growth of algal cells and their production of lipids as part of primary research he’s conducting in hopes of someday leading a viable commercial enterprise selling algae as feedstock for biofuel production and other applications. But Hall hasn’t looked for any venture funding. His work on moving America toward energy independence is part of his associate degree program in biotechnology at Lone Star Community College’s Montgomery campus in Conroe, Texas.
Read more: http://www.laboratoryequipment.com/articles/2014/04/hands-program-helps-students-algae-grow
Visualization Technology Brings a New Dimension
Technology and education have always enjoyed a mutually beneficial relationship, with each field often making strong contributions to the advancement of the other. Their latest collaboration is in the area of immersive visualization. Cutting-edge visual technologies are showing educators and researchers the world “in a whole new light,” helping them to aggregate and manipulate their data more efficiently and find their results faster than ever before.
Read more: http://www.laboratoryequipment.com/articles/2014/04/visualization-technology-brings-new-dimension
Promise or Curse?
Animal testing—just those two words are likely to stir the pot for vocal activists who are against all types of testing on animals for any reason; and those less vocal supporters of animal testing who cite the advances in human suffering and longevity animal testing has brought in the past century. Activists cite technological advances as possible alternatives to animal testing, like the announcement at the recent American Chemical Society national meeting by Empiriko’s Mukund Chorghade of their in vitro chemosynthetic livers (Biomimiks) that could reduce the animal-based toxicity testing on new drugs before taking them into clinical trials. The company has tested their synthetic livers, which act similarly to a group of enzymes known as cytochrome P450, on about 50 pharmaceutical compounds with comparable results to those obtained in live animal testing. They need testing results from 100 different compounds before they’re allowed to submit it to the FDA for approval, who would then go through their own analysis. This announcement resulted in a plethora of media announcements citing a possible end to animal testing for drug discovery.
Read more: http://www.laboratoryequipment.com/blogs/2014/04/promise-or-curse
Pure Lab Water: The Essential Lab Component
Increasing analytical instrumentation capabilities are expected to drive the demand for higher performance, easier-to-use and more flexible lab water systems.
"Ultrapure lab water is essential to research laboratory applications,” says Wayne Darsa, Director of Business Development at ELGA LabWater, Woodridge, Ill. “Often, however, it’s taken for granted even though it makes up the vast majority of reagents. In a worst case scenario, months of lab work can be called into question if inconsistencies in the ultrapure lab water source are identified in its delivery, jeopardizing published data.”
Read more: http://www.laboratoryequipment.com/articles/2014/03/pure-lab-water-essential-lab-component
Changes in Instrumentation Change the Future
Our annual instrumentation outlook reveals that traditional technological evolution is continuing and economics is a key driver for laboratory research.
This issue of Laboratory Equipment traditionally examines the science, technology and business of new and leading edge analytical instrumentation introduced and exhibited at the Pittsburgh Conference on Analytical Chemistry and Applied Spectroscopy, or Pittcon. This year, Pittcon celebrates its 64th annual exposition and conference in Chicago’s McCormick Place from March 2 to 6, 2014. Product exhibits are located primarily in the nearly 1 million square feet of McCormick Place’s South Hall.
Read more: http://www.laboratoryequipment.com/articles/2014/02/changes-instrumentation-change-future
The Right Supply for the Right Sample
Considering all options for liquid nitrogen supply systems, including size and safety, is critical to further the growth of cryogenic applications.
The growth of storing and preserving biological materials in cryogenic liquid nitrogen freezers has resulted in many options and challenges in how to effectively supply these systems with the cryogenic liquid they require. Evaluating options, sizing and safety considerations is critical to determining the path a university laboratory or research facility should choose for implementation.
In new construction of facilities where dedicated freezer storage areas can be designed into the building plan, a large low-pressure bulk liquid nitrogen supply connected to a vacuum-jacketed pipeline is typically the best option. This type of installation allows for the most cost-efficient delivery of nitrogen by the supplier and potentially the lowest evaporation loss of cryogen to the freezers because of the low-heat transfer properties of vacuum-insulated piping systems.
Read more: http://www.laboratoryequipment.com/articles/2014/02/right-supply-right-sample
Faster, Better Sample Prep for Foodstuffs
Centrifugal evaporation has proven itself as a fast, safe and efficient sample preparation method in the analysis of foodstuffs for prohibited antibiotics.
Nitrofuran antibiotics were banned from use in the European Union (EU) in 1995 because of concerns that their residues were carcinogenic. In 2002/2003, the EU introduced a stringent testing regimen that calls for the use of highly sensitive methods to test food stuffs, principally meat, fish and shellfish, for the presence of this class of antibiotics. The Minimum Required Performance Limit (MRPL) laid down by the EU directive is 1 µg per kg for edible tissues, and is enforced on all products whether produced locally or imported into the EU. Many papers detail methods and identify metabolites and derivatives of the drugs concerned. The analytical method calls for good upstream sample preparation to eliminate the effects of the matrix, and can be manual and time consuming, particularly where evaporation is concerned. This article describes operational benefits, including workflow improvements, gained by the official food control authority of the canton of Zurich—Kantonales Labor Zurich (KLZH) —during improvement of an upstream sample preparation methodology based on Genevac’s EZ-2 Envi evaporator.
Read more: http://www.laboratoryequipment.com/articles/2014/01/faster-better-sample-prep-foodstuffs
Flexibility, Software and Ease-of-Use Drive Next-Gen Lab Automation
Making lab automation systems usable to non-experts is becoming a driver for equipment suppliers.
In today’s tight economic climate, the cost of operating a modern research lab is often considered the primary challenge for research managers and directors. One could extrapolate from that posit that, when considering the application of automation systems, the resulting reduction of costs from automation implementation would be the driving factor. But the substitution of machine systems for high-cost human operations is not the primary reason for implementing lab automation. Indeed, it’s not even the second reason, according to a recent reader survey by the editors of Laboratory Equipment.
Read more: http://www.laboratoryequipment.com/articles/2014/01/flexibility-software-and-ease-use-drive-next-gen-lab-automation