Nova Biologicals implements an integrated water, environmental and pharma LIMS/DMS Paul Pearce, Ph.D., Colin Thurston Nova Biologicals is a full-service, National Environmental Laboratory Accreditation Conference (NELAC)-accredited laboratory in Texas, providing testing and consulting services to the water, medical device, pharmaceutical, nutraceutical and food industries globally. Water testing makes up 53 percent of Nova’s total revenue, and the laboratory specializes in microbiological, chemical and toxicological testing of drinking water and wastewater samples. A team of dedicated scientists provides comprehensive diagnostic testing of specimens for the presence of infectious disease organisms and water testing under the Federal Safe Drinking Water Act.
Encouraging computerized medical device invention Sandy Weinberg, Ph.D., Ronald Fuqua, Ph.D. A patient swallows a computerized capsule, providing his physician with a series of images of the gastrointestinal tract. Another patient accesses the computer control on her wheelchair, which raises her to a standing position and follows a carefully designed exercise program to keep her legs from atrophying. A computerized “lab on a chip” provides toxicologists with a complete analysis series from a single sample. These and other computerized medical devices have two important characteristics in common: they are all innovations developed by entrepreneurs in a single country, and they represent the success stories of that country’s policies for supporting and encouraging innovation.
An extremely flexible tool for acquiring, processing and displaying data John R. Joyce, Ph.D. Origin 8.5.1 is a full-featured data analysis and graphing package that has been the target of previous reviews in Scientific Computing. Here, we will take a more in-depth look at the many automation features to be found in both Origin and OriginPro. These include several different ways of automating its internal processes, ways for it to control external processes and ways for external processes to control it. In the following text, we will examine these capabilities and some of the ways in which they can be used, as well as constructing examples illustrating some of the approaches to go about doing it.
Interaction of two computing modeling fields provides critical disease mitigation tools Sandy Weinberg, Ph.D. and Ronald Fuqua, Ph.D. While neither may qualify as “the world’s oldest profession,” at least in risqué jokes, both professional actuaries and epidemiologists have long histories, with an interesting modern intersection. The Old Testament describes a variety of diseases in great detail: arguably Moses was, in addition to his other skills, an effective epidemiologist. And, as for actuaries, didn’t Noah count off the animals in his ark two-by-two? However, it is in the modern analysis of health trends that these two modern professions emerge to provide a scientific basis for research and application.
Systems Integration Bennett Lass Ph.D., PMP Web Exclusive This is the fifth article in a series on best practices in Electronic Lab Notebook (ELN) implementation. This article discusses the fourth core area: System Integration.
Be Careful What You Wish For Steve Conway, IDC Research VP, HPC In 1995, the global market for high performance computing (HPC) servers, a.k.a. supercomputers, was worth about $2 billion. By 2010, that figure nearly quintupled to $9.5 billion, thanks to the rise of HPC clusters based on commercial, off-the-shelf (COTS) technologies.
Everyone’s a winner in the race for a common application language that can support both x86 and massively parallel hardware Rob Farber Commercial and research projects must now have parallel applications to compete for customer and research dollars. This translates into pressure on software development efforts that have to control costs while supporting a range of rapidly evolving parallel hardware platforms. What is needed is a common programming language that developers can use to create parallel applications with a single source tree that can run on current and future parallel hardware.
While it is common for users in various laboratories and industries to feel that their processes are unique, in many ways, they all have common needs. Similarly, in many respects, all laboratory information management systems (LIMS) are alike, or at least they should be. All must perform basic functions, such as track the users entering data, track the samples arriving at the laboratory and their processing through it...
Before you decide to rock the boat, several key decision-making steps can help to ensure a smooth and successful upgrade Peter J. Boogaard The upside of upgrading the IT infrastructure will give many organizations the ability to eliminate barriers to enable cross-functional collaboration between research, development, quality assurance and manufacturing. Standardizing workflows and operating procedures and applying best industry practices throughout operations also are key drivers. Quick advantage occurs when the implementation is fast and when it results in strategic value. This article will highlight key decision-making steps to be considered when upgrading your software.
For those new to this software, perhaps a little background is in order. Maple is mathematical software that is constantly being improved as to breadth of the calculation routines, optimality of the algorithms, speed of computation, and ease-of-use. The last is one of the most useful features, as the new user can quickly come up to speed by testing the menu items, going through the tutorials and reading the pertinent sections of the manuals
Using what you have in a smarter way Dan Joe Barry, Napatech Web Exclusive If you like theory, then you’ll be interested to know that many are predicting that data center traffic is set to sharply increase. As cloud computing centralizes, more computing resources and more devices, such as mobile phones, tablets and TVs, are being used to exchange data.
Avoiding the consequences of cutting corners Christopher Bauer, Ph.D. Web Exclusive Times are tough in business right now, certainly including laboratory informatics, and any sane business person is trying to cut corners in any way possible. Scaling back on your attention to ethics, however, can have catastrophic consequences. Between the possible fines, legal fees and reputational damage to you and your company, you could lose anything from thousands to millions of dollars as well as your career or business. No matter how tough the times are, that kind of risk is simply not worth taking. Unfortunately, though, tough times can easily make it seem worth trying to cut ethical corners if it looks like there might be some financial gain from it.
Solving the problems of “big” data growth Will McGrath Web Exclusive The explosion of data growth created by next-gen instruments has caused tremendous challenges in handling and storing those files. While growth in structured and semi-structured data — like e-mail and databases — continues to grow, it is really unstructured “big” data growth that is causing the biggest problems. This is true in verticals like oil and gas with upstream seismic and interpretation applications or in life sciences with a number of newer instruments being introduced for electron microscopy, high content screening / high throughput screening and flow cytometry — or especially, next generation sequencing (NGS).
Intelligent use remains the best way to exploit speed and maintain the highest possible ROI Rob Farber Solid-state storage is revolutionizing computer storage. Unlike the currently ubiquitous rotating media disk drives, solid-state disk drives have no moving parts to waste power or delay data accesses. The fastest PCIe-based solid-state devices can perform over a million random disk accesses per second, while the fastest rotating media disk drives can deliver around 200 random disk accesses per second
How the University of Washington scaled up with a LIMS Mike Sanders Web Exclusive When the University of Washington (UW) received a $23 million portion of a $64 million grant for the Large-Scale Exome Sequencing Project from the National Heart Lung and Blood Institute (NHLBI), investigators knew the clock was ticking. Grants generally have a limited shelf-life and this was no exception. The UW’s Northwest Genomics Center would need to sequence a total of 4,000 exomes over two years — an ambitious goal in a tight timeframe. Moreover, DNA would come from large cohort studies such as the Framingham Heart Study and the Women’s Health Initiative.