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    May 16, 2018

    How you can help shape the future of lab productivity

    At Synthace we are researching the current status quo of modern academic and industrial biology

    You look at your goals for the next few weeks… one of your deliverables you need to prepare a library of 20 different protein constructs, then assay them to check expression yields, activity and structural integrity.

    Great, you think!

    This should be a pretty standard set of experiments that should give some exciting results and could influence the direction of the whole project.

    Breaking down this goal into its constituent parts you realize you need to:

    1. Design and order primers for site-directed mutagenesis
    2. Prepare PCR reactions, Run PCR reactions, and Plate Cells
    3. Get sequencing data
    4. Transform into an expression strain.
    5. Conduct expression in expression strain
    6. Small-scale parallel purifications
    7. Check purity, check yield and freeze into a stock.
    8. Prepare 96-well plates for CD assays (if you have one of these you are luckier than most of us) and prepare the 96-well activity assay.
    9. Run the assays, analyze the data, and then write up results.

    Your heart sinks as the amount of work entailed comes into view.

    You realize to execute this plan you’re going to have to – prepare PCR plates, run multiple concentration assays, prepare multiple tryptic digests, prepare the plates for CD assay, check the concentrations again and run the activity assays. All of this requiring large amounts of error-prone and laborious pipetting and detailed and time-consuming robot coding. You also have a conference talk to write, an abstract to submit and several scientific project review meetings to attend…suddenly all those tedious pipetting steps are now getting in the way of other priorities……

    Every area of modern biology has this element of laborious liquid handling at its core, from bio-processing through to bio-marker discovery, in both academia and industry. Other industries like automobile manufacturing automated these tasks out, yet in modern biology, we express apathy to the tedium of our science.

    At Synthace, we make scientists' lives easier. We think life is too short to be spent pipetting, or hard coding robots for every detailed step and that as scientists we should be spending more time focussing on what we should be doing: coming up with new ideas, testing and developing them.

    We are conducting research on what experiments are causing the most pain across the life-sciences industry and what equipment we are all using. This collated data will then inform a free report that we hope can help drive forward the adoption of best practices and technologies across the industry.

    To participate in our research, take the survey here.

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