Skills to Master
In our Fifth Annual Salary & Employee Satisfaction Survey, the majority of you told us again that you were
happy in your current work situations and had no plans to change careers. However, 13 percent fewer of
you than in 2010 answered in the affir
Top 10 Management Skills You Need
To progress in their careers, lab managers, particularly those in
their first management assignment, need to develop new skills.
Often they had little opportunity to do this while working full
time at the laboratory bench. Yet these skills are cri
The Fifth Annual Salary & Employee Satisfaction Survey
What has been true over the past four years of conducting
this survey remains true: Those working in the scientific
research field like what they do and have no plans to change
careers. Although the number was down 2% from last year,
those who sa
Leadership and Staffing
The Psychobarbarian Manager
There are managers who have learned to use psychological techniques to confuse, contort, and control members of their staff. You
may never encounter one of these characters, if you are lucky. However, it’s amazing how many people immediately...
Science Matters: The Sciences Require "Soft Skills" Too
We all know that scientists who pursue advanced degrees like a Ph.D. are smart. They are driven. And they are no doubt passionate about their work. But can they cut it in the real world?
Recent national media reports that debate the value of adva
Ask the Expert: Overcoming the Challenges of Sample Preparation
Q: What does sample prep typically involve, and what are the common challenges encountered?
A: Sample prep is problematic on many levels. Typically there is always the need to manipulate the sample in some way prior to the analysis. Usually there
Making ChIP-Sequencing User-Friendly
Chromatin states can influence transcription directly by altering the packaging of DNA to allow or prevent access to DNA-binding proteins, or they can modify the nucleosome surface to enhance or impede recruitment of effector protein complexes. Genom
Moving Molecular Diagnostics from Bench to Clinic
The function of molecular diagnostics is to analyze the composition of a patient’s genetic makeup in order to reveal any potential predispositions of that individual to specific diseases. Identifying these biomarkers can allow treatment options
For decades, labs have struggled to find
clear solutions to better engage and retain
their best employees. At some point,
doesn’t it make sense to say, “Why don’t
we just ask them?”
Well, we do ask them. We ask them
through engagement surveys,
Lab Design and Furnishings
Sustainability Meets Flexibility
What does “high-quality” mean in terms of laboratory
design? The lab owner may think of cost-effectiveness or
the attractiveness of the lab to potential top recruits as
quality issues, while the facilities manager may think of
Don’t Forget the Green
It’s really not optional anymore. Sustainable design must be a part of the
holistic approach to building a lab.
A few tips and techniques can help create synergy among the various design elements, yielding
an optimized interior that is cost-effect
Microplate Readers: Evolutionary Changes Bring Greater Function, Flexibility
Although a mature product category,
microplate readers are evolving towards
greater functionality, flexibility,
and throughput. All top instrument
makers are focusing at least some efforts
Lab Washers: To Centralize or Not To Centralize?
The question of limited access or general access to laboratory goods and services applies to a range of instruments, utilities, and competencies. These questions take on added significance for midsized or larger labs.
Particle Sizing: It's Not All About Size
Whether your business is pharmaceuticals, mining, paints, or foods, you are probably working with smaller particles than you were a decade ago.
Pipettes: Making the Most of Maintenance Options
Best practices dictate that pipettes undergo
preventive maintenance and calibration
at least once per year. Calibration
involves dispensing set volumes
of a liquid, usually water, into the
weighing pan of a calibrated balance.
10 Tips to Improve Your Pipetting Technique
Of all the factors contributing to the performance of a pipette, the most critical are the skill and expertise of the operator.
1. Prewet the pipette tip
Aspirate and fully expel an amount of the liquid at
least 3 times before aspirating
Raman Analyzers: Out of the Lab, Into the Field
Raman spectroscopy has undergone a revolution during the last seven to 10 years, largely as a result of massive investment in the telecommunications industry. Improvements have come through what Eric Bergles, VP of sales and marketing at Bayspec (San
Cut to the Bone
If you examine your recent accident and injury reports,
we bet that the most frequent type of injury will
be cuts or lacerations. Given the volume of glassware
used, the frequency of daily use, and the diverse types
of glassware in many laborator
Maintain a Centrally Located Departmental Safety Library
One of the characteristics of an effective safety program is the availability
of reference and resource materials. Employees need to have easy access
to this information. Your chemical hygiene plan, your material safety data
sheets, and other refe
Perspective On: An Environmental Research Lab
Michael Glavanovich receives
calls with all kinds of strange
requests. Once, a woman
phoned to ask him if a piece of
meat tossed into her yard for her
dog contained poison. Although he
couldn’t help the woman, Glavanovich
was able to direct he
One Step Ahead
When starting a business, an up-front investment is
necessary to hire the talented personnel, acquire the
appropriate equipment and instrumentation, and secure
the space required to operate the new business successfully.
Typically those initial a
Easing Regulatory Compliance
Depending on your perspective, you may view regulatory compliance as a necessary but unwelcome expense, a hurdle in the race to market, a vital measure to protect public health and safety, or perhaps all three.
Whatever your views, you probably d
Evolution of Water Baths and Chillers
There are a number of standard laboratory procedures and processes that need to be conducted at specific and stable temperatures. As this temperature may be either above or below room temperature,
Are You in the Market for Ion Chromatography?
Ion chromatography (IC) is an instrumental technique used extensively in the environmental, pharmaceutical, life sciences, biotechnology, chemical, petrochemical, food and beverage, power generation, and electronics industries. Applications include a
Are You in The Market For a Microplate Reader? See The Survey Results
Microplate readers are widely used in research, drug discovery, bioassay validation, QC, and manufacturing
processes for the detection of biological, chemical, or physical processes in samples contained
in microtiter plates. There are a wide variet
Are You in the Market For a pH Meter?
The pH meter is an essential piece of equipment in most laboratories, vital for many analytical and synthetic processes. Typical pH meters consist of a glass electrode connected to an electronic meter. The electrode produces a small voltage, which is
Are You in the Market for qPCR?
Within a decade of its discovery in 1983, Real-Time
PCR—also called quantitative polymerase chain
reaction (qPCR)— evolved into one of the most
powerful and sensitive gene analysis techniques
available. Real-time PCR measures PCR amplification
The Right Choice For Analytical Balances
Analytical balances are used to measure mass with a high degree of precision. These electronic instruments have the ability to record the mass of an object to 0.0001 grams
Technology News - October 2011
Nano Particle Analyzer
Analyzes key particle physical properties including size and zeta potential
Capable of performing size measurements at both right angle (90°) and backscatter (173°)
Comparing Microvolume and Cuvette Based Measurements of Microbial Cell Cultures
Microvolume assessment of bacterial culture growth was found to facilitate measurement of undiluted cultures. Comparison between microvolume and cuvette-based data requires the use of a conversion factor, which can be simply determined.
How It Works
Robotic Personal Workstations
Problem: With the rapid pace and high demands of research that dominate today’s research laboratories, scientists require faster, more dependable, and safer means of accomplishing detail-oriented and potentially tedious liquid handling tasks, w
Problem: Highly concentrated nucleic acid and protein samples must be diluted before they can be read on most absorbance-based spectrophotometers, and conversely, diluted samples must be concentrated
An Energy Efficient Laboratory Oven
Problem: The global energy crisis is growing and is driving the costs of energy higher, making energy consciousness not only a necessity in terms of the environment, but also important for cost savings.