Going out on a LIMS

Applied Bio and Mettler Toledo team up to simplify workflow and data transfer in labs.

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FOSTER CITY, Calif.—Applied Biosystems recently announced an integrated solution with Greifensee, Switzerland-based Mettler Toledo aimed at improving the workflow and the transfer of information in laboratories for many scientific disciplines, among the most prominent being the life science and chemistry industries. To do so, the companies are integrating Applied Biosystems' SQL*LIMS laboratory information management system (LIMS) with Mettler Toledo's LabX Data Management Software. The combination is said to allow users to manage data more efficiently, while saving researchers time and costs in day-to-day laboratory processes, when compared to using instruments that are controlled by their own software and that operate independently of any information management systems. Applied Biosystems will sell, install and maintain SQL*LIMS systems and implement the integration of LabX software. "There is great synergy between our companies, as Mettler Toledo has huge penetration into places like pharmaceutical [companies], where we are very strong as well," notes Peter Boogaard, director for LIMS product management for Applied Biosystems. "Also, our LIMS is very departmentally and enterprise related, whereas Metter Toledo is more at the benchtop level, and that means that together we can provide a real bottom-up and top-down set of capabilities."The fact that both companies operate globally was an additional plus, Boogaard says. "Also, we are very strong as an organization for implementation and consultancy, which is a set of capabilities Mettler Toledo doesn't really have, so putting our two companies together, customers will get a very complete solution.""We looked to partner with one of the leading LIMS suppliers in the laboratory world, who had the necessary credentials to support our customers in their informatics needs," says Holger Linnertz, head of the LabX Competence Center at Mettler Toledo. The companies approached the collaboration as a two-stage process. As of now, the first phase is complete and Mettler Toledo's balances can be fully implemented on SQL*LIMS. Phase 2, once complete, will roll out a true enterprise-level integration of SQL*LIMS and LabX.An integration like this is important to researchers, Boogaard notes, because so much of their work begins with weighing or titration. For a laboratory to meet GLP standards, these processes must be perfected and fully checked for accuracy before they can be used routinely, he notes, and the combined SQL*LIMS and LabX package provides a fully validated system that eliminates the need to check each process for accuracy. SQL*LIMS can be used by laboratories to manage the entire laboratory workflow. Once the packages are integrated, SQL*LIMS takes sample data and, using LabX Data Management Software, sends all operator instructions to the Mettler Toledo instrument screen as a simple and intuitive user interface, so that users can operate the laboratory instruments as normal. The software guides the operator through each step of a work list. DDNeditconnect: e020807

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