There are many ways to label samples in the lab, though some of these may not be particularly efficient. Here, we’ll review these labeling pitfalls and provide tips to remedy them, which will make your lab more productive and organized.
The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) requires that all medical devices are identified with a unique device identifier (UDI), in both human and machine-readable forms. This system was put in place to enable healthcare providers and manufacturers to more quickly identify flawed devices, leading to faster recalls, and a reduction in medical errors.
Though scientists are exceptionally smart and resourceful people, they aren’t always the neatest. I’ve walked into many labs where the area around the weigh scale is littered with unidentified powdery substances and the sink is full of unwashed labware. Unfortunately, cleanliness is extremely important in the lab, as chemicals and microorganisms can quickly contaminate freezers, benches, and incubators if not kept properly cleaned, making the lab a potential danger for both you and your samples.
As of the day this article was written, more than 20,000 cases of the new coronavirus, named 2019-nCoV, have been confirmed in China.1 The disease, which originated in Wuhan, a city in the Hubei province of China, has taken over headlines across the world as it currently has the potential to drive a global pandemic, with the WHO declaring it a global health emergency. Though the fatality rate is currently not as high as either of its two relatives, SARS and MERS, everyone is taking the threat seriously, particularly in China, where cities have become ghost towns.2
First discovered in the 1950s, transmission electron microscopy (TEM) is now one of the most widely used techniques to resolve cellular structures. It bombards a specimen with an electron beam, which is focused with magnetic lenses to give an extremely high-resolution image, making it possible to view subcellular organelles—and sometimes full atoms and molecules—with much more precision than either light or confocal microscopes can provide.
Barcodes are one of the best ways to track and trace items. They’re found everywhere, in supermarkets, industrial warehouses, labs, and medical facilities. However, barcodes didn’t just appear out of nowhere; a lot of time, effort, and hard work went into their initial development. Here’s the story of how they were first designed and patented more than 70 years ago.
Appropriately identifying patient specimens is of critical importance to pathology labs. The College of Pathologists previously evaluated the average cost of labeling errors at approximately $280,000 per million specimens, adding up to over $1 million dollars a year for some of the larger institutes.1 Specimen labeling errors also result in the failure to provide proper and immediate care for patients, which can severely harm the patient, resulting in unnecessary morbidity and mortality.2
Employing mammalian cell lines is crucial in life science research, especially with new, more relevant models of disease engineered with induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs). Here, we’ve come up with some basic tips to help culture cell lines, regardless of their source.
We’ve reached the end of 2019, which is the perfect time to look back at everything that happened throughout the year at GA International. From new products to a brand-new website, GA has seen significant growth since 2018, including the establishment of new facilities, newly hired personnel, and winning several awards along the way.
Everyone’s had their run-ins with contamination in the lab. There are two main types of contamination—biological (bacteria or fungi) and chemical—both of which can easily ruin your day, making cell cultures unusable and skewing your experimental results. Below, we’ll review many of the ways you can avoid spreading contamination throughout your lab.