R&D experimental work

Your lab is similar to this scenario:

Research and development department performing non-repetitive, exploratory projects. Typically, a collection of different methods is used in the same project and usually the experiments represent a method that is applied to biological specimens such as cells. Each experiment is often different from the next one, however experiments are still structured and designed in advance. Data analysis is usually done for each method separately and then conclusions are summarized and reported for all experiments in the project. Experiments are typically performed for internal purposes and not necessarily for customers.

Size: A growing, small/medium enterprise (SME), around 10 people to start with, a research & development group inside a company, academic research laboratory

Keywords describing the example: R&D, research and development, planning, experiments, data analysis, biological samples, biological specimens

Suggested SciNote structure:

1. Team: For you, the team is your research & development group. Team members are people who work on different (or same) projects and collaborate when needed. 

3. Experiments: Each experiment within the project represents a method that is applied to biological samples. Experiment names can reflect the method’s name, e.g. qPCR.

2. Project: In this case, projects are the research projects your lab is working on.

4. Tasks: Tasks can represent protocols for individual methods used in the experiment. In case the method is more complex, or has several stages that may spread throughout a few days, each individual Task can represent a stage (e.g. sample prep, reagent prep, plating, the core of the method, quality control, data readout). You can also connect these tasks into a workflow that in the end represents these complex methods.

To sum it up, your SciNote structure could be

Team 1: Your Lab Team

Project(s): Project name 1 (Project name 2 etc.)

Experiment(s): qPCR, WB, Microscopy, …

Horizon project

Task(s): qPCR protocol (or multiple tasks with different protocols and to-do lists: RNA isolation, Reverse transcription, qPCR, data analysis etc)

Examples of additional functionalities that are helpful:

Copy as template: When your next sample arrives and you decide what is to be done, you can copy the experiment as a template and reuse it, or copy one or all tasks as templates. Also, your protocols can be saved in the repository and used when and where needed.

Inventory management: Inventories in SciNote are lists (repositories, libraries) of whatever you need e.g. samples, equipment, reagents or something completely different. They are completely editable so your columns can contain names, ID codes, barcodes, files, dates and more.  You can always add a new item to the inventory and then assign it to the task within the experiment. This means you will always have the full history of what has been done with each inventory item, one click away.

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