Quick Look: Integrating Analytical Data and Understanding Its Context in LabKey Biologics
One of the core challenges laboratory teams encounter is centralizing their data so it can be easily viewed and analyzed in a single place. Without centralized data, teams must turn to time consuming and error prone manual integration methods to derive value from their analytical data.
LabKey Server’s robust mechanisms for defining assays and uploading assay data are helpful for bringing analytical data into a single system, but LabKey Biologics takes this one step further and provides valuable structure and connections that help biologics research teams understand how that analytical data fits into the larger context.
LabKey Assay Designs: Standardizing Analytical Data Structures
LabKey Biologics allows teams to define or customize assay designs (many editable assay design templates come pre-defined within the system) to capture analytical data in a specific structure. Some teams using LabKey Biologics may need to define only a few assay designs to support their research, while others working in a more complex environment may need to define 100+.
When building an assay design, laboratory teams can choose to add fields specific to batches, runs and results to provide additional context for their data. LabKey supports a wide variety of field types (including integer, float, boolean, and text) and users can configure aliases, validation rules, and a variety of other characteristics for each.
Integrating Data Into the System
Once an assay design has been built in LabKey Biologics, data can be added to the system using that design to provide its structure. There are a number of different ways to load your assay data into LabKey Biologics including:
- Automatically uploading via the LabKey API
- Manually uploading spreadsheets
- Pasting spreadsheet-type data
- Entering data into a form
The first strategy, automatically uploading, leverages the APIs of LabKey Biologics to allow other instruments or file systems to talk directly to the system. The other three strategies involved a manual process suitable for varying use cases. If you have a large spreadsheet to integrate, you might want to use the manual upload method or paste the tabular data directly into the application. If you just have a couple of values you want to enter, simply entering the data into a form in the LabKey Biologics UI might be the simplest strategy.
Leveraging Sample Lineage for Context
As you know, analytical data generated during experiments is tied to a specific sample. Because the lineage of samples is tracked in LabKey Biologics, the application will automatically query sample lineage when data is uploaded and present relevant biological entities side-by-side with analytical data. Showing the sequence or molecule information adjacent to the analytical data, allows scientists to easily ask questions of their data and conduct comparisons with other sequences that are seen in different experiments.