In today’s life sciences laboratories, researchers and lab managers are faced with a vast array of information sources – from journal articles, lab notebooks and protocols to the specimens, ordering and tracking information and calibrations. The way this information is managed is less than practical given the technology we have at our fingertips – distributed and stored between a mix of poorly annotated Excel spreadsheets, post-it notes, invoices and color-coded stickers to help distinguish which plate belongs to which experiment.

Needless to say, we can do better to get the administrative burden out of the way, and free up researchers to do better science, helping them keep track of the progress of their own work and collaborate with others.

Biodata, one of our portfolio companies, is working on just that. They have unveiled a new research management tool designed to help make researchers more productive, and enable better, more efficient science. The tool is called Labguru, a lightweight research management tool for use in the lab. The announcement came from Denver, where BioData are exhibiting at American Society for Cell Biology’s Annual Meeting. Labguru comes in the form of a web application, designed to help researchers better organise the various bits of information in their lab, plan their experiments, share results with peers and track progress.

The tool builds off their earlier product, BioKM, as well as the LabLife software (assets that BioData acquired earlier this autumn.

Labguru is free for all individuals. Additional functionality and sharing capability (think, expanding the use to other colleagues and/or peers in the lab) can be added for a nominal monthly fee. For a full look at the feature’s visit their web site, or have a look at their press release in our Latest News section.

This is only the first step in making research at the bench more efficient, and we welcome your feedback. Help us spread the word, and do let us know what you think. Stay tuned for more from BioData in the new year.