Must See at SLAS2013

Dec 03, 2012


The Lab Man presents his list of five must-see presentations at the upcoming SLAS2013 Conference, chosen because they may present you with something that you’ve not had a lot of exposure to and thus may set off some creative thoughts. One of the best aspects of our conference is the opportunity to walk across the hall and take in a presentation that may be out of your typical realm but just might make a connection with the problems you face. They may actually be old thoughts to a different audience, but they’re new to many of us. Cross-fertilization with other industries and disciplines – that’s what it’s all about. Don’t be afraid to explore! 


Continuous Flow Multi-Step Synthesis, Monday, January 14, 2013, 10:30 – 11:00 a.m., Timothy Jamison, MIT. Did you know that continuous-flow assays were the first high-throughput laboratory assays (1950s)? The chemical industry has been using this approach for synthesis for decades. Yet in life science R&D, this technology has largely been forgotten. New approaches, tools and techniques are bringing continuous flow techniques back as a viable alternative. Rediscover an old, now-new paradigm. (see the Nov 26th cover story of C&E News) 

Exploration and Analysis of Complex Data Using Topological Data Analysis, Monday, January 14, 2013, 11:00 – 11:30 a.m., Pek Lum, Ayasdi. Everyone talks about big data and the challenges of going from that to actual information and knowledge. One of the most memorable talks The Lab Man has gone to over the years was when an IT specialist from the banking industry told those of us in pharma R&D that our informatics issues paled compared to international investment banking and that we were all reinventing the wheel. Perhaps these folks from the Stanford Computational Topology Lab will say something similar? Don’t miss it. 

On-line Nano-Pore Optical Interferometry (NPOI) Mass Spectrometry (MS) for Screening and Quantifying Small Molecule-Protein Interactions, Monday, January 14, 2013, 12:00 – 12:30 p.m., Paul Schnier, Amgen. Unless you visit the ASMS conference, you might not realize that classic analytical techniques like mass spec and LC-MS have become highly powerful, accessible and affordable tools for gaining deep insights into biological systems, and in high-throughput modes if you wish. Look over your shoulder; the spectroscopists are coming! 

Self-Imaging Petri Dishes for Direct Image Streaming from the Incubators, Tuesday, January 15, 2013, 10:30 – 11:00 a.m., Changhuei Yang, California Institute of Technology. Real-time, microscopy level images of growing cell cultures, streamed from the incubator environment using a mobile phone as the imaging and communication device. It’s like an episode of CSI! And they use Android!

Foldit and Games for Scientific Discovery, Tuesday, January 15, 2013, 11:30 a.m. – 12:00 p.m., Seth Cooper, University of Washington. Can crowdsourcing really help us solve scientific problems? I’m a skeptic, but let me count the number of predictions I’ve gotten wrong! No – it’ll take too long. Any collaboration between a biochemistry lab and the Center for Game Science (who knew such existed?) has to be fun to hear about.  


Also don't forget the nine finalists for the SLAS2013 Innovation Award.  Check the SLAS2013 website.  

Until Next Time,

Domo Arigato, Mr. Roboto!



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