The Society for Laboratory Automation and Screening (SLAS) held their annual conference January 25–29 in San Diego, California. The show hosts presentations, short courses and an exhibition of laboratory automation systems and associated products. It is also considered an important venue for networking, SLAS initiatives and SLAS member enrichment.
Laboratory automation is an enabling technology in today’s laboratories, whether from academic labs studying genomic mutations to biophamaceutical companies developing immunotherapy drugs to routine quality control testing of finished drug products. The key advantages of lab automation are speed, consistency and productivity—essentially taking the laborious and often tedious lab duties out of scientists’ hands, freeing them up to actually do science. For more information on the laboratory automation market, please see SDi’s Laboratory Automation Market Brief.
Lab automation tools include benchtop liquid handlers, sample storage devices and sample management software, as well as consumables, such as microplates, reagents and pipette tips. For larger labs running hundreds or even thousands of samples, there are workcells that contain an entire workflows and also encompass tools such as robotics, plate readers and thermal cyclers. SLAS is also an important show for analytical techniques, such as cell imaging and biosensors, which benefit from automated solutions.
Below is a list of new products launched at this year’s show.