With the release of the HCS Workcell, Thermo have shown its commitment to this sector of the pharmaceutical machinery sector. High content screening, screens that look beyond the interaction of a compound with a target, has gained greater acceptance within the industry set to become a $700 million (€527 million) market by 2008.
As HCS increases in throughput capabilities, it could potentially replace high throughput screening (HTS) in the primary screening stages. Performing HCS earlier in the drug discovery process will improve efficiency and limit the number of irrelevant compounds explored.
The HCS WorkCell has been designed to meet the needs of cell-based analysis for applications such as stem cell research, cell health, and sRNAi technology.
The vertical integration for "floor to ceiling" space utilisation is just one of the advantages the HCS WorkCell offers in comparison to larger, more costly, customisable platforms.
These include a full enclosure system with safety interlocks, optimised scheduling for overlapping operations and maximum component utilisation. These features result in the reduction of turnaround times.
The included instrumentation and software enable complete sample preparation and scheduled analysis, while its web service capabilities allow for easy configuration of the HCS WorkCell for sample tracking and data export to LIMS.
The HCS WorkCell can be utilised with Thermo's Orchestrator software, offering a powerful workflow optimisation tool that can significantly improve laboratory operations.
Orchestrator is a software solution with the ability to connect the flow of information from automation scheduling software to a LIMS database.
This enables researchers to gather, analyse and use essential data more effectively. The Orchestrator software is available through Thermo for use on its WorkCell platforms.
Further details of the HCS WorkCell appear on Thermo Electron 's website.