During your protocol design, after having added your labware to the virtual bench, you will need to define the reagents present in each labware as well as their volumes. Even if it is possible to fill a labware with a reagent manually (see the “Fill a labware with a reagent” article) this feature offers the possibility to import all the information from an external source all the .
There are several ways to do so, described below and shown in the following figures:
To go directly to the import page, you can click the click the labware, then click the right-most contextual menu button (3 vertical dots) as shown in the figure below:
You can also go through the Labware Info tab, as described below:
1. Click on the labware you would like to fill. A small black contextual menu bar will appear close to the selected labware. Depending on the type of labware one of the following options will appear:
a. If it is a single location labware, a label showing an icon of a droplet of liquid with a plus logo, accompanied with the word “Add”. When you click the aforementioned button the “Fill ‘name of labware’ with reagent” menu will appear.
b. In case of a multi-location labware, the label shows “Inspect wells” instead.
2. Alternatively select your desired labware on the virtual bench and go to the Labware Info tab on the top right corner (#2 in the figure above).
3. In Labware Info tab click on the “Import reagent at start” button. In this menu you have the option to paste the reagents information by clicking on the “Paste from clipboard” button, following the formatting restrictions. Data can be copied (Ctrl+C) from Excel, Word, Notepad or similar programs, and must have the following structure. The name is mandatory, but the other five columns are optional and will be filled with default values if left blank. Columns need to be separated by tabs. Units should be in the form “au”, ”uM”, “mg/L” or similar. (See the following two images).
a. To copy your selection to the clipboard you can either Ctrl+C or right click the selection and choose ‘copy’.
Note: you do not need to type out the headers for each column (Name, concentration, etc), and be sure to not include them in your selection, only the lines below the header titles are needed.
With Notepad: (in this example below the headers are left out)
b. For a multi-location labware, both the position and name are mandatory.
c. If there are any errors in the importation, they will be displayed in a red box with the location of the error, in the example below, line 1 refers to row 1 of the copied data in the excel example (above), as the selection included the headers.
4. For a multi-location labware a last import modification can be done, by unchecking the checkbox corresponding of each data line you can choose to omit certain positions from the pasted set (see figure below).
5. When the parameters are set, the importation process can be launched by clicking on the “Fill labware” button.
In the last column on the right you can designate a reagent as a sample, the software will track these samples as you go through the experiment design and execution. This will also help employ good lab practices such as tip changes help avoid contamination. Below you can see an example of the message displayed when you click the encircled i next to that header:
To get the sample designation, simply write the word ‘sample’ in that column (examples below).