How the cloud will transform the way you do research

Imagine how your scientific research can be made easier

Imagine this scenario: you run a binding affinity assay on, let’s say, NanoTemper’s Monolith, and instead of just a Kd result, you get something like:

“This protein-protein system you’re investigating interacts with an affinity of 20 nM. Previously measured stability data on your Prometheus system shows that the buffer you’re using (HEPES) may destabilize one of the proteins, so you may want to use PBS buffer for your interaction experiments. What would you like to do next?:

  • Characterize the interaction interface: Based on the two protein structures, here are some suggestions for amino acid residues that are most likely directly involved in the interaction, a hypothesis that you could test via mutation analysis.
  • Inhibit the interaction: here are a few small molecule candidates that will probably interfere with this interaction. These small molecules are already well-characterized (toxicity, pharmacodynamics, etc) and are therefore good candidates for drugs.
  • Check protein quality: Run a quick Tycho experiment to confirm the quality of that protein in both buffers.”

This is a dream we have here at NanoTemper and one that we think we share with the scientific community. Wouldn’t it make research so much easier and more efficient if all the information and experimental data that already exists could be used in such an interconnected way?

 

The best of technology shouldn’t end with streaming movies

Many technological advances we’ve seen over the past decade or two can help us move in that direction and are already rapidly changing the products and services we use every day. We’ve watched video rentals and CDs die and streaming services boom; we use apps to conveniently get and pay for rides instead of hailing a taxi the old-fashioned way; we can use instant online translation services when we travel to foreign countries instead of having to carry around printed dictionaries and struggling to say even the simplest things.

Here at NanoTemper, we want to help bring a similar change to the research world.

 

What is the cloud and how can it improve research?

The magic word that all of these modern tools have in common is that they are so-called cloud services. What exactly people mean when they talk about clouds can differ quite a bit, but when it all comes together, we envision great benefits for the scientific community. If you ask us where we think this could lead us, we can tell you that we dream of a service that offers almost unlimited possibilities:

  • A place where you can manage and share your scientific data and insights, so researchers could come together to discuss recent results and upcoming publications.
  • A database that works with measurement data from all the equipment in your lab (we’re dreaming big!) so that, with machine learning algorithms, you can uncover difficult-to-find patterns and connections or you can connect with existing databases, like PDB or UniProt, for better context for your data.
    Software that allows you to visualize your data in any way you like, for any purpose, so you plan your assay in the same place that you use to get your graphs for publications.
  • A platform where you can monitor all the equipment in your lab, see who’s using it, book time on it, keep track of consumable stocks (and automatically order more when needed), and get alerts if any errors occur.

These are some examples of what cloud-based services may be able to do for us in the future. Some of these things are already happening, some others are further down the road.

 

With Tycho.Cloud, NanoTemper has started making our cloud dream a reality

At NanoTemper, we want to help accelerate this development, and we’ve started with a very specific but valuable part of it. We’ve developed Tycho.Cloud, a small, cloud-based software that offers data management and analysis features specifically for Tycho. It’s in beta, which means we’re constantly improving and tinkering with it, especially as a result of feedback from early users. But it already allows you to upload data directly from your Tycho and access it online from anywhere, and we’ve put in some analysis apps that many of our customers have requested for Tycho. It’s a start and we’re inviting you to join in!

Most importantly, it’ll help us figure out what you, the scientific community, need and want most, so that we can work on the features that are most important to you next.

 

Give Tycho.Cloud a try — it’s free in beta!

Give Tycho.Cloud a try, and let us know what you think. We’re very curious to hear your thoughts, and eager to learn where we can improve. As long as Tycho.Cloud is in beta, it’s free and open for anyone!

If you want to find out more about what Tycho.Cloud can do, keep an eye out as we post more updates on the NanoTemper blog.

About the Author

Beate Kern is the Product Manager for Tycho. She has a Master’s in Molecular Biotechnology which she studied at the Technical University of Munich and the Tokyo Institute of Technology. Bea went on to get a PhD in Microbiology at Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich, and afterwards joined NanoTemper. In addition to her passion for science, she enjoys yoga, music, and reading. Lately her favorite subjects to read about have been marketing, typography, and colors.
Beate Kern