Drug discovery in the new normal: Digital, Flexible, Mobile.

In the post-pandemic era what does the ‘new normal’ for scientific research look like? 

Digital, Flexible and Mobile!

‘New normal’ will inevitably mean more remote working and fewer opportunities for face to face interactions. The return to full normal will be a cautious journey. How can we address the challenges of the lack of direct contact and less time in the labs?

Communication imperatives can be managed by mail and video conferencing platforms. Wellbeing of staff working in isolation can be supported by apps that encourage positive behaviours, embed and naturalise new routines that help stave off the blues arising from missing colleagues and friends. However for scientists brought up in busy labs and collaborative attitudes, these will be hard yards.

 And about the actual acts of work itself?

What is needed is a suite of information management tools that gives transparency to lab processes that are designed by scientists to ensure that their use is enabling and not a burden. The tools should provide the fundamentals of effective, reliable, accessible and transparent data management (on the cloud for convenience and cost), with an integrated vehicle for sharing the full range of information to be gleaned from the data – text, graphics, video. Sharing without limits! 

And with the data available, the need turns to what is the higher value end of the suite of tools:

  • The ability to orchestrate and automate running analytical software over the data, in series and without impediment. 
  • The opportunity to apply AI / ML to the process of analytics to turn information into insights.
  • The ability to visualise and share the outputs of the investigative process to enable further analysis and direct the next phases of research.

Platinum Informatics is created to develop and deliver just that set of tools, Platinum Desimal, but without the foreknowledge of how essential they would become in the ‘new normal’. The design of the suite was led by the needs of multi-omics experiments and of its associated data and meta data.  So there is a strong compatibility with fundamental scientific processes.

Now in the ‘new normal’ the attributes of the Platinum Desimal suite are finding new opportunities for their application and high value add across the universe of scientific experimentation. 

Ken Fyvie

Non-Executive Director

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