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CellPort Connect - CC 108: How COVID Changed the Lab

When we look at the the industry, the the life sciences industry in just the last five or six years, there has been an interesting labor shortage in identifying skilled personnel who are familiar with all of this sort of life or cell-based operation, molecular biologist, cell biologist, and all of this. The emergence of cell and gene, the COVID vaccines that were built in the COVID in itself has has spurned all this, this, this research and we, we have not been able to sort of meet the demand of that and one of the things that we see out there is an opportunity for a lot of these academic institutions to train the students, not only just on lab techniques so that when they graduate, whether it's a two year program or a four year program, lab techniques are mastered and, and they're better prepared to take on, you know, the first job they get. What we also see there though is is that the lab of the future is going to be digital and I'm not talking just full automation. I'm talking about aspects that are partial automation. A lot of still manual work because automation is not for every aspect of the lab operation, but what is important is that everything we do is captured and so much of just capturing data is one aspect of it and the other aspect is the observations that the scientist makes. When those experiments are occurring, we see an opportunity with the CellPort of incorporating into these academic institutions so that the students are comfortable with digitalization and I think the upcoming generation will have no problem adapting. They just need the tools that work and so when they graduate, they become better positioned, going into industry, not being either intimidated or not being familiar with the processes of how do you record all your activities? How do you work within a system that can archive data and then you can retrieve it. You can graph it. You can record it. You can communicate. I think it's very important that these type of tools CellPort especially is incorporated into the academic process for these generations that are the upcoming generations that are graduating.

Even at the community college level, we've seen a lot of activity and interest in CellPort activity that is providing feeder programs into the biotechnology companies in in those communities. The Philadelphia Enquirer had an article that discussed someone who had liberal arts background, no scientific background whatsoever, went through the program and is now a lab manager in a biotech company and that speaks to one of the things that we're trying to emphasize with CellPort, which is upskilling the ability to take someone who may have a skill gap between where they are and where more seasoned scientists might be and the ability to bridge that gap between skills. Having the ability to have those junior people be at almost the same level as the more seasoned scientists in the group and that's definitely something that with particularly protocols in CellPort, we have the ability to, to impact the ability to allow someone to come into an organization and have a dramatic and immediate impact, follow the same procedures that other people are following all again in a traceable and transparent way.

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