Benchtalk Summit: A Scientist’s Perspective
Madelyn is a scientist at TScan Therapeutics, an immunotherapeutics company located in Boston, Massachusetts. Madelyn recently presented at the Benchling Cambridge happy hour, where she discussed how Benchling made organizing and structuring TScan’s data the easiest part of setting up their lab. This fall, Madelyn is attending Benchtalk Summit, and she has shared with us what she is most excited for!
When I attend Benchling events in Boston, I’m struck by the excitement in the room. There’s something different about Benchling’s events that separates them from the typical biotech networking event. For one, the room is filled with so many scientists — people who actually use an electronic lab notebook everyday — whereas many networking events tend to be more focused on recruiting and business development. But at these Benchling events, we gather together not just to share our latest research, but to also share in the experience of transforming our research. What’s more, we’re all from different corners of the Boston biotech scene — geneticists, synthetic biologists, biomedical engineers, data scientists, program managers, IT experts and entrepreneurs — and many of us may not otherwise have crossed professional paths. Yet here we are together, and all excited by the same experience: learning to use tools that enable our research, rather than hinder it.
Across the life sciences, we’re all familiar with the paper lab notebooks full of handwritten notes and taped-in readouts, the enormous, lab-wide archive of Excel spreadsheets, and to-do lists that are trapped in emails. But Benchling has found a way to transform all of that by building software that makes sense and providing customer support to make us all successful in using it. So, at their happy hour in Cambridge earlier this year, I joined my colleagues to discuss the challenges my team faced in establishing our R&D platform and share how Benchling turned the most arduous task in that process — structuring all of our data — into the easiest part of setting up the lab.
This fall, I’ll be joining my colleagues again, this time as an attendee, at Benchling’s user forum, Benchtalk Summit. The main event will include a series of speakers discussing their organization’s use of Benchling — I find these incredibly helpful since they provide insights into new ways of leveraging tools I already use. I’m also looking forward to learning what Benchling has in store for the future during the roadmap presentation.
But Benchling has also included a new component at this event, which was inspired by customer feedback from prior events: A user workshop series focused on training, educating, and empowering us to further advance our research with groundbreaking software.
These workshops will delve into the advanced functionality of Benchling applications that we use every day. The first track includes a deep dive into the Registry, Inventory, and Molecular Biology tools. But I’m personally planning to attend the second track, which will cover Benchling’s plans for their new “analytics” application and will include a hands-on training on the extant developer platform and reporting functions. As TScan bridges our R&D data with more clinical patient-centric data, having an advanced reporting framework will be crucial for us.
I am also looking forward to the other aspects of the event, like the talk from the founders and the time where I’ll be able to meet and share ideas with other scientists at the coffee hour and happy hour. But what stands out to me most in Benchling’s Benchtalk Summit lineup is the continued commitment to supporting customer needs and user experience. I’m looking forward to joining my peers across disciplines to learn more about transforming our work and sharing new ideas and excitement for the world of life science R&D – and I hope you can join us!