Electronic lab notebook for

Max Planck scientists

General information

Labfolder at the MPG

Labfolder is an electronic lab notebook that allows you to organize, record and share data obtained in a laboratory on a secure platform. The Max Plank Digital Library (MPDL) licenses Labfolder via a central contract so that researchers can focus on its use instead of dealing with contracting and licensing costs. The official announcement, as well as a link to the press release, can be found here.

 

What are the benefits of using an electronic lab notebook?

Integrate all your data directly into your records
Search and filter through full texts to find entries
Customize entries by dragging and dropping different elements
Collaborate with colleagues
Create templates and protocols for recurring workflows
Set up multiple databases to organize laboratory materials
Securely encrypted via SSL and backed up regularly
To see a full list of features, click here.

 

MPG Case Studies

MPI for the Science of Light
MPI for Terrestrial Microbiology
MPI for the Science of Light

André Gemeinhardt

Doctoral Student

 

 

"We can keep a nice and organized track of our work and we are able to find things that we did in the past, even if the respective group member has left the group in the meantime."

 

 

 

Could you tell us a bit about your research and what you find exciting about it?

I am working in a research field that combines optics (microscopy, nano optics, laser technology) with biology (cellular interaction, viruses, DNA, proteins). I find it exciting that I work in a chemical, biological, and optical lab on a daily basis and combine all these fields to learn more about nature. I am working on my PhD thesis in the field of biophysics.

How does your team use Labfolder? What are the tasks that are being completed using our software?

We just started to use Labfolder in our group as an electronic lab notebook. We document our experiments and research with Labfolder. The type of work that is carried out and needs to be documented is very broad, as we have physicists, biologists, and chemists working with the tool.

How does Labfolder help your research team achieve its objectives?

We can keep a nice and organized track of our work and we are able to find things that we did in the past, even if the respective group member has left the group in the meantime. We don't need to tediously search for entries in old hardcopy lab books or end up redoing the same experiments over and over again.

Do you have any tips for other Labfolder users, to help them make sure that their research data is well organized and easily retrievable?

If you have a large group and work in different types of work, organisation can be tricky. Our experiments usually evolve around a specific optical setup. That is why we structured actual laboratory room numbers with folders and setups with sub folders. This allows to easily find notes about a certain project.

 

Additionally, we adapted the concept of a material database in Labfolder for large devices that we share within the group (like an atomic force microscope or a sputtering machine). When someone creates an entry, he can tag such an device in it. This allows for a easy search if you want to find all the things you (or also other users) did on a specific device.

MPI for Terrestrial Microbiology

Dominik Schumacher

Postdoctoral Fellow

 

 

"Starting with Labfolder was an important step in renewing our entire documentation system which allows us to distribute information in an easy way to new people in the lab."

 

 

Could you tell us a bit about your research and what you find exciting about it?

The focus of our research is to understand mechanisms that allow bacteria to adapt and differentiate in response to environmental changes. These include rapid changes in gene expression, regulation of cellular locomotion and cell cycle regulation. To investigate the underlying mechanisms, we make use of genetic manipulation and fluorescence live cell imaging as well as a variety of biochemical assays. This information is a prerequisite to understand how bacterial regulate these processes in space and time.

How does your team use Labfolder? What are the tasks that are being completed using our software?

With Labfolder we have completely replaced our hand-written lab notes to a modern and sophisticated documentation system. We use Labfolder for our daily work by documenting experiments and results as well as sharing protocols within the different subgroups of the lab. Finally, we implemented Labfolder as a tool for inventory management of genetically modified bacterial strains, plasmids and proteins.

How does Labfolder help your research team achieve its objectives?

One important feature of Labfolder is that it keeps track of a lot of information. In addition it finds the single plasmid map you are looking for in many pages of documentation with its advanced search option. With this you spend less time on looking through pages manually and can spend more time on the important things in your research.

Do you have any tips for other Labfolder users, to help them make sure that their research data is well organized and easily retrievable?

We use Labfolder to organize our inventory documentation of genetic plasmids and strains. We mark single entries with tags that can be found with the search tool. These entries can then be exported as pdf documents.

   

Labfolder White Papers

Our white papers section provides important information on compliance regulations and guidelines that are typically implemented in laboratories and how Labfolder helps you to comply to these.

Go to white papers

How to get access

MPG central installation

Labfolder can be used on the central installation provided by the MPDL. All of your data will be securely stored at the GWDG. To create a new account, you must be connected to the Max Planck network. Once your account is set up, you no longer need to be connected to the network, and you will be able to log in to Labfolder from anywhere.

Create Account

 

Local server installation

Each institute also has the option to install and host Labfolder locally. If you are interested in receiving more information about setting up Labfolder on-site, then please reach out to your Account Manager Anne Kriegel.

The currently existing local installations with their respective links are listed below. In order to access them, you must be connected to the MPG network and be a member of the respective institute.

MPI of Biochemistry
MPI for Biophysical Chemistry
MPI for Chemical Ecology
MPI for Chemistry
MPI for Dynamics of Complex Technical Systems
MPI of Experimental Medicine
MPI for Infection Biology
MPI for Molecular Genetics
MPI of Molecular Physiology
MPI for the Biology of Aging
MPI for Psycholinguistics
MPI of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics
 

Create a group

Within Labfolder, you are able to create a shared space, called Labfolder group. This will enable you to work collaboratively on your research questions and share common protocols with your team.

  1. Go to Manage > Groups.
  2. Click on +Add button to Add a new group.
  3. Name your Labfolder group and confirm by clicking Create.

 

 

Invite your colleagues

Once your group is set up, you can invite your entire team. From this moment onwards, you can use your electronic laboratory notebook to collaborate with your colleagues in real-time. They will be able to add their own entries to common projects, create a shared repository of protocols, comment on your data to speed up troubleshooting, and even assign and receive tasks to improve lab efficiency.

  1. Go to Manage > Groups.
  2. Invite colleagues by going into the group and pressing the +Add button to Invite user.
  3. Enter their email address and start your collaborations!

 

 

Join your group

If you were invited into a Labfolder group, an invitation will be sent to your email address. To accept this group invitation, you can click on the Join the team! button in the middle of the email to create your account or simply login with your existing login credentials. Then follow these simple steps:

  1. Once signed in navigate to Manage > Groups.
  2. Click on Invitation pending on the top panel. The admin who invited you and the group that you will join is stated in the dropdown window. Also, a warning will display if the admin of the group prevents private projects.
  3. Confirm by clicking the Join group button.

 

Self-training materials

Self-training materials to set up your ELN for success

To get yourself acquainted with Labfolder, we recommend that you take a look at our guide. Here, you will find step-by-step explanations and animations demonstrating how to use each feature.

Go to guide

Our website also provides a helpdesk where you can find frequently asked questions. Questions are sorted by topics, but you can also use the search bar at the top of the page to find them.

Go to helpdesk

Through our manuals you can explore the platform even more thorough. Start by learning about the basic features and then move onto the more complex features like digital signatures.

Go to manuals


 

YouTube Tutorials

Labregister has many features which allow you to organize your laboratory inventory. From being able to link inventory items to your laboratory notes to team collaboration features, Labregister helps users streamline their inventory processes.

Take a look at Labfolder’s Well Plate Template app! Choose from a number of different formats, to suit your medium to high throughput screenings. Additionally, you can customize your Multi-Well Plate with colours and conditions to distinguish the different layers.

Online trainings

Your Labfolder Account Manager

Hi, I am Anne, the Max-Planck Account Manager taking care of all MPG related matters. Just briefly about myself: I received my diploma in Plant Biotechnology from the University of Hohenheim and have a PhD in plant developmental biology from the University of Heidelberg. Including research trips to England and Brazil, I have over 6 years of experience working in research laboratories. I joined Labfolder mid-2016 since I am convinced that electronic lab notebooks are the future and fit better with the way of working in modern laboratories. My two favorite features are the advanced search capabilities and team collaboration on research projects.

If you are interested in Labfolder training or have general questions about Labfolder at MPG, please contact me via anne.kriegel@labforward.io.

Anne Kriegel

Stay informed

If you would like to receive news about Labfolder, such as information about new updates and maintenance work on the central MPG installation, feel free to subscribe to the mailing list managed by the MPDL.

Subscribe to mailing list

 

To keep yourself up to date on any server updates, such as the functionalities that have been added to Labfolder and which bugs were fixed, please take a look at our server release notes.

Release notes

Contact

Labfolder’s Support Team

Labfolder’s support team is entirely composed of former scientists, understanding the struggles in the laboratory. We are happy to help you with any questions you may have about using our ELN. In order to quickly address any problems you are experiencing, we would kindly ask you to send a short description together with some screenshots to feedback@labfolder.com.

We are also the right people to contact if you have any suggestions for features that you think are missing in Labfolder. Again, please explain what functionality you are looking for and what you are tryin to achieve with this.

FAQs

Frequently asked questions

Our website provides a helpdesk where you can find frequently asked questions. Questions are sorted by topics, but you can also use the search bar at the top of the page to find them.

Go to helpdesk