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Automation: Controlled operation of an apparatus, process, or system by mechanical or electronic devices that take the place of human organs of observation, effort, and decision. (From Webster's Collegiate Dictionary, 1993)Automation, Laboratory: Controlled operations of analytic or diagnostic processes, or systems by mechanical or electronic devices.Laboratories: Facilities equipped to carry out investigative procedures.Library Automation: The use of automatic machines or processing devices in libraries. The automation may be applied to library administrative activities, office procedures, and delivery of library services to users.Autoanalysis: Method of analyzing chemicals using automation.Clinical Laboratory Techniques: Techniques used to carry out clinical investigative procedures in the diagnosis and therapy of disease.Laboratories, Hospital: Hospital facilities equipped to carry out investigative procedures.Robotics: The application of electronic, computerized control systems to mechanical devices designed to perform human functions. Formerly restricted to industry, but nowadays applied to artificial organs controlled by bionic (bioelectronic) devices, like automated insulin pumps and other prostheses.Automatic Data Processing: Data processing largely performed by automatic means.High-Throughput Screening Assays: Rapid methods of measuring the effects of an agent in a biological or chemical assay. The assay usually involves some form of automation or a way to conduct multiple assays at the same time using sample arrays.Animals, LaboratoryCatalogs, LibraryWork Simplification: The construction or arrangement of a task so that it may be done with the greatest possible efficiency.Minicomputers: Small computers that lack the speed, memory capacity, and instructional capability of the full-size computer but usually retain its programmable flexibility. They are larger, faster, and more flexible, powerful, and expensive than microcomputers.Software: Sequential operating programs and data which instruct the functioning of a digital computer.Chemistry, Clinical: The specialty of ANALYTIC CHEMISTRY applied to assays of physiologically important substances found in blood, urine, tissues, and other biological fluids for the purpose of aiding the physician in making a diagnosis or following therapy.Medical Laboratory Personnel: Health care professionals, technicians, and assistants staffing LABORATORIES in research or health care facilities.Library Technical Services: Acquisition, organization, and preparation of library materials for use, including selection, weeding, cataloging, classification, and preservation.ComputersReproducibility of Results: The statistical reproducibility of measurements (often in a clinical context), including the testing of instrumentation or techniques to obtain reproducible results. The concept includes reproducibility of physiological measurements, which may be used to develop rules to assess probability or prognosis, or response to a stimulus; reproducibility of occurrence of a condition; and reproducibility of experimental results.Specimen Handling: Procedures for collecting, preserving, and transporting of specimens sufficiently stable to provide accurate and precise results suitable for clinical interpretation.Algorithms: A procedure consisting of a sequence of algebraic formulas and/or logical steps to calculate or determine a given task.Sensitivity and Specificity: Binary classification measures to assess test results. Sensitivity or recall rate is the proportion of true positives. Specificity is the probability of correctly determining the absence of a condition. (From Last, Dictionary of Epidemiology, 2d ed)Inventories, Hospital: Materials and equipment in stock; includes drugs in pharmacies, blood in blood banks, etc.Computers, Analog: Computers in which quantities are represented by physical variables; problem parameters are translated into equivalent mechanical or electrical circuits as an analog for the physical phenomenon being investigated. (McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific and Technical Terms, 4th ed)Microfluidic Analytical Techniques: Methods utilizing the principles of MICROFLUIDICS for sample handling, reagent mixing, and separation and detection of specific components in fluids.Quality Control: A system for verifying and maintaining a desired level of quality in a product or process by careful planning, use of proper equipment, continued inspection, and corrective action as required. (Random House Unabridged Dictionary, 2d ed)Radioactivity: The spontaneous transformation of a nuclide into one or more different nuclides, accompanied by either the emission of particles from the nucleus, nuclear capture or ejection of orbital electrons, or fission. (McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific and Technical Terms, 6th ed)Electrophoresis, Capillary: A highly-sensitive (in the picomolar range, which is 10,000-fold more sensitive than conventional electrophoresis) and efficient technique that allows separation of PROTEINS; NUCLEIC ACIDS; and CARBOHYDRATES. (Segen, Dictionary of Modern Medicine, 1992)Aviation: Design, development, manufacture, and operation of heavier-than-air AIRCRAFT.Workflow: Description of pattern of recurrent functions or procedures frequently found in organizational processes, such as notification, decision, and action.Information Systems: Integrated set of files, procedures, and equipment for the storage, manipulation, and retrieval of information.Office Automation: Use of computers or computer systems for doing routine clerical work, e.g., billing, records pertaining to the administration of the office, etc.Clinical Laboratory Information Systems: Information systems, usually computer-assisted, designed to store, manipulate, and retrieve information for planning, organizing, directing, and controlling administrative and clinical activities associated with the provision and utilization of clinical laboratory services.Systems Integration: The procedures involved in combining separately developed modules, components, or subsystems so that they work together as a complete system. (From McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific and Technical Terms, 4th ed)Computer Systems: Systems composed of a computer or computers, peripheral equipment, such as disks, printers, and terminals, and telecommunications capabilities.Computer Communication Networks: A system containing any combination of computers, computer terminals, printers, audio or visual display devices, or telephones interconnected by telecommunications equipment or cables: used to transmit or receive information. (Random House Unabridged Dictionary, 2d ed)Polymerase Chain Reaction: In vitro method for producing large amounts of specific DNA or RNA fragments of defined length and sequence from small amounts of short oligonucleotide flanking sequences (primers). The essential steps include thermal denaturation of the double-stranded target molecules, annealing of the primers to their complementary sequences, and extension of the annealed primers by enzymatic synthesis with DNA polymerase. The reaction is efficient, specific, and extremely sensitive. Uses for the reaction include disease diagnosis, detection of difficult-to-isolate pathogens, mutation analysis, genetic testing, DNA sequencing, and analyzing evolutionary relationships.Equipment Design: Methods of creating machines and devices.Time and Motion Studies: The observation and analysis of movements in a task with an emphasis on the amount of time required to perform the task.User-Computer Interface: The portion of an interactive computer program that issues messages to and receives commands from a user.Methods: A series of steps taken in order to conduct research.Cataloging: Activities performed in the preparation of bibliographic records for CATALOGS. It is carried out according to a set of rules and contains information enabling the user to know what is available and where items can be found.Software Design: Specifications and instructions applied to the software.Colorimetry: Any technique by which an unknown color is evaluated in terms of standard colors. The technique may be visual, photoelectric, or indirect by means of spectrophotometry. It is used in chemistry and physics. (McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific and Technical Terms, 4th ed)Combinatorial Chemistry Techniques: A technology, in which sets of reactions for solution or solid-phase synthesis, is used to create molecular libraries for analysis of compounds on a large scale.Microbiological Techniques: Techniques used in microbiology.Miniaturization: The design or construction of objects greatly reduced in scale.Evaluation Studies as Topic: Studies determining the effectiveness or value of processes, personnel, and equipment, or the material on conducting such studies. For drugs and devices, CLINICAL TRIALS AS TOPIC; DRUG EVALUATION; and DRUG EVALUATION, PRECLINICAL are available.Laboratory Personnel: Professionals, technicians, and assistants staffing LABORATORIES.Database Management Systems: Software designed to store, manipulate, manage, and control data for specific uses.Image Processing, Computer-Assisted: A technique of inputting two-dimensional images into a computer and then enhancing or analyzing the imagery into a form that is more useful to the human observer.Hospital Information Systems: Integrated, computer-assisted systems designed to store, manipulate, and retrieve information concerned with the administrative and clinical aspects of providing medical services within the hospital.Ambulatory Care Information Systems: Information systems, usually computer-assisted, designed to store, manipulate, and retrieve information for planning, organizing, directing, and controlling administrative activities associated with the provision and utilization of ambulatory care services and facilities.Information Storage and Retrieval: Organized activities related to the storage, location, search, and retrieval of information.Sequence Analysis, DNA: A multistage process that includes cloning, physical mapping, subcloning, determination of the DNA SEQUENCE, and information analysis.Blood Specimen Collection: The taking of a blood sample to determine its character as a whole, to identify levels of its component cells, chemicals, gases, or other constituents, to perform pathological examination, etc.Programming Languages: Specific languages used to prepare computer programs.Drug Evaluation, Preclinical: Preclinical testing of drugs in experimental animals or in vitro for their biological and toxic effects and potential clinical applications.Expert Systems: Computer programs based on knowledge developed from consultation with experts on a problem, and the processing and/or formalizing of this knowledge using these programs in such a manner that the problems may be solved.Computational Biology: A field of biology concerned with the development of techniques for the collection and manipulation of biological data, and the use of such data to make biological discoveries or predictions. This field encompasses all computational methods and theories for solving biological problems including manipulation of models and datasets.Laboratory Proficiency Testing: Assessments aimed at determining agreement in diagnostic test results among laboratories. Identical survey samples are distributed to participating laboratories, with results stratified according to testing methodologies.Reagent Kits, Diagnostic: Commercially prepared reagent sets, with accessory devices, containing all of the major components and literature necessary to perform one or more designated diagnostic tests or procedures. They may be for laboratory or personal use.Immunoassay: A technique using antibodies for identifying or quantifying a substance. Usually the substance being studied serves as antigen both in antibody production and in measurement of antibody by the test substance.Laboratory Animal Science: The science and technology dealing with the procurement, breeding, care, health, and selection of animals used in biomedical research and testing.Indicators and Reagents: Substances used for the detection, identification, analysis, etc. of chemical, biological, or pathologic processes or conditions. Indicators are substances that change in physical appearance, e.g., color, at or approaching the endpoint of a chemical titration, e.g., on the passage between acidity and alkalinity. Reagents are substances used for the detection or determination of another substance by chemical or microscopical means, especially analysis. Types of reagents are precipitants, solvents, oxidizers, reducers, fluxes, and colorimetric reagents. (From Grant & Hackh's Chemical Dictionary, 5th ed, p301, p499)Microcomputers: Small computers using LSI (large-scale integration) microprocessor chips as the CPU (central processing unit) and semiconductor memories for compact, inexpensive storage of program instructions and data. They are smaller and less expensive than minicomputers and are usually built into a dedicated system where they are optimized for a particular application. "Microprocessor" may refer to just the CPU or the entire microcomputer.Time Factors: Elements of limited time intervals, contributing to particular results or situations.Biological Assay: A method of measuring the effects of a biologically active substance using an intermediate in vivo or in vitro tissue or cell model under controlled conditions. It includes virulence studies in animal fetuses in utero, mouse convulsion bioassay of insulin, quantitation of tumor-initiator systems in mouse skin, calculation of potentiating effects of a hormonal factor in an isolated strip of contracting stomach muscle, etc.Fluorometry: An analytical method for detecting and measuring FLUORESCENCE in compounds or targets such as cells, proteins, or nucleotides, or targets previously labeled with FLUORESCENCE AGENTS.Calibration: Determination, by measurement or comparison with a standard, of the correct value of each scale reading on a meter or other measuring instrument; or determination of the settings of a control device that correspond to particular values of voltage, current, frequency or other output.Image Cytometry: A technique encompassing morphometry, densitometry, neural networks, and expert systems that has numerous clinical and research applications and is particularly useful in anatomic pathology for the study of malignant lesions. The most common current application of image cytometry is for DNA analysis, followed by quantitation of immunohistochemical staining.Libraries, MedicalDatabases, Factual: Extensive collections, reputedly complete, of facts and data garnered from material of a specialized subject area and made available for analysis and application. The collection can be automated by various contemporary methods for retrieval. The concept should be differentiated from DATABASES, BIBLIOGRAPHIC which is restricted to collections of bibliographic references.Computer-Aided Design: The use of computers for designing and/or manufacturing of anything, including drugs, surgical procedures, orthotics, and prosthetics.Decision Support Systems, Clinical: Computer-based information systems used to integrate clinical and patient information and provide support for decision-making in patient care.Centrifugation: Process of using a rotating machine to generate centrifugal force to separate substances of different densities, remove moisture, or simulate gravitational effects. It employs a large motor-driven apparatus with a long arm, at the end of which human and animal subjects, biological specimens, or equipment can be revolved and rotated at various speeds to study gravitational effects. (From Websters, 10th ed; McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific and Technical Terms, 4th ed)Equipment Failure Analysis: The evaluation of incidents involving the loss of function of a device. These evaluations are used for a variety of purposes such as to determine the failure rates, the causes of failures, costs of failures, and the reliability and maintainability of devices.Artificial Intelligence: Theory and development of COMPUTER SYSTEMS which perform tasks that normally require human intelligence. Such tasks may include speech recognition, LEARNING; VISUAL PERCEPTION; MATHEMATICAL COMPUTING; reasoning, PROBLEM SOLVING, DECISION-MAKING, and translation of language.Proteins: Linear POLYPEPTIDES that are synthesized on RIBOSOMES and may be further modified, crosslinked, cleaved, or assembled into complex proteins with several subunits. The specific sequence of AMINO ACIDS determines the shape the polypeptide will take, during PROTEIN FOLDING, and the function of the protein.Pattern Recognition, Automated: In INFORMATION RETRIEVAL, machine-sensing or identification of visible patterns (shapes, forms, and configurations). (Harrod's Librarians' Glossary, 7th ed)Medical Laboratory Science: The specialty related to the performance of techniques in clinical pathology such as those in hematology, microbiology, and other general clinical laboratory applications.Efficiency, Organizational: The capacity of an organization, institution, or business to produce desired results with a minimum expenditure of energy, time, money, personnel, materiel, etc.Costs and Cost Analysis: Absolute, comparative, or differential costs pertaining to services, institutions, resources, etc., or the analysis and study of these costs.Solid Phase Extraction: An extraction method that separates analytes using a solid phase and a liquid phase. It is used for preparative sample cleanup before analysis by CHROMATOGRAPHY and other analytical methods.Clinical Laboratory Services: Organized services provided by MEDICAL LABORATORY PERSONNEL for the purpose of carrying out CLINICAL LABORATORY TECHNIQUES used for the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of disease.Microscopy: The use of instrumentation and techniques for visualizing material and details that cannot be seen by the unaided eye. It is usually done by enlarging images, transmitted by light or electron beams, with optical or magnetic lenses that magnify the entire image field. With scanning microscopy, images are generated by collecting output from the specimen in a point-by-point fashion, on a magnified scale, as it is scanned by a narrow beam of light or electrons, a laser, a conductive probe, or a topographical probe.Mass Spectrometry: An analytical method used in determining the identity of a chemical based on its mass using mass analyzers/mass spectrometers.Molecular Sequence Data: Descriptions of specific amino acid, carbohydrate, or nucleotide sequences which have appeared in the published literature and/or are deposited in and maintained by databanks such as GENBANK, European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL), National Biomedical Research Foundation (NBRF), or other sequence repositories.Syphilis Serodiagnosis: Serologic tests for syphilis.Microbiology: The study of microorganisms such as fungi, bacteria, algae, archaea, and viruses.Chromatography, High Pressure Liquid: Liquid chromatographic techniques which feature high inlet pressures, high sensitivity, and high speed.Culture Media: Any liquid or solid preparation made specifically for the growth, storage, or transport of microorganisms or other types of cells. The variety of media that exist allow for the culturing of specific microorganisms and cell types, such as differential media, selective media, test media, and defined media. Solid media consist of liquid media that have been solidified with an agent such as AGAR or GELATIN.Drug Discovery: The process of finding chemicals for potential therapeutic use.Base Sequence: The sequence of PURINES and PYRIMIDINES in nucleic acids and polynucleotides. It is also called nucleotide sequence.Medical Records Systems, Computerized: Computer-based systems for input, storage, display, retrieval, and printing of information contained in a patient's medical record.Medical Informatics: The field of information science concerned with the analysis and dissemination of medical data through the application of computers to various aspects of health care and medicine.Genetic Techniques: Chromosomal, biochemical, intracellular, and other methods used in the study of genetics.Proteomics: The systematic study of the complete complement of proteins (PROTEOME) of organisms.Laboratories, Dental: Facilities for the performance of services related to dental treatment but not done directly in the patient's mouth.Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay: An immunoassay utilizing an antibody labeled with an enzyme marker such as horseradish peroxidase. While either the enzyme or the antibody is bound to an immunosorbent substrate, they both retain their biologic activity; the change in enzyme activity as a result of the enzyme-antibody-antigen reaction is proportional to the concentration of the antigen and can be measured spectrophotometrically or with the naked eye. Many variations of the method have been developed.Models, Theoretical: Theoretical representations that simulate the behavior or activity of systems, processes, or phenomena. They include the use of mathematical equations, computers, and other electronic equipment.Computer Simulation: Computer-based representation of physical systems and phenomena such as chemical processes.United StatesDatabases, Genetic: Databases devoted to knowledge about specific genes and gene products.DNA: A deoxyribonucleotide polymer that is the primary genetic material of all cells. Eukaryotic and prokaryotic organisms normally contain DNA in a double-stranded state, yet several important biological processes transiently involve single-stranded regions. DNA, which consists of a polysugar-phosphate backbone possessing projections of purines (adenine and guanine) and pyrimidines (thymine and cytosine), forms a double helix that is held together by hydrogen bonds between these purines and pyrimidines (adenine to thymine and guanine to cytosine).Bacteria: One of the three domains of life (the others being Eukarya and ARCHAEA), also called Eubacteria. They are unicellular prokaryotic microorganisms which generally possess rigid cell walls, multiply by cell division, and exhibit three principal forms: round or coccal, rodlike or bacillary, and spiral or spirochetal. Bacteria can be classified by their response to OXYGEN: aerobic, anaerobic, or facultatively anaerobic; by the mode by which they obtain their energy: chemotrophy (via chemical reaction) or PHOTOTROPHY (via light reaction); for chemotrophs by their source of chemical energy: CHEMOLITHOTROPHY (from inorganic compounds) or chemoorganotrophy (from organic compounds); and by their source for CARBON; NITROGEN; etc.; HETEROTROPHY (from organic sources) or AUTOTROPHY (from CARBON DIOXIDE). They can also be classified by whether or not they stain (based on the structure of their CELL WALLS) with CRYSTAL VIOLET dye: gram-negative or gram-positive.Genomics: The systematic study of the complete DNA sequences (GENOME) of organisms.Tandem Mass Spectrometry: A mass spectrometry technique using two (MS/MS) or more mass analyzers. With two in tandem, the precursor ions are mass-selected by a first mass analyzer, and focused into a collision region where they are then fragmented into product ions which are then characterized by a second mass analyzer. A variety of techniques are used to separate the compounds, ionize them, and introduce them to the first mass analyzer. For example, for in GC-MS/MS, GAS CHROMATOGRAPHY-MASS SPECTROMETRY is involved in separating relatively small compounds by GAS CHROMATOGRAPHY prior to injecting them into an ionization chamber for the mass selection.Reference Values: The range or frequency distribution of a measurement in a population (of organisms, organs or things) that has not been selected for the presence of disease or abnormality.Immunoenzyme Techniques: Immunologic techniques based on the use of: (1) enzyme-antibody conjugates; (2) enzyme-antigen conjugates; (3) antienzyme antibody followed by its homologous enzyme; or (4) enzyme-antienzyme complexes. These are used histologically for visualizing or labeling tissue specimens.Fluorescence: The property of emitting radiation while being irradiated. The radiation emitted is usually of longer wavelength than that incident or absorbed, e.g., a substance can be irradiated with invisible radiation and emit visible light. X-ray fluorescence is used in diagnosis.Internet: A loose confederation of computer communication networks around the world. The networks that make up the Internet are connected through several backbone networks. The Internet grew out of the US Government ARPAnet project and was designed to facilitate information exchange.Pathology, Clinical: A subspecialty of pathology applied to the solution of clinical problems, especially the use of laboratory methods in clinical diagnosis. (Dorland, 28th ed.)Fluorescent Dyes: Agents that emit light after excitation by light. The wave length of the emitted light is usually longer than that of the incident light. Fluorochromes are substances that cause fluorescence in other substances, i.e., dyes used to mark or label other compounds with fluorescent tags.Biosensing Techniques: Any of a variety of procedures which use biomolecular probes to measure the presence or concentration of biological molecules, biological structures, microorganisms, etc., by translating a biochemical interaction at the probe surface into a quantifiable physical signal.Genotype: The genetic constitution of the individual, comprising the ALLELES present at each GENETIC LOCUS.Statistics as Topic: The science and art of collecting, summarizing, and analyzing data that are subject to random variation. The term is also applied to the data themselves and to the summarization of the data.Chromatography, Liquid: Chromatographic techniques in which the mobile phase is a liquid.Flow Cytometry: Technique using an instrument system for making, processing, and displaying one or more measurements on individual cells obtained from a cell suspension. Cells are usually stained with one or more fluorescent dyes specific to cell components of interest, e.g., DNA, and fluorescence of each cell is measured as it rapidly transverses the excitation beam (laser or mercury arc lamp). Fluorescence provides a quantitative measure of various biochemical and biophysical properties of the cell, as well as a basis for cell sorting. Other measurable optical parameters include light absorption and light scattering, the latter being applicable to the measurement of cell size, shape, density, granularity, and stain uptake.Research Design: A plan for collecting and utilizing data so that desired information can be obtained with sufficient precision or so that an hypothesis can be tested properly.Imaging, Three-Dimensional: The process of generating three-dimensional images by electronic, photographic, or other methods. For example, three-dimensional images can be generated by assembling multiple tomographic images with the aid of a computer, while photographic 3-D images (HOLOGRAPHY) can be made by exposing film to the interference pattern created when two laser light sources shine on an object.Fourier Analysis: Analysis based on the mathematical function first formulated by Jean-Baptiste-Joseph Fourier in 1807. The function, known as the Fourier transform, describes the sinusoidal pattern of any fluctuating pattern in the physical world in terms of its amplitude and its phase. It has broad applications in biomedicine, e.g., analysis of the x-ray crystallography data pivotal in identifying the double helical nature of DNA and in analysis of other molecules, including viruses, and the modified back-projection algorithm universally used in computerized tomography imaging, etc. (From Segen, The Dictionary of Modern Medicine, 1992)DNA, Bacterial: Deoxyribonucleic acid that makes up the genetic material of bacteria.Radioimmunoassay: Classic quantitative assay for detection of antigen-antibody reactions using a radioactively labeled substance (radioligand) either directly or indirectly to measure the binding of the unlabeled substance to a specific antibody or other receptor system. Non-immunogenic substances (e.g., haptens) can be measured if coupled to larger carrier proteins (e.g., bovine gamma-globulin or human serum albumin) capable of inducing antibody formation.Spectrometry, Mass, Matrix-Assisted Laser Desorption-Ionization: A mass spectrometric technique that is used for the analysis of large biomolecules. Analyte molecules are embedded in an excess matrix of small organic molecules that show a high resonant absorption at the laser wavelength used. The matrix absorbs the laser energy, thus inducing a soft disintegration of the sample-matrix mixture into free (gas phase) matrix and analyte molecules and molecular ions. In general, only molecular ions of the analyte molecules are produced, and almost no fragmentation occurs. This makes the method well suited for molecular weight determinations and mixture analysis.DNA Primers: Short sequences (generally about 10 base pairs) of DNA that are complementary to sequences of messenger RNA and allow reverse transcriptases to start copying the adjacent sequences of mRNA. Primers are used extensively in genetic and molecular biology techniques.