Laboratory Information Management System (LIMS)

1.1 Basic Concepts

Simply put, laboratory information management system (LIMS) is a computer software and hardware system that manages all kinds of information through computer network technology. That is, the organic combination of computer network technology and modern management ideas, the use of data processing technology, mass data storage technology, broadband transmission network technology, automated instrument analysis technology, to the laboratory information management and quality control and other comprehensive management of the computer software and hardware system, in order to meet the laboratory management of various objectives (planning, control, execution).

1.1.1 Classification

By function, LIMS can generally be divided into two categories:

The first type is pure data management, the main functions of this type of LIMS software generally include: data collection, transmission, storage, processing, mathematical statistics analysis, data qualified or not automatic judgment, output and release, report management, network management and other modules. But its function is simple and easy to implement.

The second category is the comprehensive management of the laboratory, which in addition to the functions of the first category, also adds the following management functions: Sample management, resources (materials, equipment, spare parts, fixed assets management, etc.) management, affairs (such as workload statistics and salary bonus management, documents and archives management) management and other modules, formed a complete set of laboratory comprehensive management system and inspection work quality monitoring system. Its function is more comprehensive, in addition to the strict management and control of test data, but also to meet the daily management requirements of the laboratory; The network structure is correspondingly more complex, more difficult to achieve, the investment is relatively large, and often requires professional units and laboratories to cooperate in development and design.

1.1.2 Research object

The main research object is the law of information in laboratory management activities and the method of auxiliary management with computer and network technology. The main research content is how to use computer and network technology to realize the whole process of information processing.

Specifically, it includes four aspects: 1. Research on information needs; 2. Research on information flow process and amount of information; 3. Study on the structure of LIMS; 4. Research on main design tools.

1.1.3 Basic Features

LIMS is designed around laboratory management objectives;

Structured decision support for LIMS;

Data centralized and unified management;

Analysis, prediction and control functions;

The system view.

1.1.4 LIMS and management software

As an information management system, LIMS has similarities with management software such as ERP and MIS. For example, it supports enterprises or units to manage operation and production reasonably and systematically through modern management mode and computer management information system, maximizing the role of existing equipment, resources, people and technology, and maximizing economic benefits.

However, it is also different from enterprise management software. First of all, LIMS, as a laboratory management software, has standards that can be followed. Its system design must strictly follow international and national laboratory requirements. The enterprise management software such as ERP and MIS has no corresponding standard to execute, which makes the ERP and MIS of different users can have huge differences. Secondly, LIMS can not only provide a management platform for the laboratory, but also provide more help to improve the operation efficiency and academic level of the entire laboratory. Modern instruments are intelligent and highly automated, which allows laboratory personnel to manipulate instruments through LIMS, greatly improving work efficiency.

1.1.5 Development history

The development of LIMS can be generally divided into the following stages: the embryonic stage (the late 1960s - early 1970s is the embryonic stage, which is the generation period of LIMS design ideas, and the data management of the laboratory is still in the manual recording stage.) ; Commercialization period (This era of computer language and network technology is not developed enough, the price of computers is more expensive, the need for professional technicians to write and maintain programs.) ; Functional perfection period - the rise of networked products.

2.1 Architecture

Web server as the center, using a three-layer architecture to achieve, namely: interface, business and data three functional levels.

Using the three-layer architecture model to realize LIMS, the interface layer and the business layer of the system are separated from each other. No matter the change of the interface layer or the change of the business layer, it can do not affect each other. Therefore, it is conducive to the maintenance and function expansion of the system, and enhances the flexibility of the system. The business logic is implemented in the application server instead of on each client. At the same time, the access to data can only be carried out through the application server, which enhances the security of the system and realizes the "thin client". The data required by the client can be pre-processed or fully processed on the application server, and the processing result is sent to the client to reduce network traffic.

2.2 Basic Operating Environment

2.2.1 Software Environment:

① Server operating system: Windows NT Server, UNIX, LINUX, etc. Databases: MSSQL Server, SYSBASE, ORACLE, etc. ② Workstations Windows 98, Windows 2000, Windows XP, etc.

2.2.2 Hardware Environment:

Equipment such as servers, PCS, printers and uninterruptible power supplies can be configured according to the size of the unit laboratory.

2.3 System network structure

The laboratory and all its instruments and equipment are distributed in various buildings within a unit. The topology of the network is generally star-type Ethernet, with a 100Mbps rate Ethernet card network, with the current level of technological development, the unit can fully achieve more than 100M connection bandwidth. Therefore, various devices in the laboratory can be connected to network devices at various levels through network cables, and then connected to the server. Between the network equipment and the laboratory instrument equipment, it is also necessary to arrange the relevant analytical instrument data interface.

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