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April 22, 2022 | Biomolecular

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qPCR analysis can be a complex and cumbersome process, particularly when comparing  results across many samples or biological groups. Fortunately qPCR software development has come a very long way, and it’s worth thinking seriously about which options can streamline and improve your analysis.

Read on for key features to look for, how our own software performs, and how you can test it out for free.

A shopping guide & feature list for qPCR software

There are dozens of qPCR software options available, including a number of open source options. As you consider and compare different qPCR software types, consider the following features and functions.

Check for MIQE compliance

The Minimum Information for Publication of Quantitative Real-Time PCR Experiments (MIQE) guidelines are designed to promote consistency and transparency between labs, and improve the integrity of scientific publications. The XML-based markup language RDML is a recommended element in these guidelines.

Many of the available analysis software options use their own file formats, while only a small number allows you to export using the standardised data exchange format RDML. Our own

Consider supported analysis types

If you’re likely to be running different tests or assays, then it’s essential to consider how well any chosen qPCR software will support various analysis types. Bio Molecular System’s software, for example, runs:

  • Relative Quantification, incorporating the REST algorithm
  • Absolute Quantitation, including Standard Curve
  • High Res Melting
  • Genotyping
  • Allelic Discrimination
  • Identifier analysis

As just one example, this video shows just how easy it is to conduct gene expression using Mic and Myra. 

Factor in ease of analysis

A selected software might tick all of the features and analysis types you require, but ease of use is also an essential factor to check for. You may have various technicians working in a lab, and the more intuitive the software is the gentler the learning curve will be. Being able to view results both numerically and graphically makes it simpler to spot outliers, patterns and differences between samples.

Consider time-saving factors

Any time saved on qPCR data analysis is time you can spend elsewhere in the lab or compiling your final findings. Invaluable time-saving features can include data transfer between your liquid handling robot and cycler, as well as real-time results for smaller runs. Read on below for more on how this works in practice with our own Myra and Mic software.

Check you can generate relevant reports

As you consider any qPCR data analysis option, consider whether you’ll be able to configure and produce reports in the format and detail required by your lab and projects. It should be easy to select certain report contents and export report files to print, email or share as needed. Being able to do so in a variety of file formats including PDF, Excel and comma-separated-value (CSV) format will provide flexibility in the long term.

Ask about software support

qPCR analysis software solutions can range from the free to the highly priced, but be sure to choose an option with the documentation and support to make the most of the software. Not only will this make any troubleshooting simpler, it can also equip your lab users with full confidence in using the system. If in doubt, it’s invaluable to be able to pick up the phone and speak to someone who knows the system inside and out.

The must-have features of Mic PCR software

Our data analysis software, designed to be used with the Mic magnetic induction cycler and Myra liquid handling system, is unlike any other software available on the market. This software is:

  • Integrated, creating seamless flow between sample preparation and processing
  • Simple and modern in its design with intuitive controls, and
  • Flexible across multiple runs, instruments and assays.

In particular, here are the features that support fast yet advanced statistical analysis for quantitative polymerase chain reaction processes.

Transfer data instantly from Mic

Forget double-handling sample information between steps, because our ecosystem seamlessly links automated liquid handling and cycling. Simply configure samples and assays, layout your deck and start Myra and Mic. With this integrated system, data is more accurate without the risk of transfer errors. There’s one setup, one screen, and the software continually verifies that setup details are consistent.

Import data from multiple qPCR machines

If you’ve been looking for a PCR detection system that allows you to compare and quantify results across multiple qPCR machines, this is it. In fact, you can connect up to 10 Mic runs via Bluetooth and analyse up to 480 samples into one analysis. Mic’s magnetic induction technology produces unrivalled accuracy and reproducibility between samples, runs and instruments to deliver peace of mind as you analyse results.

Analyse data in real time

If you’re in a busy lab you’ll know that time can be of the essence when it comes to interpreting data. Mic’s software delivers results with detailed statistical analysis as soon as each run has completed. It’s entirely possible to complete separate runs at different times and compile results as you need them: eliminating the need to wait and batch samples into larger well runs. During a COVID-19 testing trial of Mic cyclers at Qudos Bank Arena, 15,000 samples were processed in six days – including 4,300 samples within one day. Most importantly, positive samples were able to be detected and confirmed within 2.5 hours of sampling.

Download and test drive our qPCR software for yourself

We’d love you to test drive our qPCR analysis software in your own lab, and it’s free to do so. Simply register your interest, and we’ll send you a link to download your copy. Bio Molecular Systems also offers free in-lab demo periods for our compact and flexible Mic and Myra systems with CE-IVD and TGA approval. To arrange a demo and find your nearest distributor, contact our team today.