Newswise — Oak Brook, IL (USA) — The Society for Laboratory Automation and Screening (SLAS) announced the annual winners of its two signature exhibitor awards, the SLAS Ignite Award and the New Product Award, given out during SLAS2021 Digital, January 25-27. This year, the 10th Annual SLAS International Conference and Exhibition was rebranded to SLAS2021 Digital and was held entirely online due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. More than 200 exhibitors participated in the virtual exhibition.

The SLAS Ignite Award, sponsored by Beckman Coulter Life Sciences, recognizes one outstanding company exhibiting within Innovation AveNEW, the specially designated area for start-ups and emerging companies within the conference’s virtual Exhibition. This year’s winner, Artificial, Inc. (Palo Alto, CA, USA), received a $5,000 cash award and will be a featured presenter at the first annual SLAS Ignite Showcase on March 2. In addition, Artificial, Inc. received a $5,000 cash prize from Pistoia Alliance (in collaboration with SLAS) and an invitation to present at their President’s Start-up Challenge event this fall.

The New Product Award is given to up to three companies showcasing new products that are commercially available within 90 days pre- and post-conference. Products are evaluated by a judging panel both online and onsite at the companies’ exhibit booths. Winning products are granted use of the New Product Award designation for a year and the award is promoted through SLAS. This year cytena, a CELLINK company; OrganoTherapeutics and Solentim were selected as the top winners out of 11 SLAS New Product Award finalists and 24 entries from around the globe.  

Cytena, a CELLINK company, was selected for UP.SIGHT, an automation system designed to minimize labor-intensive processes and maximize efficiency within cell line development. It combines CELLINK’s single-cell dispensing technology with a superfast imaging system that provides a fullwell image without the need for stitching. This feature enables nozzle imaging and 3D full-well imaging leading to a probability of >99% for clonality. cyntena, a CELLINK company is based in Boston, MA, USA.

OrganoTherapeutics (Esch-sur-Alzette, Luxembourg) submitted their human-specific mini-brains that are used in the discovery and development of effective drug candidates targeting Parkinson’s disease. New molecules can be screened on these mini-brains, which mimic the human Parkinson’s disease pathology with the goal of developing new therapeutics to treat Parkinson’s disease.

Finally, the ICON system by Solentim is the world’s first benchtop system for characterizing high-productivity clones to aid in the discovery of new cell-based therapies. The ICON system was developed to help scientists gain a better focus on cloning by shortening workflow timelines and enhancing research data, in turn, creating better targeting outcomes. Solentim is based in Wimborne, UK.

In addition, five exhibitors received Summa Socius recognition for their financial contributions to the SLAS International Conference and Exhibition. They are: Hamilton Company – OEM Components, Beckman Coulter Life Sciences, Thermo Fisher Scientific, PerkinElmer and Agilent Technologies, Inc. Sixty-two exhibitors received Legacy Award recognition for their participation in all 10 conferences, starting before the merger of Association for Laboratory Automation and the Society for Biomolecular Sciences as SLAS in 2011.

The SLAS International Conference and Exhibition is an annual event showcasing the world’s leading life sciences research and innovative laboratory technologies. This year, more than 3,500 scientists, academicians, technology providers and business leaders attended the annual conference in a virtual setting. The innovative online program focused on life sciences discovery and technology and featured a virtual exhibition with more than 200 companies from around the world. SLAS members played a key role in the response to the COVID-19 pandemic, developing diagnostics and laboratory testing facilities, and contributing to vaccine development and data analysis worldwide. 


SLAS (Society for Laboratory Automation and Screening) is an international professional society of academic, industry and government life sciences researchers and the developers and providers of laboratory automation technology. The SLAS mission is to bring together researchers in academia, industry and government to advance life sciences discovery and technology via education, knowledge exchange and global community building.


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