Wet Lab Accelerator: a web-based application democratizing laboratory automation for synthetic biology

Maxwell Bates, Aaron J. Berliner, Joe Lachoff, Paul R. Jaschke, Eli S. Groban

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)
30 Downloads (Pure)


Wet Lab Accelerator (WLA) is a cloud-based tool that allows a scientist to conduct biology via robotic control without the need for any programming knowledge. A drag and drop interface provides a convenient and user-friendly method of generating biological protocols. Graphically developed protocols are turned into programmatic instruction lists required to conduct experiments at the cloud laboratory Transcriptic. Prior to the development of WLA, biologists were required to write in a programming language called “Autoprotocol” in order to work with Transcriptic. WLA relies on a new abstraction layer we call “Omniprotocol” to convert the graphical experimental description into lower level Autoprotocol language, which then directs robots at Transcriptic. While WLA has only been tested at Transcriptic, the conversion of graphically laid out experimental steps into Autoprotocol is generic, allowing extension of WLA into other cloud laboratories in the future. WLA hopes to democratize biology by bringing automation to general biologists.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)167-171
Number of pages5
JournalACS Synthetic Biology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 20 Jan 2017

Bibliographical note

Copyright American Chemical Society 2017. Version archived for private and non-commercial use with the permission of the author/s and according to publisher conditions. For further rights please contact the publisher.


  • automation
  • autoprotocol
  • cloud-lab
  • democratization
  • scientific reproducibility
  • standardization
  • synthetic biology
  • Democratization
  • Automation
  • Scientific reproducibility
  • Standardization
  • Cloud-lab
  • Autoprotocol
  • Synthetic biology


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