Once Mixtures is enabled for your tenant, you will need to configure Mixture-specific schemas in the Registry prior to beginning to use Mixtures in the platform. When creating a new entity schema with Mixtures enabled, you will see a new Mixture option in the Entity Type dropdown.
Configuring Mixtures in the Registry
You will need to create at least three schemas for Mixtures to effectively work in Benchling.
The schemas outlined below is one recommendation of how to configure Mixtures. Depending on your specific needs, an alternate design may work better for your organization. At the most basic level, you will need two Mixture schemas and one other schema type (could be custom entity or other) that you will categorize the ingredients of your mixtures.
Please note, it is necessary to have parent-child entities enabled on your tenant to get full functionality of Mixtures in Benchling. If you are interested in enabling child entities, contact your Customer Success Representative.
A Recipe schema will capture the list of ingredients and their respective ideal quantities for a mixture. This will have an Entity Type of Mixture. The ingredients and respective quantities in the Recipe schema should represent the theoretical mixture that will be used to make a preparation of a mixture in lab. For example, HBS Buffer could be a Recipe.
Build a new schema called Recipe
Entity Type: Mixture
Add relevant metadata fields that you would like to track against a theoretical mixture Recipe, such as:
- Expected Recipe characteristics, such as pH range or osmolarity (floating point / integer)
- Associated experiment type (Dropdown)
A Preparation schema will capture the list of ingredients and their actual quantities used by scientists in lab to create the mixture. This will have an Entity Type of Mixture. The ingredients and respective quantities in the Prep schema should represent what was actually used to make a preparation of a mixture in lab. For example, HBS Buffer (made 11-20-2020) could be a Preparation.
Build a schema called Preparation
Entity type: Mixture
Check the Allow recording measured values for ingredients box directly below the Entity Type field. This setting enables users to log the actual quantities of ingredient used when making a prep of a mixture in lab.
Create a metadata field called Recipe. Make the field format an Entity Link to the Recipe schema. Check the boxes for the Required column and the Parent Link column.
Add other relevant metadata fields that you would like to track against a specific preparation of a mixture, such as
- Expiration Date (Date)
- Description (Text)
- Final pH value (Floating point)
Note: It is recommended to name Recipe and Preparations similarly. To have Benchling do this automatically and systemically, use a naming template.
Select Create a Naming Template on the Preparation Entity Schema page
Define a desired naming template, such as Recipe - Recipe Lot Number to create Preparations with names such as Samplerecipe-001, Samplerecipe-002, and so on. For example, if you made a Saline prep, and then made a PBS prep, and then made another Saline prep, they would be named Saline-001, PBS-001, Saline-002, respectively.
A Components schema will be used to log the specific ingredients and components that can be used in mixtures. This will have an Entity Type of Custom Entity. For example, NaCl and deionized water could be Components.
It is important to note that, though you can create a component-specific schema, you are also able to use entities of existing schemas as ingredients in your recipes. For instance, if you already have a schema for stock chemicals, you can use those entities as ingredients. You can also use entities from different schemas as components.
Build a schema called Components:
Entity type: Custom Entity
Add relevant metadata fields that you would like to track against an ingredient, such as Vendor (Text / Dropdown) and CAS # (Text)
Note: catalog # and lot text can be recorded within the Mixtures feature itself and do not need to be included as metadata fields.You can import components in bulk following instructions in this help article
Registering New Mixtures
A. In the UI, register new entities under the Components entity schema. These entities will represent the ingredients used in Recipe entities.
Navigate to the Registry > ‘+’ > Entity from Schema > Component. For example, if you typically use DMEM and FBS to create some cell culture media, DMEM and FBS would be registered as entities under the Components schema
All ingredients for all Recipe entities should be captured as entities under the Components entity schema
B. Register a new Recipe entity under the Recipe entity schema. Add the ingredients used in the recipe (the registered Components entities) within the Components section of the Metadata tab of the Recipe entity.
Navigate to the Registry > ‘+’ > Mixture > Recipe
Navigate to the Components section of the Metadata tab > ‘+’ > Add the relevant Component entities previously registered
Record the Catalog # for each Component, the Target Amount that is recommended when making the Recipe, and add Units using the dropdown
C. Register a new Preparation entity under the Preparation schema. Fill in the Recipe Entity Link field with the Parent Recipe.
Navigate to the Registry > ‘+’ > Click Mixture > Preparation
Specify the Recipe that you will be following to create this Preparation
Specify the total quantity of the preparation you would like to make using the Target Amount field
- In the Prep Ingredients table, see that all components were automatically hoisted by Benchling from the values specified in the Parent Recipe entity
- All component quantities and units were hoisted and calculated by Benchling from the specified Parent Recipe entity and the specified Target Amount
In the Prep Ingredients table, select Edit to update fields related to each component
- Use the Measured Amount field to record the actual quantities of each component that was added to the mixture preparation
- Use the Lot Text field to include information on the lot number of the specific component being used for the mixture preparation
- Use the Note field to include any other desired information
Recording Mixture Preparations in the Notebook
When creating mixture preparations that are relevant to an experiment or specific entry, you can record the mixture preparation directly in the Notebook. Please see this help article for information on how to use our Mixture Prep tables in Notebook entries.