2020 in Review


LabRoots has been an industry leader in the scientific, virtual learning space for more than a decade. When the novel coronavirus hit, LabRoots was uniquely positioned, with an already remotely working team, to offer customers an alternative to physical trade shows and events. Our knowledge and experience in the digital product market provided an opportunity to help companies, government agencies, and universities to seamlessly pivot to all things virtual with LabRoots produced Custom Virtual Events, Webinars, and other innovative digital products.

2020 Company Growth

The shift from physical to virtual has forced companies to reimagine how to market their products and how to conduct meetings in a new way. LabRoots position in the virtual space brought in a multitude of business across all product offerings, hosting more than 92 Virtual Events, compared to just 23 in 2019 and 1200+ Webinars, both standalone and within our custom events, compared to ~700 in 2019. 

With the increased need of virtually produced events and digital products, LabRoots has grown exponentially in multiple areas, including the number of employees. This year, the company hired more than 30 new employees, totaling 58 employees, to help with the increased workload across all departments. Since the company’s inception in 2008, all employees have worked remotely, so we are grateful to be able to increase the number of team members in an ever-changing economic environment.

Product of the Year: Custom Virtual Events

Hosted on a powerful virtual platform in HTML5 and fully supported on all mobile devices, the LabRoots Custom Virtual Events were the product of choice for not just companies, but also government agencies and universities alike. This product allowed for customers to design an event the way they want it, whether for a company division highlighting new products and research, vendor fair, national sales meeting, student symposium, or government organization, the Custom Virtual Events were designed to emulate a physical trade show or conference. 

As many companies’ products of choice, LabRoots successfully offered customers an innovative solution to highlighting new products with features such as virtual labs, with unique API connections, navigation videos, zoom chat rooms, multi-lingual events, and much more. For a more comprehensive look into some of the events and features offered this year, visit our 2021 media kit.

New Virtual Events

Coronavirus Virtual Event Series
April 2, 2020 | June 17, 2020 | September 17, 2020 | December 3, 2020
The outbreak of the coronavirus brought an onslaught of information, both true and false, surrounding the nature of the virus and the disease caused by it, COVID-19. LabRoots felt compelled to create an ongoing Virtual Event Series, inviting renowned academic and industry professionals from around the world to explore their research and findings in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic. The events have progressed naturally, with content showcasing the origin, structure, function and symptoms of the virus to transmission, testing, research and diagnostics, leading to the clinical manifestations of COVID-19, followed by prevention and containment of the disease. This free event series is an educational initiative to share information about the virus, keeping the scientific community well-informed throughout 2020 and into 2021 with upcoming events scheduled in April and October. 


  • The Origins of the virus
  • Testing, Research, and Diagnostics
  • Clinical Manifestations and symptoms of COVID-19
  • Prevention, Containment, and Transmission

Keynote Speakers

Stephen S. Morse, PhD, FAAM, F.A.C.E. – Professor of Epidemiology, Director, Infectious Disease Epidemiology Certificate, Columbia University, Mailman School of Public Health
Webinar Title: “Another New Coronavirus?: The Coronaviruses of the 21st Century”

Ashish K. Jha, M.D., M.P.H. – Dean, Brown University School of Public Health
Webinar Title: “The American Response to COVID-19: what went right, what went wrong”
As seen on CNN, MSNBC, and Fox, Ashish K. Jha, M.D., M.P.H. was at the front lines of the COVID-19 response, after leading groundbreaking research around Ebola. He’s professor of global health at the Harvard Chan School of Public Health and Director of the HGHI and works to understand the role of the US federal government in testing and other disease containment strategies, and how US federalism led to a diversity of responses and outcomes in this pandemic.

Ali H. Mokdad, PhD – Chief Strategy Officer, Population Health, University of Washington
Webinar Title:“IHME Covid-19 projections for the US: Strategies to reduce the spread”

Sumit Chanda, PhD – Director & Professor, Immunity & Pathogenesis Program, Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discovery Institute
Webinar Title: “Discovery of SARS-CoV-2 antivirals through large-scale repositioning studies”

Jürgen A. Richt, DVM, PhD – Regents Distinguished Professor at KSU, University Distinguished Professor, Director – Center on Emerging & Zoonotic Infectious Diseases (CEZID), NIH Center of Biomedical Research Excellence
Webinar Title: “SARS-CoV-2 Susceptibility, Transmission and Reinfection in Domestic Cats”

Jacqueline Fabius – Chief Operating Officer, Quantitative Biosciences Institute (QBI)
Nevan Krogan, PhD – Professor of Cellular and Molecular Pharmacology, UCSF, Principal Investigator, Gladstone Institute of Data Science and Biotechnology, Director of the Quantitative Bioscience Institute
Webinar Title: “The formation of an International Collaborative Network to find COVID-19 Therapeutics”

Monica Gandhi, MD, MPH – Professor of Medicine and Associate Chief, Division of HIV, Infectious Diseases, and Global Medicine, UCSF, Director, UCSF-Gladstone Center for AIDS Research (CFAR)
Webinar Title: “Facial Masking for COVID-19: Transmission, Severity and Immunity”

Matthew J. Memoli, MD, MS – Director, LID Clinical Studies Unit, Laboratory of Infectious Diseases, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, National Institutes of Health
Webinar Title: “Prevalence of SARS-CoV-2 Immunity in Those Undiagnosed with COVID-19 in the U.S.”

June 3, 2020
Considered to be one of the most promising areas of research in the world of anti-cancer therapeutics, the benefits of immuno-oncology have resulted in long-lasting tumor regression where surgery, radiotherapy, chemotherapy, and targeted therapy proved less effective. At LabRoots’ Immuno-Oncology Virtual Event, world-renowned researchers, doctors, and industry leaders were invited to present their findings surrounding immuno-oncology. 


  • Latest Trends in Immuno-Oncology
  • Immunotherapeutic Modalities
  • Development and Clinical Applications of Cancer Immunotherapies

Keynote Speakers

Stephen Hodi, MD – Director of the Melanoma Center and the Center for Immuno-Oncology, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School
Webinar Title: “Combinatorial Approaches to Immunotherapy: Melanoma as the Example”

Thomas M. Grogan, MD – Professor Emeritus of Pathology, University of Arizona; Founder and Chief Scientific Advisor Emeritus, Ventana Medical Systems, Inc., a division of Roche
Webinar Title: “The Importance of Tissue Chemistry in Immunity-Oncology”

Alexander David Borowsky, MD – Professor, Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, Center for Immunology and Infectious Disease and UC Davis Comprehensive Cancer Center
Webinar Title: “It is Time for TIME (Tumor Immune Microenvironment) in Experimental and Diagnostic Pathology”

Sumit K. Subudhi, MD, PhD – Assistant Professor, Genitourinary Medical Oncology, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center
Webinar Title: “Development of Rational Immunotherapy Combinations to Overcome the Immunosuppressive Prostate Tumor Microenvironment”

Opioid Crisis
November 5, 2020
The Opioid epidemic has been called the worst drug crisis in American history. At the Opioid Crisis Virtual Event, attendees were invited to learn about how the crisis is being handled, including medications being used to treat opioid use disorder, crisis response from both a healthcare and police view, and much more.


  • Medications for Opioid Use Disorder  
  • Stigma Surrounding Opioid Use Disorder
  • Informatics and Opioid Stewardship
  • Health System Delivery of Opioid Use Disorder Treatment

Keynote Speaker

Professor Bertha Madras (the Honorable) – McLean Hospital and Harvard Medical School
Webinar Title: “The Opioid Crisis: Made in America…Fade in America”

Panel Presentation: The NIH HEAL Initiative: A Bold Interagency Response to the Opioid Crisis
Rebecca G. Baker, PhD – Director, NIH HEAL Initiative, Office of the Director, National Institutes of Health
Linda L. Porter, PhD – Director, Office of Pain Policy, National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke
Jack B. Stein, PhD – Director, Office of Science Policy and Communications; Chief of Staff, National Institute on Drug Abuse

Introducing Virtual Weeks

LabRoots has found in past years that some of our individual virtual event topics encompassed multiple scientific genres, therefore, in 2020 we opted to combine similar content into multidisciplinary Virtual Weeks. 

Genetics Virtual Week – April 21-23, 2020
Genetics and Genomics, Molecular Diagnostics, Precision Medicine


  • Genome Editing
  • The Evolution of Genome Reference Concepts
  • Single Cell and Spatial Genomics
  • Structural Variation
  • Human Genomic Evolution
  • Point of Care Testing
  • Emerging Technologies in Molecular Diagnostics
  • Artificial Intelligence
  • Rare Disease in Precision Medicine
  • Precision Medicine in Clinic
  • Molecular Profiling – from Bench to Bedside

Keynote Speakers

Michael Snyder, PhD – Stanford Ascherman Professor, Chair of Genetics Director of the Center of Genomics and Personalized Medicine
Webinar Title: “Individualized Health”

David Smith, PhD – Professor and Consultant, Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathology, Mayo Clinic
Webinar Title: “The Massively Parallel Sequencing (MPS) Revolution”

Kris C. Wood – Assistant Professor, Department of Pharmacology and Cancer Biology, Duke University
Webinar Title: “Systematic identification of therapeutic strategies that leverage tumor evolution”

Microbiology Virtual Week – September 8-10, 2020
Immunology, Infectious Disease, Influenza, Microbial Communities, Modeling Approaches


  • Plant Response to Disease
  • Bacterial Immunologies
  • Vertebrate Adaptive Immune Systems
  • Immunopathology
  • Virology
  • Antimicrobial Resistance
  • Point of Care Diagnostics
  • Novel Respiratory Virus Vaccines
  • Genomics of Respiratory Viruses
  • Microbiome-Based Diagnostics and Therapeutics
  • Evolution and Heterogeneity within Biofilms and other Microbial Communities
  • Multi-level Omics Data Integration
  • Machine-learning approaches (identifying and characterizing unannotated genes from the bacterial genomic ‘dark matter’)
  • Predicting Pathogen Evolution

Keynote Speakers

Gael Kurath, PhD – Research Virologist, Fish Health Section, USGS Western Fisheries Research Center
Webinar Title: “Evolution of host-specific virulence in an RNA virus of Pacific salmonid fish”

K. Eric Wommack – Fellow American Academy for Microbiology, Deputy Dean and Assoc. Dean for Research & Graduate Education, College of Agriculture & Natural Resources, University of Delaware
Webinar Title: “Squeezing out understanding from sequences: Genome to Phenome Connections in Viruses of Microbes”

K. Leigh Greathouse, PhD, MPH, MS, RD – Assistant Professor, Baylor University
Webinar Title: “Discovery of a gene-microbiome interaction in lung cancer: lessons learned and future directions”

James Crowe, M.D. – Director, Vanderbilt Vaccine Center
Webinar Title: “Human Monoclonal Antibodies for Emerging Agents”

Detlef Weigel, Executive Director – Max Planck Institute for Developmental Biology
Webinar Title: “Causes and consequences of immune gene diversity in plants”

Barney S. Graham, MD, PhD – Deputy Director, Vaccine Research Center, Chief, Viral Pathogenesis Laboratory, NIAID (National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases)
Webinar Title: “Structure-based Vaccine Design for COVID-19 and other Respiratory Viruses”
Barney S. Graham, MD, PhD led the team responsible for the first COVID-19 vaccine that entered clinical testing on behalf of the NIH.

Jesse D. Bloom, PhD – Associate Professor, Fred Hutch Cancer Research Center, Investigator, Howard Hughes Medical Institute
Webinar Title: “Single-cell virus sequencing of influenza infections that trigger innate immunity”

Peter Palese, PhD – Professor and Chair Department of Microbiology, Professor in Department of Medicine and Infectious Diseases, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai
Webinar Title: “A Universal Influenza Virus Vaccine”

Notable Speakers

LabRoots was pleased to welcome some of the most world-renowned scientists across a variety of scientific genres as keynote and featured speakers at this year’s LabRoots’ hosted virtual events. Below we have highlighted some of the over 400 speakers that joined us this year for our virtual events. 

Neuroscience, March 11, 2020
Walter Koroshetz, MD – Director, National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke
Webinar Title:“The BRAIN Initiative and its Promise for the Treatment of Neuro/Mental/Substance Abuse Disorders”
For the second year, LabRoots hosted speakers and investigators from around the world at the Neuroscience Virtual Event, presenting their research within The NIH BRAIN Initiative, including the Director of the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, Walter Koroshetz, MD, and 13 panel presentations encompassing Brain Function: In Health and In Disease 

Coronavirus, April 2, 2020
Linfa Wang, PhD – Professor & Director, Emerging Infectious Diseases Program, Duke-NUS Medical School, Singapore
Webinar Title: “From Hendra to Wuhan: emerging bat-borne viruses in a quarter of century”

Adolfo Garcia-Sastre, PhD – Professor, Departments of Microbiology and Medicine, Tisch Cancer Center Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai
Webinar Title:“Insights into SARS-CoV-2 Biology”

Forensic Sciences, May 6, 2020
Henry C. Lee, PhD – Chia Professor, University of New Haven Chief Emeritus (ret.), Connecticut State Police Director, Research & Training Center
Webinar Title: “Pattern Evidence Reconstruction”
Henry C. Lee, PhD is one of the world’s foremost forensic scientists and a landmark in criminal investigations, such as the O.J. Simpson and JonBenét Ramsey cases.

Laboratory Automation & Informatics, May 20, 2020
Abraham P. Lee – Professor, Biomedical Engineering, University of California, Irvine Director, NSF I/UCRC Center for Advanced Design & Manufacturing of Integrated Microfluidics (CADMIM), Lab On A Chip Journal
Webinar Title:“Bridging Multiscale Physiological Systems via Microfluidics- from single cell to tissue-scale to organ-scale”

Cell Biology, September 23, 2020
Steve Caplan, PhD – Professor and Vice Chair for Administration, Dept. of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Director, UNMC Advanced Microscopy Core Facility, Research Institute-Program Coordinator
Webinar Title: “Sorting out the mechanisms of endocytic recycling”
Steve Caplan, PhD is a well-known writer and a recognized authority in endosome dynamics.

CRISPR, September 30, 2020
Shondra Miller, PhD/Director – Assistant Member, Center for Advanced Genome Engineering (CAGE), St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, Department of Cell and Molecular Biology
Webinar Title: “Functionalizing Genome Editing Techniques on a Broad Range of Cellular Targets”

Cancer Research & Oncology, October 7-8, 2020
Dr. James Porter – Director, Robotic Surgery, Providence St. Joseph Health Care System and Swedish Medical Center
Webinar Title: “Retroperitoneal Robotic Partial Nephrectomy for Renal Cell Carcinoma”
Dr. James Porter is the most experienced laparoscopic and robotic surgeon in the Pacific Northwest and has performed over 4,000 robotic procedures. He also developed the retroperitoneal approach for robotic renal surgery and pioneered retroperitoneal lymph node dissection for the treatment of testicular cancer.

Cancer Research & Oncology, October 7-8, 2020
Vipul Patel, MD – Medical Director, AdventHealth Global Robotics Institute, Medical Director, AdventHealth Cancer Institute Urologic Oncology Program, Professor of Urology, University of Central Florida
Webinar Title: “Robotic Radical Prostatectomy: Lessons learned from 14,000 cases”
Vipul Patel, MD is the most experienced robotic surgeon in the world and has personally performed nearly 14,000 robotic prostatectomies for the treatment of prostate cancer. He leads one of the world’s most experienced robotic surgery teams and travels around the world to educate physicians and care for patients and is world-renowned for his contribution to the field of robotic surgery and prostate cancer.

Cancer Research & Oncology, October 7-8, 2020
Steven R. Patierno, PhD – Deputy Director, Duke Cancer Institute, Professor of Medicine, Professor of Pharmacology and Cancer Biology, Professor of Family Medicine and Community Health, Duke University Medical Center
Webinar Title: “RNA Splicing and Ancestry-related Molecular Targets in Precision Oncology and Cancer Disparities”
Steven R. Patierno, PhD was the Vivian Gill Distinguished Professor of Oncology, and Professor of Pharmacology, Physiology and Urology at the GWU School of Medicine and Health Sciences, and served as Executive Director of The George Washington University Cancer Center for ten years prior to moving to Duke in 2012.

Additional Notable Event Topics

  • Drug Discovery & Development, Feb. 26, 2020
    • New Practices in Early Phase Drug Discovery
      • CRISPR-Cas9 as a Drug Discovery Tool
      • Organ-on-a-Chip and 3D Cultures in Screening
    • Advancement of Biomarkers in Drug Development
  • Neuroscience, March 11, 2020
    • NIH BRAIN Initiative: A Multidisciplinary Approach to Neuroscience
    • Understanding the Scourge of Neurodegenerative Diseases and Dementia
    • Behavioral and Psychiatric Disorders
  • Cannabis Sciences, March 25, 2020
    • Medical Cannabis: Therapeutic Updates
      • Clinical Experiences: Physicians share real-world patient responses to medical cannabis
    • Regulatory Landscape – Beyond the US
      • How Regulations Impact Healthcare and Quality of Life
    • Evolving Laboratory Landscape >>
      • Future of Testing for Rare Cannabinoids, Terpenes and Flavonoids
  • Cell Biology, September 23, 2020
    • Exosomes
    • Cell Biology of Cancer
      • Spatial Omics
  • CRISPR, September 30, 2020
    • Development and Classification of CRISPR Systems
      • New candidates of CRISPR systems 
      • Genetic drift and regulation of CRISPR systems
    • CRISPR Applications in Biomedicine and Agriculture
    • CRISPR for Addressing COVID-19 Pandemic
      • CRISPR for COVID-19 diagnostics
    • Ethical, Social, and Legal Issues in CRISPR applications
  • Cancer Research & Oncology, October 7-8, 2020
    • Health Disparities: How Cancer Impacts the Underrepresented and Underserved
    • Molecular/Genetic Guidance Versus Standard of Care
    • The Role of Evolution in Drug and Radiation Resistance of Cancer  
    • The latest in Immunotherapy and Other Novel Cancer Therapeutics 
  • Analytical Chemistry & Separation Sciences, October 21, 2020
    • Analytical Techniques for Biopharmaceuticals
    • Analytical Techniques for Environmental and Food Testing
  • Clinical Diagnostics & Research, Nov. 12, 2020
    • Advances in Diagnostics Technologies
      • Proteomics
    • Leveraging Laboratory Data
    • Considerations for Specific Patient Populations
    • Laboratory Stewardship and Patient Safety

Webinar/Virtual Event Testimonials (“What the users are saying…”)

LabRoots’ most successful year to date, 2020 invited a whole new array of attendees and clientele to participate in webinars and virtual events, resulting in lots of positive feedback and testimonials about the virtual experiences. We have compiled a case study for a more comprehensive look at one client’s experience working with LabRoots, which can be viewed by clicking here. 


Drug Discovery & Development 2020
Drug Discovery & Development 2020
Cannabis Sciences 2020

“Labroots’ virtual conferences have allowed my teams to participate in first rate conferences on their own schedule without the need for travel for years.  As a presenter, they have refined their platform to the point where the technology is simple to use and reliable with highly experienced people to help me.  Now that we are in the time of the pandemic, this had made LabRoots even more vital to sharing information and continuing education in my field and they are an outstanding resource for all of us.” Matthew Flegal, Senior Manager InVivo Sciences, Charles Rivers Laboratories

“While we are living with and in a new pandemic, COVID-19, other infectious diseases have not ceased to exist causing widespread morbidity and mortality. It is important not to forget these “old” infectious diseases and even consider the possibility that the “old” and “new” pathogens together will be responsible for complex clinical outcomes and further put pressure on our health care system. LabRoots’ platform will provide us with a comprehensive picture of what is going on in the field and how we can try to protect us from these disease-causing pathogens.” Peter Palese, Professor & Chair Dept. of Microbiology, Professor, Dept. of Medicine and Infectious Diseases, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai

“The North American 3Rs Collaborative, the UK’s National Centre for the 3Rs (NC3Rs) and New Jersey Association for Biomedical Research (NJABR) have partnered with LabRoots, and would like to thank the amazing speakers, held in high regard for their expertise, for sharing practical considerations in preclinical research and development. LabRoots has brought excellent meetings in the past, and this year more than ever, we appreciate LabRoots for offering an opportunity to engage with our colleagues using this unique and robust virtual platform” Natalie Bratcher, 3Rs Scientific Liaison and Animal Welfare Specialist, AbbVie’s Office of Global Animal Welfare and past President of the North American 3Rs Collaborative  

“This year’s Brain Initiative track will showcase the power of combining diverse expertise and teamwork in tackling some of the most challenging areas of contemporary neuroscience research. We are excited to feature through LabRoots the breadth of expertise of our early-career scientists and representative collaborative projects that tackle the circuit basis of behavior, cell diversity, resource development, and human neuroscience. Through Labroots’ virtual environment, we are able to feature the team neuroscience approach that can often be difficult to showcase through usual channels including conferences.”  Karen K. David, Ph.D., Program Director, BRAIN Initiative

Speakers and Clients

“The event we created with Lab Roots exceeded every expectation, both within our organization and from our attendees. The feedback was focused on the unbelievable level of engagement we were able to create in the virtual world, as well as the ease of use in navigating the site (conference environment). We could not have done this without the support of the unbelievable team at LabRoots and fully expect to continue offering virtual events with them as a part of our future event schedule” – Andrew Singer, Vice President, Global Marketing and Operations Sales Bode Technology

“We exceeded our stated G&Os from overall event attendance and the number of marketing qualified leads generated.” – Kevin Sheehy, Director of Global Events, Nanostring


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Warren McCarthy
  • “I am thrilled to be the recipient of the LabRoots Spring 2020 Scholarship and I can hardly contain my excitement! I would like to express my utmost gratitude to the LabRoots Scholarship board for advocating for my success. I intend to use this very generous scholarship to continue my academic pursuits with aims toward becoming an M.D. PhD in the field of orthopedic surgery. Thank you for helping alleviate the costs of education and again for advocating for my success in my academic pursuits with this scholarship!”
  • Blog (LINK)
Martina Ysabel Miranda
  • “I would like to express my utmost gratitude to everyone at LabRoots for their endless largesse. It is because of these opportunities that I can pursue my goals of being a geneticist and give back to not only my community here in the United States but also have my efforts extend to elevating the quality of STEM education in my home country.”
  • Blog (LINK)

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