Tip #1: Hints and tips on creating ID numbers
- Pad number with zeros: JMCS ID numbers are sorted alphabetically (because they are a combination of numbers and letters). Thus, for example, if you have mouse IDs M1, M2, M3…. M11, M12. JCMS will sort these as M1, M11, M12, M2, M3. This sort order is not what you would expect based on the numerical values imbedded in the strings. If the numbers are recorded with padded zeros, they well sort correctly. For example: M00001, M00002, M00003… M00011, M00012 will sort correctly.
- Creating unique mouse Identifiers: JCMS requires that each mouse ID be unique in the database. There are numerous approaches, here’s just one suggestion for labs that ear-notch their mice.
Create your mouse ID using a strain code, mating ID, litter ID, and ear notch number. This will always be unique. For example:
In this example, we use 16 characters (the max currently allowed) to record our mice in JCMS. It is easy to see that the mouse is from the strain coded by “AD,” and the mating 45 and litter 4501. The ear notches are the last numbers in the ID string. You can drop the strain code and the numbers are still guaranteed to be unique. Note that each number has zero padding to allow for that numerical field to grow in digits and continue to sort correctly.
Tip #2: Help loading legacy data into JCMS
- Bulk loading legacy data: Bulk loading legacy data can be tricky, but here is an excel worksheet-tool you can download. The worksheet has a mouse table template (WORKSHEET 1), field descriptions (WORKSHEET 2), and instructions for loading your data (WORKSHEET 3). This worksheet will guide you through loading mouse records. If you need to load genotype data you will do that in a second load using the JCMS genotype loader. Creating mating and litter connections for all the bulk loaded mice gets very complex and is not covered in this simple worksheet.
Tip #3: Considerations on how to work cage-card bar codes provided by your institution into JCMS
- Using the pen name field to store bar-code ID provided by your institution: Some institutions provide bar-coded cage cards that are required to be used in the mouse room. You can still use JCMS but you will put the bar code number into the pen name field. The JCMS cage ID numbers will still be used and available for printing on cards if you like.
Tip #4: Creating multi user configurations using share folders
- The JCMS user guide has instructions for setting up your configuration. Follow these instructions carefully. In addition you need to install OCX controls on each client. The best way to install the OCX controls is to download this installer (msi file) and run it on each client.