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David Suzuki

Signs For Lab Safety

Energy Efficiency & Technology squeeze the carbon bubble

Damage-free signage for research labs

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THE DEFINITIVE SOURCE FOR LAB PRODUCTS, NEWS AND DEVELOPMENTS

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SEEING THE

UNSEEN With light a million times brighter than the sun


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CONTENTS 9 ENERGY EFFICIENCY AND TECHNOLOGY BY DAVID SUZUKI

Squeeze the carbon bubble.

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CANADIAN LIGHT SOURCE

BY TINA HUFF

Customizable signs in minutes for vital interim life safety measures

BY JANA MANOLAKOS

Seeing the unseen with light a million times brighter than the sun

STANDARDS EDITOR’S note 5 CANADIAN news 6 WORLDWIDE news 7 LAB ware 20 MOMENTS in time 22

DAMAGE-FREE SIGNS FOR RESEARCH LABS

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Do the flip

A closer look at the companies that provide raw material for stem cell research CANADA NEWS

Investigating proteins as predictive biomarkers 6

David Suzuki

Signs For Lab Safety

Energy Efficiency & Technology squeeze the carbon bubble

Damage-free signage for research labs

8

8

SUZUKI matters

THE DEFINITIVE SOURCE FOR LAB PRODUCTS, NEWS AND DEVELOPMENTS

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July/August 2018

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NEWSMAKER

Alli Murugesan: bringing new ideas to market faster 15

JULY/AUGUST 2018

MOMENTS IN TIME

Samuel Weiss opens our understanding of the brain’s potential 18

JULY/AUGUST 2018

Championing the Business of Biotechnology in Canada

STEM

SEEING THE

UNSEEN

ECONOMICS 101 A closer look at companies that supply stem cell research

With light a million times brighter than the sun

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On the shoulders of

giants W

hen asked about that “eureka” moment, most researchers will tell you there’s no such thing. There’s no single moment, but rather a series of incremental, sometimes almost imperceptible points of clarity that lead to the realization science has moved forward. As Sir Isaac Newton is believed to have said, “If I have seen further than others, it is by standing upon the shoulders of giants.” Perhaps the original – and even more appropriate comment, comes from the 12th century theologian John of Salisbury who wrote in 1159 that, “We are like dwarfs sitting on the shoulders of giants. We see more, and things that are more distant, than they did, not because our sight is superior or because we are taller than they, but because they raise us up, and by their great stature add to ours.” Nothing rings more true when you consider today’s phenomenal discoveries. Gigantic strides in research have led to such things as lab grown organ-like structures that mimic the onset of brain cancers; electron guns that let scientists observe the first natal breaths of newborn piglets with light that’s a million times brighter than the sun; and lab-on-a chip technology that supports healthcare in remote regions of the planet. And while truly spectacular, these singular moments in science represent the outcome of hundreds, if not thousands of years of discoveries that have gone before. As much as we like to tout new developments as “revolutionary” – the truth is the process is more evolutionary. There’s no big bang here at the juncture of technology and creativity. It’s more like one spark igniting another. Scientific discovery is not a finite Jana Manolakos process. These revelations are the giants that future researchers will stand upon. GUEST CONTRIBUTOR

email: biond@publicationpartners.com

JESMAR COMMUNICATIONS INC. Publisher of LAB BUSINESS Magazine BIO BUSINESS Magazine Printed in Canada

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Canadian NEWS New machine-led clinical tool for cancer care in Ontario

Mobile lab-on-a-chip enables remote access to diagnostic tests

Medical Lab society launches one-stop safety resource webpage

A digital microfluidic chip designed for the MR (Measles Rubella) Boxes. (Credit: Lisa Ngo)

Ziliomics Inc., a start-up created by the Fight Against Cancer Innovation Trust (FACIT) to manage the development and commercialization of bioinformatics software tools, has received seed financing from the Prospects Oncology Fund for its Heliotrope platform. Driven by the growth of artificial intelligence in healthcare, Ziliomics develops web-based, modular software platforms that help physicians make treatment decisions for patients living with cancer. Its lead software product, Heliotrope, was developed by a team of informatics and genomics experts at the Ontario Institute for Cancer Research. The product combines machine-led, human verification processes to interpret vast amounts of genomic data and contribute to improved treatment decisions.

The Canadian Society for Medical Laboratory Science has launched a new webpage as a single-point of access to a broad range of laboratory safety information and news. Safety Central is a user-friendly web page with navigation that easily and quickly guides readers to points of interest. Among the features, users can access resources from the Public Health Agency of Canada, podcasts and free courses from the Canadian Centre for Occupational Safety and safety articles at csmls.org/safety-central.aspx.

New assays support earlier diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease

The US FDA has granted breakthrough device designation to two Roche in vitro diagnostic immunoassays. Elecsys® ß-Amyloid (1-42) CSF and Elecsys® Phospho-Tau (181P) CSF are for the measurement of ß-Amyloid and Phospho-Tau concentrations in cerebrospinal fluid in adult patients with cognitive impairment who are being evaluated for Alzheimer’s disease (AD) and other dementias. They offer an earlier diagnosis to traditional cognitive testing for AD which is largely based on clinical symptoms, at a point when the disease has already advanced. Measuring biomarkers with CSF immunoassays, increases certainty of diagnosis of AD and can help evaluate the progression of the disease. 6

July/August 2018 LAB BUSINESS

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team of researchers from the University of Toronto are thinking outside of the box in developing a portable, reconfigurable lab-on-achip diagnostic platform – a digital microfluidic system for serological immunoassays in remote settings. Dubbed the MR Box – the system is about the size of a toaster oven. A droplet of blood is placed onto a microchip and then inserted into the ‘box’ for analysis. The platform is currently configured to test for measles and rubella, two devastating diseases that affect hundreds of thousands of individuals worldwide each year, although new chips are being developed for different markers and diseases like Zika and malaria. The team field-tested the system at the Kakuma refugee camp, in northwestern Kenya – inhabited by more than 180,000 individuals displaced by war and persecution. After a massive public-health immunization campaign, they tested hundreds of children and their caregivers at the camp for the presence of molecular markers indicating disease immunity, and sent the samples to the Kenyan Medical Research Institute  national laboratory in Nairobi for validation. “We found that our low-cost device matched the international laboratory-standard reference tests of the Kenyan Medical Research Institute for 86 per cent of measles samples, and 91 per cent of rubella samples,” says Darius Rackus, one of the lead researchers. “Our platform is inexpensive, fast and flexible — there’s nothing like it out there. We see it as a powerful tool for public health workers on the front lines, who have no access to health records, or may be dealing with humanitarian emergencies.” Since the trip to Kakuma, the team has taken MR Boxes for additional testing in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. They hope that in the future, with simple statistical analyses, this point-of-care system could be used to monitor the levels of immunity within dynamic populations, helping prevent outbreaks before they happen. “If you could distribute these devices at airports or points of entry around the world, they could become a powerful tool for disease surveillance and monitoring,” adds Rackus. “They also have the potential to significantly reduce the burden on expensive and sophisticated diagnostic labs that currently do all these epidemiological tests.”


Worldwide NEWS

Growing brain cancer in a dish enables researchers to identify new therapies

Germany’s TOP 100 recognizes measurement instruments leader

Krüss GmbH has been being recognized as one of Germany’s TOP 100 Top-Innovators. The 220-year-old German company produces instruments for measuring surface and interfacial tension, used wherever fluids come into contact with solid objects, like in aircraft and automotive construction when bonding components. Among many patents, Krüss’ latest is a "Liquid Needle", a groundbreaking technology that eliminates the use of needles when dispensing drops during measuring operations. Their equipment control software was also well received and resulted in a spin-off distribution company.

6 patents granted for platform that isolates rare circulating tumor cells

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esearchers at the Institute of Molecular Biotechnology of the Austrian Academy of Sciences (IMBA) have developed lab grown organ-like structures that mimic the onset of brain cancers such as glioblastoma, one of the deadliest forms. With these neoplastic cerebral organoids, researchers hope to study the complex biology of human brain tumors and pave the way for new medical applications. Because of the molecular characteristics of the human brain, it has been very difficult for scientists to find a suitable model organism to study brain cancers. The organoids faithfully reproduce unique aspects of the human brain, such as its diverse cell types and the stages by which it develops. This method allows researchers to replicate the process of brain carcinogenesis and study brain cancer onset already at its early stages. They can watch the brain-organoid grow a tumor in a dish and observe changes in the miniature tumors, identifying new markers that may help in diagnosing the disease. “For the first time, we established a human model for brain cancer to rapidly test or screen for the tumorigenic potential of gene mutations found from cancer genome sequencing projects,’ says Shan Bian, postdoctoral researcher at IMBA and first author of the study. “Using genome-editing techniques, we introduced clinically-relevant mutations into the cerebral organoids. With this method, we are trying to mimic the brain tumor onset in vivo by only mutating a very small population of cells.” Once a tumor has developed, the scientists can target a specific mutation to determine whether the defect is also essential for the long-term survival of the tumor. Any change that causes it to shrink or disappear makes a good candidate for future therapies. The scientists tested this principle by applying a drug called  Afatinib, which is currently being used in clinical trials as a treatment for glioblastoma. They found that after 40 days, administration of the drug significantly reduced the number of tumor cells in two combinations of mutations, but not in the third or in cells with too much MYC, a type of regulator gene.  Afatinib inhibits a molecule called EGFR – which is specifically over-expressed in those two types of tumors. When testing four additional EGFR inhibitors used in therapies, a drug called Erlotinib significantly reduced the number of tumor cells as well, while the effects of others were minimal. IMBA is now seeking additional clinical partnerships to help advance the study.

CellMax Life has been granted six U.S. patents for its biomimetic platform CMx, which detects circulating tumor cells (CTC) in a 2 ml sample of blood. The patents cover the entire detection workflow, from the capture of very rare CTCs present at fewer than five cells per billion normal cells in early stage cancer, to the processes ensuring their intact release and identification by means of advanced imaging techniques, allowing CellMax Life to detect CTCs in up to 90 percent of samples. The CellMax CMx platform involves capturing CTCs as the 2 ml sample of blood passes through a microfluidic chip with patented surface coating, a biomimetic structure that mimics the human cell surface membrane. In addition to six U.S. patents, CellMax also has 16 global patents issued and several additional patents pending in its growing portfolio.

Trials on topical treatment for actinic keratosis conclude successfully

Two parallel trials of a first-in-class topical treatment for actinic keratosis, a pre-cancerous skin condition resulting in patches of thick, scaly, or crusty skin, have met their primary endpoint of complete clearance of the lesions at day 57 of treatment. The studies achieved statistical significance and represent a collaboration between two pharmaceutical companies, Almirall and Athenex. The two organizations entered into strategic partnership in December 2017 to further develop and commercialize the KX2-391 treatment in the United States, Europe and Russia. Projected peak sales for KX2-391 are expected to be in excess of €250 million. www.labbusinessmag.com

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Suzuki MATTERS

BY DAVID SUZUKI WITH CONTRIBUTIONS FROM SENIOR EDITOR IAN HANINGTON

ENERGY EFFICIENCY AND TECHNOLOGY SQUEEZE THE CARBON BUBBLE

T

Dr. David Suzuki is a scientist, broadcaster, author, and co-founder of the David Suzuki Foundation. Ian Hanington is Senior Editor, David Suzuki Foundation. Learn more at www. davidsuzuki.org. 8

he carbon bubble will burst with or without government action, according to a new study. That will hurt people who invest in fossil fuels. As energy efficiency and renewable energy technologies improve and prices drop, global demand for fossil fuels will decline, “stranding” new fossil fuel ventures — likely before 2035, according to the study in Nature Climate Change, “Macroeconomic impact of stranded fossil fuel assets.” Researchers from Cambridge University and elsewhere found technological advances will strand fossil fuel assets regardless of “whether or not new climate policies are adopted,” but that “the loss would be amplified if new climate policies to reach the 2 C target of the Paris Agreement are adopted and/or if low-cost producers (some OPEC countries) maintain their level of production (‘sell out’) despite declining demand.” That could “amount to a discounted global wealth loss of US$1–4 trillion,” and Russia, the U.S. and Canada could see their fossil fuel industries nearly shut down, the report says. The best way to limit these negative impacts is to divest from fossil fuels and speed up the transition to a diversified, energy-efficient, clean-energy economy. Investing tax dollars to expand fossil fuel development and infrastructure, including pipelines, is irresponsible and incompatible with Canada’s Paris Agreement commitments, putting everyone at economic risk, and leaving us with polluted air, water and land, and increasing climate impacts and health-care bills. Lead author Jean-François Mercure told the Guardian, “With more policies from governments, this would happen faster. But without strong [climate] policies, it is already happening. To some degree at least you can’t stop it. But if people stop putting funds now in fossil fuels, they

July/August 2018 LAB BUSINESS

may at least limit their losses.” Co-author Jorge Viñuales said, “Individual nations cannot avoid the situation by ignoring the Paris agreement or burying their heads in coal and tar sands.” Researchers found that while the shift from fossil fuels to conservation and clean energy is moving quickly enough to strand fossil fuel assets, it’s not happening fast enough to keep global average temperature from rising more than 2 C above pre-industrial levels. That will require concerted action from governments worldwide to meet and exceed Paris Agreement commitments. One often overlooked factor is efficiency. A study in Nature Energy found energy efficiency improvements could limit global warming to 1.5 C above pre-industrial levels — the aspirational Paris Agreement target. Many experts have suggested limiting warming to that degree would require large-scale bioenergy deployment (burning forest and plant products for energy) and negative emissions technologies (removing CO2 from the air and storing it on land, underground or in the oceans). But many of those technologies haven’t been tested on a commercial scale, and burning biomass creates pollution and affects land use, habitat and food production — and the new report says warming could be limited without them. According to a Carbon Brief article, researchers used integrated assessment models to determine how improving energy efficiency in the global north and south could help limit warming to 1.5 C while fulfilling international sustainable development goals, including “zero hunger,” “good health and wellbeing” and “affordable and clean energy” for all. Technological and social innovation at the consumer and industrial level, including “the spread of digital services in the global south and the rise of vehicle-sharing in the global north” would fuel most improvements. Measures like getting people to reduce or eliminate meat from their diets would also be necessary, as far more energy and land are required to raise and produce meat than fruits and vegetables. Although the report offers hope, our best bet for avoiding the worst effects of a warming planet is to do everything we can at all levels of society and government: conserve energy, shift to clean energy, protect and restore green spaces, reduce meat consumption, improve women’s rights and family planning to stabilize population growth, increase infrastructure for transportation alternatives to the private automobile, divest from fossil fuels and hold politicians to account for credible climate policies. The world is changing in response to serious energy challenges. We can take advantage of the growing economic opportunities and benefits to human health, ecosystems and the climate or we can keep extracting, selling and burning fossil fuels while the world warms. The choice is obvious.” LB


Lab PROFILE

LIGHT I

n Saskatoon, they say that when your dog runs away, you can watch him run for days. In the vast golden plain of the Canadian prairies, the distance would reduce him to nothing more than a spot on the horizon. But what if there was a light beam trained on your dog that was so powerful it could interact with the molecules in every follicle of his tail from miles away? With one of the world’s most advanced generators of synchrotron light, The Canadian Light Source (CLS) is a multi-million dollar national research facility at the University of Saskatchewan in Saskatoon that delivers forms of light so powerful they let researchers observe the interplay of molecules in material that is exponentially smaller than your dog in the distance. “The light we generate ranges anywhere from infrared and visible ultraviolet to X-rays,” says Jeff Cutler, its Chief Strategic Relations Officer. With a PhD in physical chemistry from Western University, he is no stranger to the facility, having been involved with it when planning first began in the mid-90s. He left shortly thereafter, returning in 2000. “They broke ground in late 1999 and user operations started in 2005.” The number and variety of experiments here are astonishing, capturing new knowledge in nanotechnology, micro-manufacturing, environmental science, agriculture and the health and life sciences, and in the process giving rise to an impressive list of discov-

Seeing the unseen with light a million times brighter than the sun STORY BY

Jana Manolakos

eries – new drugs, effective motor oils, better computer chips, a cleaner environment and more. “On any given day, you can have a team looking at pharmaceutical research in one part of the building and another group just down the hall working on aircraft material while still others are doing mining research. It really is an enabler of almost every sector of importance to Canada. I always say that working here is the coolest science job in the country because it touches on so many different areas,” Cutler says. At roughly the size of a football field, the building houses a 103-metre booster ring and 171-metre storage ring within a cavernous hall of instruments, work sta-

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Lab PROFILE

the building houses a 103-metre booster ring and 171-metre storage ring within a cavernous hall of instruments

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July/August 2018 LAB BUSINESS

tions, and miles of electrical wires and cables. Two storeys below ground sits a massive electron gun. It’s one of the reasons the facility is licensed by the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission. In 1964, there was an old nuclear physics lab here – the Saskatchewan Accelerator Laboratory, known around the campus as SAL, Cutler recalls. “It was a facility dedicated to nuclear physics where they slammed charged particles into various materials to look at nuclear processes using an electron gun. We are still using that same electron gun as a source of electrons for the synchrotron itself. That was part of the reason that Saskatoon was picked as the site because of the expertise and the fact that this electron gun already existed.” This equipment forms part of a complex technological space in which charged particles or electrons, are taken almost to the speed of light and bent through magnets causing them to radiate a range of wave lengths of light through ‘beamlines’. “Think about the old incandescent light bulbs,” Cutler says. “You have that glowing hot filament at the centre of the tube boiling off all sorts of electrons – it’s the same sort of idea here. We heat up a piece of tungsten; make it very hot, about 1,000 C. It glows. We suck those electrons off, and accelerate them towards the speed of light. When it comes out of our electron gun, it’s going about 99.9995 per cent of the speed of light.” But that’s not fast enough he says. So it goes from the linear accelerator to a booster ring inside the bigger storage ring. That booster ring then takes those electrons and “gives them a further kick in the pants” as Cutler puts it, where a radio frequency cavity increases their velocity to about 99.999998 per cent of the speed of light, travelling around the ring 1.5 million times in 0.6 seconds – fast enough to reach the moon in one second. And that’s the


Lab PROFILE

energy researchers are looking for. “It then transitions from the booster ring into that bigger, outer storage ring and once there, the electrons circulate for about eight to 12 hours, before we have to add more,” he says. “Every time they are bent they give off light – every time they give off light, a researcher is doing an experiment.” The facility currently has 22 funded beamlines and experimental stations, and there are more to come. Here scientists can choose a specific wavelength of light and then measure the light as it interacts with the sample. The beams are 106 times brighter than the sun and 1010 more intense than conventional X-rays. More than 1,000 researchers from around the world use its beamlines every year. To date, it has hosted in excess of 13,614 visits by scientists from 32 different countries and across Canada. “The ring runs 24 hours a day, five days a week,” Cutler says. “Groups of scientists come in with a box full of samples. We’ll train them on the use of an experimental station or the beam line they’ll need for the research. And once they are comfortable using the equipment we leave them up to their work, unless they ask us to work more closely with them.” About one fifth of the 250 employees at the facility have earned PhDs in several fields, Cutler says. “We are expert in the tool and in understanding what the

results are showing. With researchers coming from universities, industries and government as well as the private sector, our job is to help them get the most from their data.” One of these experts is T.K. Sham, Canada Research Chair in Materials and Synchrotron Radiation and recipient of the Order of Canada for his synchrotron research and development. Renowned in Canada’s synchrotron community, Sham was on the team that developed and presented the proposal which led to the creation of the Saskatoon facility in 2001. “My current research at CLS involves studies of energy materials and devices, cultural and heritage materials, bio and environmental materials and advance X-ray spectroscopy and imaging techniques,” Sham says. He is also beam leader for three of the CLS beamlines, acquiring their funding and development. Among the three beamlines, the high resolution spherical grating monochromator (SGM) longwavelength X-ray is particularly useful for studying chemical properties such as nitrogen in a cow’s digestive tract, oxides in new paints, and sodium ion batteries. Another of the three, the variable line spacing plane grating monochromator (VLS-PGM) beamline can show what happens when surfaces meet, providing information on such nanostructures as those in motor oil used as lubricants.

The third, the soft X-ray microcharacterization beamline (SXRMB), was used in understanding such things as the most efficient ways for batteries to run, how catalysts work, soft tissue distribution in the brain, as well as the behaviour of phosphorus in soil and fertilizers. In a recent study Sham found that calcium silicate hydrate nanospheres, a chemical compound commonly found in cement, was able to deliver pain relieving ibuprofen directly to bones. Sham and his colleagues applied X-ray absorption spectroscopy to track drug loading, unloading and the fate of the drug carrier in simulated body fluid, on an atomic level. “We also used a nano X-ray beam to image the loading and unloading of an individual drug carrier the size of hundreds of nanometers,” he says. Advanced medical imaging at the CLS is used in understanding everything from

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Lab PROFILE

A typical hospital X-ray tube puts out about 1010 photons per second onto a target. The synchrotron can generate up to 1020. bone structures to diseases like cystic fibrosis and tuberculosis. Unlike hospital CT scans however, where the machine rotates around the body, the CLS’ X-ray tube is stationery. “RMD Engineering worked with us to build systems that move things as big as a horse,” Cutler says. “It spins them 360 degrees at 10 revolutions per second and moves them in one-micron steps for novel imaging.” The advantage with the synchrotron is that it creates a range of wave lengths and its X-rays are millions of times brighter than a hospital source. A typical hospital X-ray tube puts out about 1010 photons per second onto a target. The synchrotron can generate up to 1020. It allows scientists to see much finer detail and be able to perform dynamic studies that look at things in real time. Australian researchers used this to their advantage when they looked at the very first breaths taken by newborn rabbits. Watching their lungs fill, they were able to observe how fluids flowed out and the alveoli (air sacs) filled. “They could see those biological processes which you can’t see directly in a hospital environment,” Cutler says. The results helped improve birthing protocols in some Australian hospitals. The CLS is currently involved with several international groups; working with Sweden on the design of a new machine at that country’s MAX IV synchrotron, the Diamond Light Source in Oxfordshire, UK as well as Japan’s synchrotron radiation facility SPring-8. “These are international partnerships where we are reaching out to learn from each other,” Cutler says. “We are also associated with Canada’s Protein Industries Supercluster and are involved in some of the aerospace activities in Quebec with CARIC (the Consortium for Aerospace Research and Innovation in Canada).” Although the majority of users are already familiar with CLS, twice a year the facility holds an open call for new proposals for experimental time. ”The majority of our users – 65 to 70 per cent – are academic peer reviewed and ‘intent-to-publish’ scientists from other organizations. We charge them a minimum amount to use the facility.” A quarter of the run time is also purchased by private sector companies. It’s welcome revenue for the not-for-profit facility. With an annual operating budget of $30 to $35 million, other funding comes from sources like the Canada Foundation for Innovation, Canada’s Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council, the Canadian Institute of Health Research, and the Government of Saskatchewan. Cutler acknowledges that support from the Canadian government has been critical for the success of the CLS and other research platforms like McMasters Brockhouse Institute for Materials Research, SNOLAB in Sudbury, and TRIUMF in British Columbia. “These large national science facilities keep Canada positioned as a world leader and not just a buyer of technology. If Canada wants to be at the leading edge, in such areas as clean tech, oil recovery, and next generation aerospace materials, Canada needs to leverage these large national science investments.” LB

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Application NOTE

DAMAGE-FREE SIGNS FOR RESEARCH LABS

Customizable signs – printed with laser or ink jet printers in minutes for vital interim life safety measures – can be removed cleanly from most surfaces, reducing repair and repainting

STORY BY

Tina Huff

T

hroughout hospitals and research labs, signs are used virtually everywhere from the front door to research and test areas, to the routes and maps for emergency exits. Signs are used in many ways, whether informal, formal, or mandated by law, and vital interim life safety signage can often be required. Permanent signs may not be an option when the information changes and needs to be updated. This can occur when policies and procedures change or during community events, such as volunteer orientation and open houses. “In hospitals, temporary signs are used for directional navigation, identifying rooms and escape routes, as well as to provide warnings and precautions about various hazards,” says M. Geary, an EHS manager at a university hospital. “This is particularly important when any construction, remodeling, or refurbishing is occurring.” Safety notifications, including emergency contacts and potential hazards may also change frequently in research labs, particularly at universities where these may change as often as every semester when new projects may commence. In such temporary situations, the traditional signage options for administrators and facility managers are limited. Because

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Application NOTE

the ideal solution would be signage that is easy to install, durable enough to endure harsh conditions, yet comes off easily when necessary, leaving no trace.

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July/August 2018 LAB BUSINESS

signs can be located in high traffic areas and subjected to harsh cleansers, the sheets of paper, cardstock, sheet protectors, laminated sheets, and posters used must not only present a professional image, but also stand up to the environment and even meet specific safety codes. This is where the problem lies. Since many signs are not designed for high traffic use, they may not look professional or be resistant to wear and tear from frequent touching, handling, or the cleansers used in such environments. As a result, they are damaged easily and must be replaced frequently. Many signs can also cause considerable damage to the underlying surfaces when taped, tacked, nailed or screwed to walls, glass, or equipment, which can hasten the need for costly repair and repainting. Sign removal can also leave behind unsightly residual tape or adhesive. This is exacerbated when signs include information that is routinely changed or updated. With premature facility repair and wall repainting costing thousands of dollars in annual maintenance, the ideal solution would be signage that is easy to install, durable enough to endure harsh conditions, yet comes off easily when necessary, leaving no trace. This can significantly reduce the need for facility maintenance, freeing up resources for higher priority purposes. Commercial-grade labels used as signage must be more durable than those used in a lower use area, but also should remove cleanly when they need to come down. The key to accomplishing this was developing an adhesive that holds well but can be removed when needed. Achieving that balance is harder than it sounds. As a result, an exclusive, proprietary product was created specially engineered to stick securely yet remove cleanly without damage or residue from painted walls, doors, windows, furnishings, equipment, and other interior surfaces. These “labels used as signs� are made of durable, commercial-grade material that resists water, chemicals and even abrasion. Available in a variety of sizes, they print easily on standard laser or inkjet printers, opening a world of possibilities for custom, do-ityourself signs. Unlike standard office labels with a paper substrate, the topcoat of the commercial-grade sign labels is waterproof and chemical resistant, while its polyester substrate is a durable, scuff and tear-resistant film. These qualities are ideal for safety-related signage mandated by regulation or required by administrative policy. “We do a lot of interim evacuation routes in our hospital and have to post temporary signs along these


Although standardized safety signs can be purchased out of catalogues, there is often a need to modify or customize mandated signage as conditions or formats change.

routes,” says Geary. “Whenever you change exit routes, due to construction or other reasons, you have to train staff and post appropriate signage identifying the new routes. The removable Surface Safe sign labels are perfect for this. They are also useful in the clinics as door postings to notify personnel to take necessary precautions, such as when a patient is TB positive.” Such removable signage is also helpful in meeting required standards at a reasonable cost for temporary projects. “We are able to create customized ANSI standard signage using the labels – for example, a Notice sign above pull stations while a building fire system is being repaired,” says Geary. “A custom sign like that could cost about $40 each. For one time temporary projects, it would be much better to simply print it on demand at a lower cost.” The removable signage is also helpful in lab settings, particularly those that change frequently. According to Geary, the OSHA Laboratory Safety Standard requires safety notifications, including emergency contacts and potential hazards at the entry to a lab as part of the Hazard Communication to ensure anyone enter-

ing is informed of the risks and wears necessary personal protective equipment (PPE). “The removable signs are great for posting in areas with high lab turnover, or short term projects, particularly university or R&D labs,” says Geary. “Because the people and the chemical hazards change frequently in such settings, using a permanent sign is not practical.” Administrators, facility managers, and safety officers will also want signs compliant with safety and standards regulations. Although standardized safety signs can be purchased out of catalogues, there is often a need to modify or customize mandated signage as conditions or formats change. On-demand printing solutions, however, have traditionally required a large upfront investment of thousands of dollars, including a specialized sign and label printer, software, labels, and ribbons. In response, industry innovators have developed a simplified, flexible approach using standard laser and ink jet printers. The company’s free online Design and Print Software enables customizable

Application NOTE

printing utilizing OSHA/ANSI compliant templates. Research lab staff can create and print their own informal, formal, or compliant labels from pre-designed templates or create them step-by-step on demand at a desk or service counter. Most find the process intuitive, since it resembles creating an office document from pre-designed templates. “Now we print the removable labels on demand in whatever format we need,” says Geary. “They stick securely on every surface in our facility including paint, drywall, windows, wood, plastic, and metal. Because they peel off cleanly without leaving any residue, we can even reuse them as well.” With the variety of signage used throughout research labs, the ability to conveniently print new sign labels in minutes and cleanly remove the old will go a long way toward keeping the whole medical research community safely up to date and professional looking without the hassle, mess or cost. LB Tina Huff is Group Product Manager at Avery Products Corporation. For more information about Surface Safe Sign Labels, visit www.Avery.com/signs

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Lab WARE COMPACT REFRIGERATORS ENABLE ENERGY-EFFICIENT STORAGE

Thermo Fisher Scientific’s new TSG Series of refrigerators were designed to provide uninterrupted temperature stability and clean room compatible readiness for reliable storage of the most sensitive materials such as vaccines, medicines, lab kits and breast milk. The systems also offer whisper quiet operation at less than 35 dbA, ideal for placement in clinical laboratories, nurse’s stations and even patient rooms and intensive care units, without disrupting the work environment and patient comfort. The TSG Series refrigerators consume significantly less energy than similar models, making it possible to meet the sustainability objectives in a clinical setting and reducing operating costs. The systems feature fewer refrigeration components compared to other available units, requiring minimal maintenance and offering increased storage capacity. www.thermofisher.com

NEW KIT ENABLES RAPID DETECTION OF CANDIDA AURIS

Bruker’s new Fungiplex Candida Auris is a research-use-only, real-time PCR assay and kit for the detection of Candida auris in hospital hygiene applications. A fungal pathogen, C. auris is relatively easily transmitted in hospitals through contaminated surfaces or equipment, raising a need to rapidly identify sources of contamination and enable infection control measures. The Fungiplex Candida Auris kit is an effective epidemiological tool for monitoring hospital environments, and a research tool for investigating patient colonization. The Fungiplex™ family of tests can be run on multiple real-time PCR platforms under identical conditions, in a user-friendly format, with results reported in less than two hours from DNA extraction. www.bruker.com

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July/August 2018 LAB BUSINESS

NEW EXTENSION OF OMNIS PLATFORM FROM METROHM

IMAGING CAMERAS DESIGNED TO OPERATE IN VACUUM

Princeton Instruments is launching two new large-format in-vacuum CCD cameras engineered specifically for direct detection in VUV, EUV , and x-ray imaging applications from ~10 eV to 30 keV. The PIMTE3 cameras were designed for applications such as x-ray microscopy, x-ray spectroscopy, x-ray phase contrast imaging, x-ray diffraction, deep-UV lithography, and semiconductor metrology. An offset CCD detector provides close acces to samples for small-angle x-ray scattering (SAXS) and lowgrazing-incidence applications. PI-MTE3 2048B and 4096B camera models utilize 2k x 2k (30.7 mm x 30.7 mm) and 4k x 4k (61.4 mm x 61.4 mm) backilluminated CCDs, respectively, to offer >95% peak quantum efficiency. Due to their fourport readout architecture, these new, low-noise, 16-bit cameras provide frame rates up to 7x to 10x higher than previousgeneration two-port cameras. www.princetoninstruments.com

Metrohm recently announced the extension of its OMNIS titrator platform to include a fully integrated solution for moisture analysis and water content determination with volumetric Karl Fischer titration. The OMNIS platform handles chemicals in a closed system, eliminating contact with reagents and solvents. Water content determination starts automatically with sample injection and the fully automated system discards used samples after measurement and immediately prepares the cell for the next measurement. The entire hardware is graphically represented in the user interface and custom systems can be configured with drag and drop icons using desktop software or a touch screen interface. This extension of the OMNIS platform, which was first released in 2016, will include Karl Fischer moisture measurements. www.metrohm.com


Lab WARE NEW PUMP OFFERS MULTIPLE MOUNTING OPTIONS

Wilden’s new 6 mm (1/4 inch) Velocity Series AODD pump features the industry’s first detachable mounting foot, making it an ideal solution for small-dosing applications. The Wilden V2550 Velocity Series pump can quickly and easily be reoriented by loosening a single screw. The pump is designed to provide the user with multiple mounting options, eliminate the effects of torque decay, and delivers improved dry suction lift at all operating parameters for better priming under a wide variety of system conditions. Wilden Velocity Series pumps can handle suction lifts from 10-14 feet. These pumps are available in polypropylene and PVDF construction, as well as an Accu-Flo™ (solenoid) option. www.psgdover.com

NEW SPECTROPHOTOMETER HAS ULTRA-FAST SCAN CAPABILITIES

Shimadzu has announced the release of its new UV-1900 UV-Vis spectrophotometer ideal for analysis in food, pharmaceutical, life science, chemistry and electronics applications. The UV-1900 is equipped with a user-friendly high-visibility colour touch panel that users can control with a finger or the stylus pen provided. When the system is in quantitation mode, the stages of the entire measurement process and the current status are shown on the display, allowing users to prepare for the next step. New to the UV-1900 are validation functions that are compliant with the United States Pharmacopeia (USP) and the European Pharmacopeia (EP). The instrument also can run checks for nine JIS items and the Japanese Pharmacopoeia (JP). The instrument's ultra-fast scan performance makes it capable of obtaining high-accuracy spectra in just a few seconds. It has a photometric repeatability accuracy of 0.0002 Abs max (0.5 Abs and 1.0 Abs), an improvement of five times conventional performance levels. www.ssi.shimadzu.com

CHILLING/HEATING DRY BATH OFFERS EXACT SAMPLE TEMPERATURE CONTROL

The EchoTherm™ Model IC50 chilling/heating dry bath from Torrey Pines Scientific features a temperature probe that can be inserted directly into a sample or sample block. The probe senses the sample temperature or sample block temperature directly and sends that information to the unit to drive and control the temperature exactly where set. The bath also includes a sensor in the heater plate, allowing the user to set the plate temperature and use the probe to monitor the sample temperature. The Model IC50 displays and controls temperature to ±0.1°C. It can freeze, chill or heat samples from -10.0° to 110.0° in assay plates, centrifuge tubes of all sizes, vials, test tubes, and most any other sample container. It is particularly well suited to the molecular biology lab for doing hybridizations, sample prep for PCR, ligations, and enzyme reactions and deactivations. www.torreypinesscientific.com

CUSTOM MADE PRODUCTS ON NEW ONLINE CATALOGUE

Watlow SELECT is a recently introduced platform where users can quickly identify, configure and purchase Watlow’s selection of electric heaters, temperature sensors, temperature controllers, and power controllers. Users can easily find the best performing products online and in Watlow catalogs, design the product to fit their application, readily access drawings and technical content, and receive five days or less shipment on most products. Many SELECT products also have same-day build-to-order options for when timing is urgent. Online tools guide users to the right products, configuration tools help ensure an exact fit and short lead times. www.watlow.com

LIST OF ADVERTISERS & WEBSITES Nova Biomedical

Page 2 ............................................................... www.novabio.us

VWR

Page 4 ....................................................................www.vwr.com

Canadian Food Business

Page 19 ........................... www.canadianfoodbusiness.com

Hanna Instruments

Page 20 .................................................... www.hannainst.com

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Moments in TIME

Canada’s First

CLONED PIGS F

irst, it was Dolly the sheep, the first animal to be cloned in 1996. Monkeys, cows and mice followed. In 2007, pigs joined that exclusive group, courtesy of researchers at McGill University. Seventeen male piglets were cloned from cells that were collected from an adult pig. The cells were closely monitored and cultured in vitro to ensure their success, and the nuclei of these mature cells were then injected into matured germ cells that had their nuclei removed. The developing embryos were transferred to female pigs, and the piglets were born in three litters from October to November. Seven were euthanized and the remaining 10 are currently growing normally. Dr. Vilceu Bordignon, director of the Large Animal Research Unit at McGill, stated that the project aims to produce stem cells that will aid in the treatment of human genetic diseases in the future.

Reference: www.mcgill.ca/reporter/40/08/pigs/ www.mcgill.ca/newsroom/channels/news/canadas-first-cloned-pigs-born-mcgill-28153 www.businesspundit.com/20-animals-that-have-been-cloned/

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July/August 2018 LAB BUSINESS


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Lab Business July/Aug 2018  

Lab Business July/Aug 2018