Cooling biological materials to very low temperatures, under controlled conditions,
preserves structures and viability for further study.
Traditional cryopreservation is a highly effective method for storing cells and tissues, by keeping them in “suspended animation”. This stops the metabolic activity and preserves the compounds within cells such as enzymes. It is widely used in research and development applications for many types of plant and animal materials but also has a lot of valuable clinical uses such as in vitro fertilisation.
Organelles, cells, tissues, extracellular matrix, organs and other biological materials that are susceptible to damage caused by unregulated chemical kinetics, can be preserved by cooling to very low temperatures, typically −80 °C using solid carbon dioxide or −196 °C using liquid nitrogen.
However, damage can be caused by the formation of ice crystals during freezing, so cryopreservation methods include controlled rate and slow freezing, vitrification or the addition of cryoprotectants to provide protection.
Alpha Laboratories offers the BAMBANKER™ serum free cell freezing medium and StemSure® cryoprotectants, alongside an extensive range of cryovials and racks for ultra low temperature storage.