Cryoniss launches its quality control testing service

Cryoniss launches its quality control testing service

Having spent a large proportion of my career generating and validating reagents for end-user assays.  I have always been truly passionate about making sure scientists get the basics right before launching into the complicated science.  Because of this it was a real privilege working at AstraZeneca where the senior leadership team understood and fully supported such priorities. 

In my final role at AstraZeneca, I was the Global Cell Bank Lead and with the support of an exceptional team, I oversaw the acquisition of high quality, ethically and legally sourced cell lines, generated cryopreserved cell banks that were fully quality control tested before releasing them to researchers. 

When Phil and I started to scope out setting up Cryoniss back in 2017, whilst carrying out a customer discovery workstream, I realised that small start-up companies found it a headache to either bring these screens in-house, or find contract research organisations offering quality screening assays.  Such companies had to sort out the logistics of shipping the samples, frequently to several suppliers to get different tests completed, for example Mycoplasma and cell line authentication.  As this was our bread and butter, and we already had both the logistics in place, and great relationships with excellent contract research organisations, we decided to offer a weekly service coordinating these screens.

We monitor the market and latest scientific advice to offer our customers access to highly sensitive, competitively priced screening assays.  By combining several companies’ submissions together, we can pass on savings from shared logistics fees and bulk purchase discounts from our partner contract research organisations.  All our customers need to do is send us a single email and a week later they get their personalised report back. 

We also offer this service to customers who do not have their samples stored with us.  If they are based at Alderley Park, samples can be dropped off.  For our off-site and international customers, we arrange the delivery of dry ice and packaging, with consignment paperwork, to the customer's premises and the samples are subsequently picked up for shipment to the appropriate testing facility.  All of this is coordinated by a simple email to

It is my hope that this service will help our customers to get back some precious time to focus on the real value-adding work they are doing, providing them with the vital reassurance that their reagents are not contaminated.  And of course, if there is a problem, we are there to help.

Sonia Houghton

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