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What factors should I consider in choosing a laboratory?

When looking for a laboratory to perform your testing, choosing an independent, third-party laboratory is often a viable option. Whether you need performance, ingredient, reverse engineering, toxicology, or other testing, often it is most convenient to obtain third-party testing. So how can you ensure you are choosing the best laboratory for your testing? Here are 10 factors to consider when choosing a laboratory to perform testing:

  1. Location/distance – Whether you will be shipping one sample, or many samples, the location and distance between you and the testing facility is a factor to consider. Shipping some materials, such as biologics, can be time sensitive and more expensive, so choosing a laboratory in closer proximity may be a more reasonable option.
  2. Time - If you’re dealing with perishable items, especially food and beverages, the turnaround time on testing is of great importance. Feel free to ask potential laboratories for estimates on their turnaround time. In addition to the lab’s turnaround time, you also need to ensure they are available to perform the testing when you need it.
  3. Cost - Don’t let cost be your ultimate deciding factor. You can find out if laboratories offer discounts for continuous or large volume testings, but keep in mind that the cheapest option isn’t always the best.
  4. Services – In addition to finding a laboratory that can perform he exact testing you need, it may also be wise to think ahead about future testing you may need, and choose a laboratory that could easily facilitate additional testing for you. Some labs even provide additional services in regards to compliance or standards. Be sure you examine the lab’s full array of services.
  5. Accreditations/certifications – One of the more important factors to consider when choosing a laboratory is outside accreditation which ensures credibility. Look for accreditation ISO 17025 when looking for a laboratory.  Additionally, some testing requires it be done by an ISO 17025 lab. By choosing an accredited lab, your results will be widely accepted. (Other organizations include NVLAP and A2LA).
  6. Expertise – Perhaps most important is to choose a laboratory who is an expert in your field. Read about them and previous testings they have conducted, or ask to speak with an engineer and ask them your specific questions.
  7. Communication - During the course of your interactions, has the lab been quick to respond to you and your questions? Have they made an effort to get accurate information for you? Find a laboratory you feel comfortable engaging with and who you feel will be responsive to you.
  8. Reporting - Before making your decision, determine how the laboratory reports their findings to you. Some labs deliver only raw data, whereas others provide simple, reader-friendly versions. Additionally, you may also want to ask how long it will take to receive the report once the testing has concluded.
  9. Recommendations - Word of mouth is often our most trusted form of advertising. If you know someone who has worked with a lab you are considering, ask their opinion. You can also read reviews posted on third party websites.

Finding the right laboratory to perform your testing should not be a hasty decision. Thoroughly research and ask questions of any labs you are considering. After all, you don’t want to have to repeat testing or have your product delayed in reaching the market.

Soil Testing

Soil testing and anagardeninglysis is most commonly done to determine the concentration of nutrients like nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium, as well as to understand the composition and characteristics, like pH or acidity of the soil. These tests can help determine deficiencies as well as growth potential.

Composite soil samples should be representative of the area needing testing, meaning they should have relatively the same color, texture, slope, etc. 10-20 samples per 40 acres is necessary to get accurate results. Sampling in the fall can provide best results as this is when pH and nutrient levels are at their lowest. However, sampling should be done about the same time every year to accurately track changes. Testing should ensue every year for up to 4 years, until quality results are established. Results from soil testing provide recommendations for fertilizers or other means to improve the quality of the soil.

Contract Laboratory has helped many companies acquire soil testing, such as:

  • Middle East Proficiency Laboratory needed for ACi, ASTM construction materials proficiency testing for soil, aggregate, concrete, bitumen, water
  • Environmental laboratory needed for US EPA Liquid release testing by US-EPA 9096 needed for 2-4 samples with consistency of soil
  • Large corporations needs Environmental laboratory for fungicide efficacy field trials :in-furrow and/or soil drench fungicide applications targeting soilborne plant pathogens
  • Oak plantation needs environmental laboratory for soil and tissue testing to identify transplant stress, blight or Chlorosis
  • Bioanalytical Laboratory needed for Quantitative PCR analysis for Colletotrichum acutatum in soil and plant tissue samples from strawberry fields
  • Environmental laboratory needed for insecticide residual analysis on soil, water and cabbage leaves. Please provide the price/quotation and duration of the analysis
  • University researcher needs environmental laboratory for soil analysis and water microbial analysis 1) soil physical particle size distribution test chemical, total carbon, minerals testing microbiological total fungal, bacterial and earthworm analysis 2) water microbiological analysis total fungal, bacterial and coliform determination
  • And more!

If your organization is in need of a laboratory to perform soil or aggregate testing or analysis, call us at 1-855-377-6821 or submit an online test request.

Preservatives used in Cosmetics

Made mainly of oils, water, and peptides, cosmetic are an ideamake-up1l medium for the growth of bacteria, yeast, mold, and fungus. To prevent the growth of microbes, preservatives are added to many cosmetics and personal care products, including those made of natural ingredients, to maintain the products’ integrity and inhibit the bacteria and fungus growth and prevent the product from spoiling.

Cosmetics preservatives are added to ensure the longevity and safety of the product as well as safety of the user. Contamination by microorganisms can cause skin irritations, infections, or sensitivities. A few common preservatives include:

  • Benzylalcohol – fights gram-positive and gram-negative bacteria and inhibits growth of yeast and mold
  • Tetrasodium EDTA – improves efficacy of other preservatives
  • Parabens – inhibit fungal growth
  • Formaldahyde  releasers – fights bacteria
  • Phenoxyethanol – gram-positive and gram-negative bacteria, yeast, mold, inhibitor
  • Germall Plus – fights yeast and mold
  • Organic acids – effective in fighting fungi and bacteria

Contract Laboratory often receives test requests for testing cosmetic, beauty and other personal care products. The following are recent test requests we have received:

  •  Cosmetics company needed for reverse engineering and formulation of skincare product.
  • Cosmetics company needs analytical chemistry laboratory needed for Deformulation Testing of Lip Balm to know the percentage of each ingredient in the product.
  • Toxicology Laboratory needed for cosmetics packaging testing to The Toxics in Packaging Clearinghouse (TPCH) TPCH testing on cosmetic products
  • Laboratory needed for study to determine the efficient method for determining amount of residual alcohol left over after sanitizing metal mixing equipment.
  • Cosmetics laboratory needed for product development of dye used in eye makeup
  • China or Hong Kong laboratory needed for lipgloss testing to meet FDA requirements prior to importing to the USA.
  • Media company needs cosmetics analytical chemistry labroatory for gold testing for % of Gold in face cream
  • View more

Need cosmetics testing? Submit a Laboratory Test Request by calling us at 1-855-377-6821 or online HERE.

What is TCLP testing?

Landfill Toxicity Characteristic Leaching Procedure TCLP Testing

Landfill Toxicity Characteristic Leaching Procedure TCLP Testing

Toxicity characteristic leaching procedure (TCLP) is an analytical method used to determine whether or not waste is hazardous by determining the mobility of organic and inorganic substances in liquids, solids, and metaphasic waste.

TCLP is used to determine if waste meets the EP Toxicity definition by testing it for 40 contaminants. If a waste product fails one or more of the contaminant tests it’s considered a hazardous waste. TCLP data is used to determine whether a facility can accept certain waste. If TCLP levels are below the maximum contamination levels, the waste is accepted at the facility, if the levels are above the maximum level, they cannot enter the facility and must be taken to a hazardous waste disposal facility.

Wastes are considered hazardous if they are ignitable, are corrosive, are reactive, are toxic, or are listed on hazardous waste codes.

Contract Laboratory has received the following TCLP test requests:

  • Environmental toxicology laboratory needed for TCLP Testing: Toxicity characteristic leaching procedure TCLP metals
  • Materials laboratory needed for leachable heavy metals testing in a ceramix matrix to EPA TCLP 1311 submethod SW-846 EPA 6010/7470 . Must have ability and track record of performing the EPA Test Method.
  • Asia Reliable lab needed for metallurgical analysis of solids residue and electrolyte analysis for (chloride hydrometallurgy) purpose: XRD DTA/TGA ICP liquid Digest & ICP Fire assay TCLP QEMSCAN If the answer is yes, what is the normal lead time, ballpark asking price and would you be able to provide us with a specification of your lab capabilities?
  • USA Materials laboratory needed for EPA waste contaminant characterization testing of waste Rags/ Wipes/ Gloves with paint related material to EPA methods. Lab nees to pull samples and characterize waste of contamination with -chips of concrete and paint -rags with slime -propylene glycol -oils with water -wipes with acid EPA methods, TCLP, EPA 8260 &8270 flash point.
  • India, Asia Materials Laboratory needed for ASTM Testing: 1) Heat Transmission coefficient 2) Rigidity – ASTM C393 3) Elongation – ASTM D638 4) Deflection Temperature under load – ASTM D648 5) Coefficient of Linear Thermal expansion : ASTM D696 6) Impact resistance – ASTM D732 7) Toxicity : should be within acceptable, TCLP 8) Colour change at 80degC : No visible change 9) Delamination at 80deg C : No delamination 10) Bending strength : ASTM D747 11) Sound Reduction : 27Db
  • USA Analytical Chemistry Laboratory needed for testing of TCLP extracts for Thiocyanate by SM 4500-CN-M.
  • and more!

If you need TCLP or other environmental testing or scientific research, call us at 1-855-377-6821 or submit a Laboratory Test Request.

Laboratory Techniques for Identification of Adenoviruses

Colorized transmission electron micrograph of adenovirus

Colorized transmission electron micrograph of adenovirus

Contract Laboratory has received a request from a company needing a Clinical Laboratory  for ELISA Testing for the neutralizing antibodies for adenovirus.  there are many different Laboratory Techniques that maybe used for the Identification of Adenoviruses. Adenoviruses cause diseases that infect the upper respiratory tract, eyes, intestines. Adenoviruses have double-stranded DNA, are medium-sized and non-enveloped icosohedral viruses.

Microbiology Laboratories identify Adenovirus infections by a number of laboratory techniques including antigen detection, polymerase chain reaction, virus isolation, and serology.There are more than 50 types of immunologically distint  Adenoviruses that cause human infection.   Adenovirus typing is done by hemagglutination-inhibition and/or neutralization with type-specific antisera or by molecular methods.

Contract Laboratory has worked with a number of companies on their Adenovirus research and development projects including the following

  • Clinical laboratory needed for Elisa testing for neutralizing antibodies for the AAV9 associated adenovirus
  • Industrial cleaning equipment company needs virology laboratory for Virucidal efficacy testing on Avian influenza virus (AIV),, H7N1Noroviruses, Adenovirus & Polivirus Have to test efficacy of electrolyzed water or Hypochlorous Acid solution (ph 6.5-7, ORP 800+, FAC 200 ppm) against various viruses and notice kill time and log reduction.
  • Pharmaceutical Virology Laboratory needed for evaluation of a new topical antiviral in an invitro anti-viral assay against Adenovirus and Herpes Simplex Virus
  • US EPA or GLP certified Virology Laboratory needed for disinfectant efficacy testing. Conduct virucidal suspension test as per EN14776 or ASTM E1053-11 method Adenovirus type 5 HSV-1 Poliovirus MERS or any available Influenza strain
  • Microbiology Laboratory needed for viral efficacy testing of aerosol containing essential oils against Herpes, Polio and Adenovirus

View the many more laboratory test requests that Contract Laboratory has received from pharmaceutical, biotechnology and other healthcare research facilities for Adenovirus Testing. and more can be viewed View Laboratory Test Requests

Need Microbiology Laboratories for Identification of Adenoviruses or other adenovirus testing or research,? Call 1-855-377-6821 or  Submit an Laboratory test request.

Fair Packaging and Labeling Act FPLA Testing

Contract receives regular requests from manufacturers looking for laboratories to perform product testing for labeling claims. The Fair Packaging and Labeling Act (FPLA) of 1967, issues regulations from the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) that requires consumer goods to be labeled disclosing and identifying the contents and naming the manufacturer or distributor as well as their location, and the quantity of contents. The FPLA also has regulations preventing deception in regards to ingredients and size of packaging, as well as other regulations where necessary. The FPLA refers to all food, drugs, cosmetics, household items, medical devices, and more.

Fair Packaging and Labeling Act FPLA Testing

Fair Packaging and Labeling Act FPLA Testing

Some of the recent packaging test requests we have received include:

  • Packaging laboratory needed for bottles and caps testing for bottled water.
  • Packaging laboratory needed for melt flow index MFI testing for hdpe resin used in the manufacture of plastic crates. 20 samples
  • LONG-TERM TESTING Brewery needs packaging laboratory to outsource their HDPE resin analysis used in producing plastic plastic crates for bottles. Melt Flow Index (MFI) analyser for HDPE resin.
  • Packaging Laboratory needed for vibration testing an automotive pallet load to ensure returnable packaging will hold up pack ships for automotive manufacturing industry. size of pallet load 48x45x53h total weight 1050lbs 4 layers per pallet load will the bottom layer hold up
  • Packaging Laboratory needed for Burst Strength Testing of Corrugated Cardboards.
  • Pharmaceutical company needs packaging laboratory for special packaging of three different types of bottles to 16CFR 1700.20, Testing procedure for special packaging
  • Packaging Laboratory needed for Child resistant packaging testing on resealable mylar bag.
  • Packaging Laboratory needed for packaging certification testing as Child Resistant according to 16 CFR 1700.20, Testing procedure for special packaging.

    Packaging Labeling Claims Testing

    Packaging Labeling Claims Testing

  • Pharmaceutical packaging laboratory needed for packaging testing of containers to USP 671 Containers?Performance Testing for light transmission requirements
  • e-liquid company needs packaging laboratory for packaging teting of glass and LDPE Plastic bottles to Title 16, Part 1700.20, Testing procedure for special packaging.We have glass and plastic bottles. Our plastic bottles are LDPE. We have 3 different caps and 12 bottle sizes.
  • and many more Packaing and Labeling Claims Testing . View  more Laboratory Test Requests!

If you are a manufacturer, producer, or distributor of consumer goods and need container, product packaging, or labeling claims testing, call us at 1-855-377-6821 or submit a Packaging Test Request.

To read more about the Fair Packaging and Labeling Act, click here.

Can the Shape of Crystals Change Laser Designs?

  These potassium diphosphate (KDP) crystals, which self-assemble in solution as hollow hexagonal rods, could find use in laser technology, particularly for fiber-optic communications. The scanning-electron image at right shows a crystal at higher resolution with scale added. Credit: L. Deng / NIST

The scanning-electron image of a Potassium diphosphate crystal  at higher resolution with scale added.
Credit: L. Deng / NIST

Research scientists at the US National Institute of Standards and Technology and China’s Shandong University have published their research that smaller  microcrystals which are faster and cheaper to make outperform conventional crystals in laser technology. This may lead the way towards making lasers more practical tools.

Crystals are used to create light into energy for lasers. For their research, the scientific researcher grew Potassium diphosphate  KDP crystals in solution into small hexagonal-shaped hollow tubes and long rods that could be stacked. Coated, stackable microcrystal rods would be able to product more energy leading to more applications.

Read the US National Institute of Standards and Technology (US NIST)  article at

Need laboratories for laser  technology innovation and development? Call us at 1-855-377-6821 or Submit Laboratory Test Request


What is an ISO 17025 Accredited Laboratory?


ISO standard 17025

ISO 17025 is a standard that specifies general requirements for testing and calibration laboratories first issued in 1999 by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) and the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC). Laboratories use this standard to consistently produce accurate and valid results.

This standard includes specifications for laboratories using standard test methods, non-standard test methods, and other laboratory developed methods and is the main standard for laboratories performing testing and calibrations. Laboratories who are accredited to ISO standard 17025 have proven that they are competent to perform testing and calibration. In most cases, producers, manufacturers, suppliers, or other organizations needing testing, will not accept results from unaccredited laboratories or testing facilities.

Contract Laboratory has helped many laboratories find ISO 17025 certified laboratories to perform their testing such as:

  • LONG-TERM TESTING Large spirits company needs ISO 17025 certified independent laboratory for periodic analysis on a variety of spirits and cordials. The analysis will consist of (at a minimum) % alcohol and specific gravity of various types of spirits and cordials.
  • ISO 17025 accredited electrical laboratory needed for qualification testing of Medium Voltage Cables rated 5- through 46kV per AEIC CS8, Section 15 for the 120 Day Accelerated Water Treeing Test followed by test protocol to include Electrical Measurements, High Voltage Time Test, Physical Measurements, and Tree Count.
  • ISO 17025 certified laboratory needed with validated methods for e-vapor products testing for harmful constituents. Execution of a DOE to support a regulatory filing look for harmful and potentially harmful constituents (HPHC) in e-Vapor products.
  • ISO 17025 Pharmaceutical analytical chemistry laboratory needed for USP Testing of Lidocaine HCL Injection – ID test and Assay, for Heparin Lock Flush – Assay, and particulates for both IAW USP <788>.
  • LONG-TERM TESTING: ISO 17025 Environmental Microbiology Laboratory needed for Testing, Water Quality Testing, Water Portability testing, 740 samples.
  • ISO 17025 Accredited Laboratory needed for Anti vibration glove testing according to ANSI/ASA S2.73 or ISO 10819, Mechanical vibration and shock – Hand-arm vibration or
  • ISO 17025 certified laboratory needed to conduct osmolality tests that report the results in mOsm/kg water units for a sample
  • ISO 17025 Laboratory needed for baby shampoo testing for MDMD hydantoin content in a baby shampoo.
  • ISO 17025 Pharmaceutical Laboratory needed for Pharmaceutical Equivalence test report for Injection product with raw data included: – Test items : description, assay by titration, purity by GC, qualitative tests, loss on drying, foreign insoluble matter, sterility, endotoxin, and pyrogen test. – Test methods : compendial methods listed in Japanese Pharmacopoeia

To view all test requests, click here.

If you need an ISO 17025 certified independent laboratory to perform testing or research, call us at 1-855-377-6821 or submit a test request online.

FDA Warns Against Ovarian Cancer Screening Tests


FDA warns against ovarian cancer screenings

Yesterday, the FDA issued a warning about the risks associated with testing marketed as ovarian cancer screenings and the delay in preventive treatments for women who are at an increased risk for developing ovarian cancer.

Though research and studies have extensively looked at screenings for the detection of ovarian cancer, no ovarian cancer screenings have been found to be sensitive enough to be reliable without high numbers of false results. False or inaccurate results include: women who receive a false-positive, or results that suggest ovarian cancer is present when it is not and therefore undergo unnecessary medical treatment or surgery. Alternately, women may receive results indicating a false-negative, meaning no ovarian cancer was found when in fact the cancer is present. This faulty result often results in delayed treatment.

The FDA is warning women and their doctors not to be misled by the claims of these screenings and to not make treatment decisions based on claims or even results of these tests. Currently, there is no safe, effective screening for ovarian cancer.

To read the FDA article, click here.

Contract Laboratory has helped facilitate many cancer and medical device testings such as:

  • iosafety Level BSL-2 Laboratory needed for conducting research on oncolytic viruses based on HSV1, Herpes Simplex Virus. We are looking for services for titrating how much HSV1 virus is present in our samples (e.g. plaque assays) and/or assays measuring cytopathic affect of virus in samples (CPE). We can provide cell lines for these assays if needed. If possible, we would also like to provide cancer cell lines to use for testing after titration is done in a more common cell line (e.g. vero cells).
  • Preclinical Contract Research Organization CRO needed for preclinical trial for specialized health supplement product. The objective is to measure the impact of product on the blood lactate level of ill test subjects, possibly rats. The type of illness can vary but we are especially interested in cancer
  • Ireland University Researcher needed for preclinical studies efficacy and cytotoxicity testing on Platinum(IV) drug anti-cancer agents. I am already working on identifying the effectiveness of these drugs e cytotoxicity studies on different cell lines
  • Toxicology Laboratory needed for toxicology testing of agricultural fungicide: Toxicological data on the technical grade material (Animal data) 1. Acute oral toxicity 2. Acute dermal toxicity 3. Inhalation toxicity 4. Skin irritation 5. Eye irritation 6. Skin or dermal sensitization 7. Sub-acute studies 8. Teratology/reproductive studies 9. Mutagenicity studies 10. Toxicity on nervous system studies 11. Metabolism data required to determine of absorption, excretion, distribution, accumulation and transformation in the animal body and their metabolites. 12. Tumor and cancer induction (if any) Toxicological data on the formulated/finished product (Animal data) 1. Acute oral toxicity 2. Acute dermal toxicity 3. Inhalation toxicity 4. Skin irritation 5. Eye irritation 6. Skin or dermal sensitization 7. Precaution for usage and storage 8. Diagnosis of poisoning, specific signs of poisoning, clinical teste 9. First aid measure 10. Medical treatment Information on environmental toxicity e.g. fish toxicity (LC50)
  • Germany or Europe Contract Research Organization needed for preclinical study to Test of novel immune stimulatory compounds in a mouse cancer model. Compounds are provided, mouse lab needed.
  • and more.

If you need cancer, oncology, or other medical device research or testing, call us at 1-855-377-6821 or submit a Laboratory Test Request.


Enzyme-linked immunospot (ELISPOT) assays are widely used for monitoring cellular immune responses and have been used in the diagnosis of tuberculosis and in monitoring the body’s tolerance to grafts and transplants. Similar to ELISA, ELISPOT combines immunoassay and bioassay because the live cells are cultured in the wells of the ELISPOT plate.

The ELISPOT assay is relatively easy to perform, using a 96-well plate and an ELISPOT reader to analyze the results. First, coating antibodies that are specific to a protein, are immobilized onto the well-plate. Cells are then added to the plate and incubated for a pre-determined length of time. Proteins released from the cells are then trapped by the coating antibodies surrounding the cells. A cell forms a colored spot, also known as a “footprint” in the well that represents its secretory activity. SFC, or spot-forming cells, is a measure of the number of antibody secreting cells.



The ELISPOT assay can measure almost any secreted protein where analysis of a single cell is needed. The FDA uses ELISPOT as the basis for diagnosing tuberculosis, done using the T-spot test. Contract Laboratory has helped many companies and organizations facilitate their ELISPOT assay research and testing such as:

  • Gene Therapy company needs CAP/CLIA laboratory to conduct ELISPOT testing for T Cell response
  • CAP / CLIA Bioanalytical Laboratory needed to do Elispot testing to ISO 15189.
  • Preclinical and Clinical Contract Research Organization needed for preclinical studies and clinical studies: 1. An Neutralizing Ab test to screen and identify animals and people with neutralizing antibody toour gene therapy vector, and 2. a CTL (Elispot) assay to measure CTL responses to our Gene therapy vectors.
  • USA Preclinical Laboratory needed for Non-GLP Preclinical Pharmacokinetic / Pharmacodynamic Study: Preclinical PK/PD NHP (cyno), 7 week study n=30, subcutaneous dosing, weekly serial bone marrow collection, whole blood and serum collection, and ability to perform FACS and Elispot, or alternatively provide lab space for us to do these assays.”
  • USA Clinical Laboratory needed for FACS ELISPOT testing
  • Sweden FDA GLP, CLIA GMP Bioanalytical laboratory needed for ELISPOT, Elisa, Flow Analysis
  • Germany or UK FDA GLP, AAALAC clinical CRO needed for Vaccination-Induced Cell-Mediated Immunity ELISPOT
  • FDA GLP / GMP bioanalytical laboratory needed for human blood testing: 1. IgA and IgG ELISA for a particular vaccine antigen and adjuvant; 2. ELISA for IFN-gamma, IL-2, IL-4. IL-5 and IL-13; 3. ELISPOT for IFN-gamma, IL-2, IL-4. IL-5 and IL-13.
  • and more

If you are a pharmaceutical company, hospital, health clinic, or other medical facility that needs a laboratory for ELISPOT assays, call 1-855-377-6821 or submit a Laboratory Test Request.

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