When to use an ultra-low temperature (ULT) freezer for biological materials.
Refrigerators and freezers are indispensable tools in laboratories and medical facilities where the storage of biological samples is critical. The careful storage process requires specialized equipment to ensure the integrity and longevity of these valuable materials.
Within the field of laboratory refrigeration, freezers play a crucial role by simplifying storage and preservation procedures. Among these, the ultra-low temperature (ULT) freezer stands out for its remarkable ability to reach and maintain extremely low temperatures. This exceptional feature is essential for the long-term preservation of biological materials and makes ULT freezers an indispensable resource in the field of sample storage.
Determination of the ideal temperature range for samples
A crucial aspect of preserving biological samples is determining the optimal temperature range for their storage. Different sample types require specific temperature conditions to maintain their viability and prevent deterioration. Therefore, the use of refrigerators and freezers is critical to meet the diverse needs of different biological samples.
Samples that are prone to rapid decay and cellular degradation benefit from colder temperatures, which can usually be achieved in a freezing environment. However, there are samples that can be adequately stored in the temperature ranges of a conventional laboratory refrigerator.
In the case of medications, it is essential to consult the manufacturer for exact storage temperature recommendations to eliminate any uncertainty. For other biological samples, adherence to established standard operating procedures, preservation techniques, and intended storage duration facilitates determination of optimal storage temperature.
Repeated freezing and thawing of specimens should be avoided as this may compromise specimen integrity and quality over time.
Biospecimen types stored in ultra-low temperatures.
The ability to store samples at ultra-low temperatures is critical for the preservation of various types of biospecies. These icy conditions effectively suppress biological activities, thus mitigating sample and drug degradation. Some prominent examples of biospecimens that require storage at ultra-low temperatures include:
- Vaccines: While conventional vaccines are often stored at refrigerated temperatures, mRNA vaccines require extremely low temperatures, typically in the range of -90 °C to -60 °C. Portable freezers or techniques using dry ice allow safe short-term storage of vaccines, while long-term preservation requires the stable environment of an ultra-low temperature freezer.
- Tissue samples: Tissue samples suspended in preservation solutions can be safely stored at approximately -20 °C, which is suitable for short-term storage. This temperature range facilitates the subsequent extraction of DNA and RNA from the samples. However, colder temperatures are often recommended for long-term storage of tissue samples without stabilizing solutions.
3.Biochemical assays and reagents: Essential biochemical components such as enzymes retain their functionality at temperatures of about -80 °C. These conditions contribute to the maintenance of proteins, nucleic acids and other important biological molecules.
Essentially, ultra-low temperature freezers cover a diverse range of samples and are a cornerstone in laboratories and medical facilities involved in the preservation of biological materials.
ULT freezer temperature monitoring practices
Beyond their ability to reach extreme cold, laboratory freezers offer the added benefit of maintaining consistent temperatures. Temperature consistency is critical to the storage process, as temperature fluctuations can accelerate sample degradation. ULT freezers facilitate the storage process by allowing users to set and maintain their desired temperatures. This goal is achieved through conscientious maintenance practices.
Laboratory refrigerators and freezers integrate temperature indicators and control panels to ensure samples remain within their intended temperature range. In addition, advanced options include remote electronic monitoring in conjunction with alarm systems that promptly notify users of temperature deviations. However, it remains advisable to use manual temperature checking techniques to avoid loss of samples in the event of a freezer malfunction.
Frequently asked questions
- What is a freezer used for in the laboratory?
A freezer is an indispensable resource in laboratories, allowing long-term storage of biological materials such as vaccines, bacterial samples, tissue samples and certain chemicals.
2. what are freezers used for?
Freezers have a wide range of applications, from sample transport to long-term storage. Various options, including chest freezers, ultra-freezers and cryogenic freezers, cover different storage needs.
3. How are cold temperatures used to preserve biological samples?
Low temperatures inhibit biological processes and are therefore essential to preserve the viability of biological samples and prevent their degradation over time.
4. how to store biological samples?
Biological samples should be stored at stable, low temperatures in temperature-controlled, explosion-proof refrigerators or freezers.
For comprehensive insight into ULT freezers and proper preservation of biological samples, Clitec’s ultra-low temperature freezers offer a wealth of information and a range of cold storage options. Contact us to explore the range of solutions available to secure your valuable biological samples.