[Cytometry] question about antibodies stability

Irina Grigorieva PhD irina.grigorieva at northside.com
Mon Jul 20 10:31:36 EDT 2009


Your story sounds like a 'series of unfortunate events'. The combination
of high temperatures and 48-hour long shipping has a potential of
damaging your antibodies (although nobody know how many hours / or
minutes the antibodies were really exposed to 100 degrees). The position
of the company is also understandable: this is their standard shipping
method, which has been working fine with the quality of their products.
So they are not willing to pay unless you prove that the quality of
antibodies has been diminished. To me the easiest thing (if possible) is
to check the antibodies on some samples or standards, which are not as
valuable as your materials. Since I am working in the clinical lab, we
always validate all received antibodies. So far (within last 6 years) I
have not had quality problems resulted from the shipping. If you can
prove to yourself that ABs are still good, you are good to go. If, on
the other hand, you see quality problems, submit this to your vendors
and they would replace their products.

To avoid these troubles you may consider a) place your orders only on
Monday through Thursday to avoid longer than overnight shipping time and
b) pay little extra for +4 degrees shipment.

Best regards,  Irina

Irina Grigorieva, PhD
Flow Cytometry & Molecular Diagnostics Laboratory,
Northside Hospital, Atlanta, GA
voice (404)-851-6541
fax (404)-845-5353

-----Original Message-----
From: cytometry-bounces at lists.purdue.edu
[mailto:cytometry-bounces at lists.purdue.edu] On Behalf Of J. Paul
Sent: Sunday, July 19, 2009 9:27 AM
To: Cytometry Mailing List; J Paul Robinson
Subject: [Cytometry] question about antibodies stability

Dear colleagues -

I recently had about $800 antibodies shipped for a series of 
experiments. They were shipped on Saturday and the temperature over the 
weekend was nearly 100 degrees...when they were delivered on Monday 
morning they were warm. I wrote to the company and got the following 
response. I have removed the name of the company. The cost of doing the 
experiments is very high and will use valuable clinical materials. The 
company told staff that they would replace the antibodies if they didn't

work. When we questioned them here is their response - I'd like to hear 
of others think this is accurate or acceptable.

---------company response to my email-----------------
"We understand your frustration. I would like to reassure you that we 
don't ship any orders out on Fridays. Our standard method of shipping is

to ship Saturday evening to reduce the amount of time spent in transit. 
Also, we have successfully shipped Saturday for Monday delivery for the 
past three years, which is why we guarantee that our products will be 
stable when they arrive.

Please read below for more information {website removed]:

All [company removed] products are thawed to room temperature before 
shipping and all are shipped out at room temperature every day of the

Please note that the majority of antibodies are stable at room 
temperature (RT) for long periods of time. Experiments conducted at 
[company removed] show that, for antibodies left at RT, activity remains

constant for 2 months before showing any decline. However, as a 
precautionary measure and to extend the shelf life of the antibodies, we

ship our antibodies in refrigerated packaging which has been shown to 
provide a stable environment for antibodies in transit."

So do I risk my valuable samples to antibodies that arrive under these 
conditions? I am really not sure - perhaps my concerns are not


Paul Robinson

J. Paul Robinson
SVM Professor of Cytomics
Professor of Biomedical Engineering
Director, Purdue University Cytometry Laboratories
Past-President, International Society for Analytical Cytology
(now International Society for Advancement of Cytometry)

Purdue University Cytometry Laboratories
Bindley Bioscience Center
1203 West State Street
Discovery Park, Purdue University
West Lafayette, IN 47907-2057
Ph (765) 494 0757; Fax (765) 494 0517
email: jpr at flowcyt.cyto.purdue.edu

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