Tag Archives: Pyrogen

Sophie Bell BSc, Senior Technician – In-Vitro Toxicology – Wickham Laboratories Ltd.

Sophie Bell BSc (2)

Sophie Bell joined Wickham Laboratories in 2016 as a Technician in the In-Vitro Toxicology department. She was promoted to Senior Technician the same year and currently specialises in in-vitro Pyrogen testing and Cell Culture methods. 

She received her Bachelor’s degree in Biomedical Sciences from the University of Sheffield in 2015. 


Tell us a little about Wickham Laboratories, what does the company do?

Wickham Laboratories specialises in microbiology and toxicology testing for the global pharmaceutical and medical device industries.  We have over 50 years of experience in testing services and a broad range of technical expertise in identifying and providing solutions for our clients.  This long-standing experience in the industry means there is rarely a problem that we haven’t previously encountered and our clients rely on this expertise to ensure their regulatory compliance.

Why did you choose to hold this webinar?

We continuously strive to identify new technologies and services that are of benefit to the company, our clients and the industry. As part of this we recognise the need to implement in vitro testing methods where ever possible and have a strong commitment to reducing the need for animal testing.

Wickham Laboratories has a dedicated in vitro R&D department, of which I am part of, and our sole focus is on investigation into and implementation of non-animal alternative tests. We hope to showcase our extensive knowledge in both the technical and compliance aspects of implementing these alternatives.

What do you hope the audience will learn from attending this webinar?

My colleague will be running through the ongoing research into developing a potency bioassay replacement test and in my section of the webinar, I present a comparison of the three approved methods for pyrogen testing including limitations that should be considered.  While these specific instances may not be applicable for all of the audience, I hope that the audience will gain some further insight into the complicated process behind developing these alternative methods.

It’s important to understand that it’s not just a case of wanting to replace the animal test, but we also have to ensure through very thorough research that the new methods are at a minimum equivalent to (and ideally, better than) the existing methods, and often have to be considered in a product specific case by case basis.  This is because of the crucial focus on patient safety, which is at the heart of everything we do at Wickham Laboratories.

What was your inspiration to get into the industry?

After graduating from the University of Sheffield in Biomedical Sciences, where I gained experience in a research laboratory, I was looking to apply my knowledge and develop skills in an industry based setting. Moving into a company with the wealth of experience such as Wickham Laboratories, made perfect sense.

What is the most rewarding aspect of your job?

I would say the most rewarding aspect of my job is knowing that the work done here at Wickham Laboratories allows for utter assurance of product safety and, therefore, patient safety. In addition, being a part of the research into alternative methods is highly exciting, interesting and rewarding work.

Join Sophie Bell & Wickham Laboratories on 29th June for a webinar entitled ‘The Push for In-Vitro Alternatives in Toxicology’ at 3PM London/10AM New York.