Freezing Cells

Ken Muldrew kmuldrew at
Thu Jan 30 13:33:01 EST 1997

Jack JWA van Loon <jvanloon at> wrote:

>Does any of you have any experience in freezing (and storing) single 
>cells at -20 dgr.C ?
>What happens if a cell suspension (with DMSO) goes trough a temperature 
>profile of -10 to -70 degr.C?
>Do you know of any references ....? They are very hard to find.

-20'C is a poor temperature for storing cells. They are faced with a
very high concentration of salt (and any other solutes) and the
temperature is still high enough for biochemistry to occur (the
temperature slows reactions down, but the concentrating action of the
ice speeds them up). If you need long term storage, it's much better
to get them to at least -70'C. Search on 'cryobiology' and
'cryopreservation' and you'll find a respectable literature.

Ken Muldrew
kmuldrew at

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