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Quiz #42 – Product Testing Solutions

We are taking a slight detour from our Chromatography related questions to offer a small peak into our Product Testing Solutions formulations. You can find background information for the quiz questions here:

Pickering Test Solutions

Perspiration Tests of Consumer Products (White paper)

Product Testing Solutions Brochure

Quiz #42 – Product Testing Solutions

Natural human perspiration has a complex composition that depends on the type of sweat gland, the person’s metabolism and hydration level. Pickering Laboratories’ human mimic artificial perspiration solutions are formulated based on published data for human sweat and provide the closest match to the “real thing” available on the market. These solutions are perfect for testing a variety of consumer products and medical devices as well as for forensics applications and as blanks for medical testing protocols.

  • There are two types of human perspiration; _____________ and _____________ perspiration.
  • ____________ perspiration is used for body temperature regulation.
  • Eccrine perspiration contains _______ acids, minerals, and metabolites.
  • Pickering Laboratories’ proprietary Artificial Eccrine Perspiration comes at pH_____.
  • Apocrine perspiration is secreted by apocrine glands and contains _______ acids and proteins.
  • Apocrine perspiration is initially odorless. Odor (volatile fatty acids) is produced once acted upon by _____________.
  • What is an oily substance that mixes with lipids to form a protective coating on the skins surface?
    1. Sebum
    2. Cerumen
    3. Perspiration
    4. All of the above
  • Currently, Pickering Laboratories offers the following product testing solutions:
    1. Perspiration
    2. Blood
    3. Saliva
    4. Lung Fluid
    5. All of the above
  • The pH of the solution is an important consideration in product testing, affecting corrosion rate, level of color degradation and leaching of metals and organic components from wearable products. Many procedures require a tight pH range during testing. To accommodate these pH requirements and to improve pH stability over time, Pickering Laboratories is offering _________ versions of industry-specific artificial perspiration formulations. By adding a Phosphate buffer to the original formulation, the pH stability of the solution is greatly improved while its effect on corrosion and colorfastness remains unaffected.
  • _____________ is one of the most important concerns in the textile industry. Discoloration of fabric can be due to perspiration, light, rubbing or a combination of all three. Salt, urea and lactic acid present in sweat can disrupt the bonding that dyes form with the fabric fibers, causing fading of the color. In addition, amino acids in sweat can attach to fabric to produce “protein stains”.
    1. Dissolution
    2. Staining
    3. Corrosion
    4. Colorfastness
  • Use of nanotechnology to endow new properties to textiles, such as antibacterial or UV protection, water repellency or flame retardancy, together with incorporating sensors and other digital components, creates the need to consider the effects of sweat on nanoparticles leaching and _____________ of integrated circuits as well.
    1. Corrosion
    2. Rusting
    3. Colorfastness
    4. Dissolution
  • A Certificate of Analysis (COA) and Safety Data Sheet (SDS) are available for all product testing solutions at no additional charge. True or False
  • Pickering’s product testing solutions and mimics are convenient, save you time, homogenous, reproducible, and customizable. True or False
  • Pickering offers customizable versions of our product testing formulations. True or False
  • Pickering Labs will be at booth 2138 at Pittcon 2023. True or False

Submit your answers to by April 28, 2023.

Announcing the winners of our previous quiz, Chromatography Quiz #41 – Amino Acids Baseline Noise

What is causing the baseline issues illustrated in the amino acids chromatograms?

Answer: Outgassing. There was no 100psi back-pressure regulator installed on the outlet of the detector flow cell. Because of this, there was not enough pressure to prevent boiling in the heated reactor (130C), which led to small bubbles showing up in the baseline.

Pickering Laboratories would like to congratulate the winners for our previous newsletter’s Chromatography Quiz #41:

Josiah Hakala from Minnesota Department of Health and Narjes Ghafoori from Los Angeles County Public Health Laboratory. 

They each will soon be receiving an Ember Travel Mug!  This smart device is “the world’s first temperature control mug” and does more than simply keep your coffee hot. According to Ember, “our smart heated travel mug allows you to set an exact drinking temperature and keeps it there for up to 3 hours, so your coffee is never too hot, or too cold.” 

Seems pretty cool to us!

Congratulations to our quiz winners!  Thank you all for your submissions!

Milestone Anniversaries

We are very fortunate at Pickering Labs to have MANY hard-working, long-term employees in our midst! Just this past year we have had cause for celebration, honoring the below BIG-TIME anniversaries: 

Jim Murphy, President and Gloria Garcia, Customer Support – Celebrating 30 yearsJim Murphy, President and Gloria Garcia, Customer Support – Celebrating 30 years

Jim Murphy, President and Gloria Garcia, Customer Support – 30 years

Maria Ofitserova, Sr. Research Chemist celebrates20 years

Maria Ofitserova, Sr. Research Chemist –
20 years

Anita Gribaldo, Packaging & Production Support celebrates 20 years

Anita Gribaldo, Packaging & Production Support – 20 years

Gabriela (Gaby) Ron, Production Chemist celebrates20 years

Gabriela (Gaby) Ron, Production Chemist –
20 years

Ed Cowan, Instrument Assembly celebrates 20 years

Ed Cowan, Instrument Assembly – 20 years


We like any excuse to throw a party around here (especially after the past 1 ½ years!) and having all these big milestones occur this past Summer really allowed us to have some fun. Please join me in congratulating all of these Pickering employees who have given so much to the company.

Rebecca Smith
Vice President
Pickering Laboratories, Inc.
1280 Space Park Way
Mountain View, CA 94043, USA
Phone: (650) 694-6700 x727

Pittcon 2020 – Taking a Trip to Chicago!

By David Mazawa

Pittcon 2020 was hosted in the “Windy City” of Chicago, Illinois from March 1-5 this year. I was joined by Rebecca Smith and Skip Vo and we had a wonderful time in Chicago! We all hope to come back in the near future.

We used the Pittcon platform to formally launch the Onyx PCX: the newest post-column instrument from Pickering Laboratories, Inc. It was a great opportunity to introduce our latest and greatest post-column instrument to distributors and interested customers from all around the world. Retaining all the best features of the Pinnacle PCX, our new Onyx PCX also supports greater compliance and usability for our customers.

Our redesigned marketing literature was also on display, including our brand-new catalog. All materials are free to download from our website here:

     – 2020 Catalog
     – Onyx PCX Brochure
     – Post-Column Brochure 
     – PTS Brochure

Pickering’s “best in show” giveaways enticed many show attendees to venture closer to our booth. Once drawn in, scientists and engineers alike were fascinated by our growing Product Testing Solutions line. It was great to see lots of interest in our Artificial Saliva products especially.

Our daily raffle was a big hit and we would like to congratulate the following raffle winners: Leonard Ver Vers of NALCO Water, Brian Edwards of Neurocrine, and Glendon Parker of UC Davis. Each of them is now enjoying an Onyx Whoop Strap and 6-month subscription to the Whoop online health and fitness community – perfect timing help our winners to stay moving during a shelter in place order.

Pittcon also gave us the chance to take our newest employee, Skip Vo (Purchasing Agent), on his first trip to Chicago! Skip and I took time before the conference started to see Chicago’s sites and have a classic Chicago steak dinner to celebrate. Skip was a big help with booth management and said he really enjoyed meeting our customers and vendors alike. Thank you for your help, Skip!

Rebecca Smith and Skip Vo showing off the colorful Pickering booth!
Rebecca Smith and Skip Vo showing off the colorful Pickering booth!

I know I speak for all the staff at Pickering Laboratories when I say I’m looking forward to mingling with the scientific community once again at Pittcon 2021 in New Orleans, Louisiana from March 6-10, 2021.

If there is anything I can do to provide service or support for you and your laboratory between now and then, please reach out to me at without hesitation.

Onyx PCX Launch – Press Release


Next generation post-column derivatization instrument delivers on promise of “Guaranteed Chemistry”

Mountain View, California, Nov 25, 2019 – Environmental, pharmaceutical and feed laboratories now have access to the newest model of post-column derivatization instruments – the Onyx PCX.  Every component of this system has been optimized for post-column applications, thereby improving ease of use, reliability and ruggedness of analytical instrumentation. Onyx PCX is used in the analysis of amino acids, glyphosate, mycotoxins, antibiotics, cannabinoids and a variety of other applications. This latest instrument is part of the commitment Pickering Laboratories has to complete application support. Together with analytical columns, high-purity reagents, mobile phases and methods, the Onyx PCX post-column system supports Pickering Laboratories’ guarantee of method performance and chromatographic separation.

The Onyx PCX features a precisely programmable convectional column oven with temperature gradient capabilities and a fully inert flow path with ceramic syringe reagent pumps, PEEK electronic valves and PTFE reactor coils. All main components of the system are accessible from the front panel for ease of monitoring and maintenance. Following the tradition of Pickering Laboratories’ derivatization instruments, the Onyx PCX can be connected to any HPLC system, greatly expanding the LC’s capabilities.

“We are also very excited about new software features, such as extensive record-keeping capabilities and automated heaters calibration,” says Dr. Maria Ofitserova, Senior Research Chemist at Pickering Laboratories. “In addition to log files collecting real-time data on all instrument parameters for troubleshooting purposes, we now have the User Journal that allows laboratories to maintain records of completed runs, error messages, changes to methods and sequences.” She continues, “these and other details are important for audits and regulatory compliance. We also introduced an automated calibration feature for our heaters, which supports instrument performance qualification in the field.”

About Pickering Laboratories, Inc.:

Pickering Laboratories, Inc. manufactures analytical columns, high-purity reagents, and post-column derivatization instruments that enable specialized analysis with High-Performance Liquid Chromatography Equipment.  For nearly 40 years, Pickering Laboratories has offered its expertise and technical support to our customers in the environmental, clinicals and food markets to help them achieve the highest sensitivity and selectivity of analysis.  Our supported methods include the derivatization of Amino Acids, Carbamates, Glyphosate, Aminoglycoside Antibiotics, Polyether Antibiotics, Biogenic Amines, Aflatoxins, Paralytic Shellfish Toxins, and more.

Contact Information:

Rebecca Smith
Director of Operations
Pickering Laboratories, Inc.
1280 Space Park Way
Mountain View, CA 94043

Farewell to Mike and Welcome to Rudy and Yuliana! Or, How We Spent Our Summer.

By Rebecca Smith

This year, our fiscal year kicked off with an extra special party – we combined our New Year’s bash with an Independence Day celebration, plus Mike Gottschalk let us roll out the red carpet and sparklers for a champagne toast to celebrate his retirement!  Talk about a party – we had a circus theme for the event and several people came in costume! 

Here we see Mike Gottschalk, retiring in style! Judy Pickering and Jim Murphy are ready for the fantastic BBQ catered lunch. Several people took advantage of the photo props, including Sareeta Nerkar, Gloria Garcia and Rebecca Smith. Also, we wanted to share plenty shots of President Murphy clowning around!

Everyone had a great time and we sincerely wish Mike all the best of luck in his retirement – Mike, may you delight in spending time with your grandkids and still find plenty of hours for golf!  Cheers and thank you for your many years of service!

The Pickering staff came back from the long holiday weekend recharged and ready for the start of the fiscal year!  New hire Maureen was just hitting her 90-days at Pickering and we thought the excitement was winding down around the lab…  That is, until we jumped headfirst into the deep-end of the hiring pool once more! 

With Mike’s retirement fresh in our minds, we began our search for a new Customer Service Manager to join our team.  We searched high, we searched low, we searched Indeed. 

As a result, we’d now like to introduce you to Rudy Suez, the newest – scratch that, second newest – employee to join Pickering!  Rudy joins us from his previous employer, where he managed the Inside Sales and Customer Service team that supported Veterinary Chemistry and Hematology customers for the last several years.  For our team, Rudy will be managing our Customer Service team as well as looking for new ways to impact our sales and customer experiences. 

When he has free time, Rudy enjoys hitting the gym on weeknights and road-tripping down to Disneyland whenever he can get away for a weekend.  You might have already spoken with him on the phone over the last couple of weeks, but next time feel free to ask him about Space Mountain while placing your order!

Here is Rudy while on a trip to Santiago, Chile.

Rudy got a chance to meet some of you at this year’s AOAC International conference and he can’t wait to continue building relationships with more of our customers.  He’s still has plenty to learn but he’s friendly and enthusiastic, so don’t be shy to share a little bit about your company and post-column application of choice, if you have the time!  Rudy would welcome contact via email or feel free to call him up and have a chat.

Rudy Suez, looking friendly as he represented Pickering at this year’s AOAC meeting in Denver!

And finally, speaking of new employees, we’d also like to briefly introduce Yuliana Lopez, our brand-new admin-of-all-trades!  Yuliana will be cross-training with Diana over the next several weeks and learning how to route your calls, take your orders, send your invoices and generally provide full-service customer support!

Yuliana Lopez and Diana Ancira, seen here mind-melding and being fabulous!

In her spare time, Yuliana enjoys watching anime, reading books and unleashing her creative genius on hair and makeup as a licensed cosmetologist!  If you’d like to say hello and welcome her to the team, she can be reached by email or by walking through the Pickering front door!  Otherwise, she can be reached along with Diana and Gloria at our email address!

Pickering to Attend the Upcoming Emerald Conference

The Emerald Conference has become the largest, most anticipated cannabis conference as it enters its fifth year in existence. The conference will be held from February 27th through March 1st and Pickering Laboratories is attending for the first time. We will be represented by Sareeta Nerkar, one of our research chemists.

Sareeta is looking forward to the beautiful 15-acre Peninsula, Loews Coronado Bay Resort, but her trip to San Diego isn’t all relaxation! She will be presenting posters on Pickering Labs’ cannabis-related applications, both Cannabinoids Analysis in Cannabis and Edibles and our latest Analysis of Mycotoxins in Cannabis Plant and Cannabis-Containing Products.

Hopefully this new conference will be engaging and informative, as Sareeta looks forward to learning about the newest scientific advancements in the cannabis industry.

If you’re in attendance, please feel free to stop by the posters and ask Sareeta all about the cannabis applications!

For more information about Pickering’s cannabis research please check our our archived article and visit our webpage for the latest application note releases.

Pickering Laboratories will Exhibit at Pittcon 2019

PITTCON 2019 is the 69th meeting of the Pittsburgh Conference in Philadelphia bringing the world of Analytical Chemistry Manufacturers in one place to exhibit the latest in instrumentation and applications.

Pickering laboratories will be exhibiting this year with exciting products and applications. Every year new Post Column products and applications are unveiled to new and current customers to demonstrate how Pickering Laboratories continues to expand the reach of Post Column Derivatization technology to address the new important analysis challenges in the news today.

The Pickering Test Solutions product lines continues to expand the number of artificial body fluid testing solutions for product testing applications. New this year is the addition of Artificial Ocean Water to this list and the first product for the Environmental product testing solutions category.

Visit us at Pittcon booth 2445 and make an entry in the drawing for a “Bose noise masking sleepbuds” (these are really cool check them out ) Plus all the other free stuff we offer.