Last Updated on November 28, 2023

Cryopreservation is a valuable technique for preserving cells or tissues for future use. One of the most common and reliable methods for cryopreservation is the use of dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO) as a cryoprotectant. In this article, we will explore the benefits of using DMSO for cryopreservation, outline the steps involved in freezing cells in DMSO, and introduce our CytoSAVER liquid nitrogen-free controlled-rate freezer that can make the process even more efficient and reliable.

Why use DMSO for cryopreservation?

DMSO has been extensively used as a cryoprotectant due to its ability to protect cells during the freezing and thawing process. It is effective for the cryopreservation of a variety of cell types, including blood cells, stem cells, and other mammalian cells. DMSO can penetrate cell membranes, where it acts to prevent ice crystal formation, which can be detrimental to cells. DMSO has low toxicity to cells, but it can solubilize and permeate compounds that could be cytotoxic. Additionally, too high a concentration of DMSO can dissolve cell membranes. We must take care when working with DMSO as a cryoprotectant.

Find out more about our liquid nitrogen-free controlled-rate freezers and how they can help you in your research.

How to freeze cells in DMSO

The process of freezing cells in DMSO involves several critical steps that need to be followed to ensure that cells remain viable after thawing. Here is a step-by-step guide:

  1. Culture your cells: The first step is to grow the cells in an appropriate medium until they reach the desired confluency.
  2. Prepare the freezing medium: There are several types of prepared freezing media available on the market, and it’s important to choose the appropriate media for your particular cell type. The freezing medium should contain the appropriate concentration of DMSO or other cryoprotective agents to protect your cells during the freezing process. The concentration of DMSO can vary depending on the cell type, but a typical concentration is between 5-10%.

    Different types of cells may require different cryoprotective agents or varying concentrations of DMSO. In addition to DMSO, other common cryoprotective agents used in freezing media include glycerol, ethylene glycol, and serum. Choosing the correct freezing medium is crucial for the successful cryopreservation of your cells.

    When selecting a freezing medium, it’s important to consider factors such as cell type, cell size, and membrane permeability. Certain cell types may require specific additives or lower concentrations of DMSO to avoid toxicity. Additionally, serum-free media may be preferred for some applications to reduce the risk of contamination or immune response. Make sure to follow the recommended protocol for your specific cell type and choose a high-quality freezing medium to ensure the best results.

  3. Wash the cells: Wash the cells with a buffer to remove any traces of serum or other contaminants that could interfere with the cryopreservation process.
  4. Add the freezing medium: Add the freezing medium to your cells and gently mix to ensure that the cells are evenly coated.
  5. Transfer to freezing containers: Transfer your cells to appropriate freezing containers, such as screw-top cryovials. It is recommended to fill the liquid up to half the volume of the vial due to the expansion during the freezing process.
  6. Freeze the cells: The freezing process should be performed slowly to minimize damage to the cells. Ensure a consistent rate of freezing the cells by using a controlled-rate freezer, such as our CytoSAVER liquid nitrogen-free. Freeze the cells at a rate of -1°C per minute until they reach -80°C.
  7. Store the cells: Once the cells are frozen, they can be stored in a liquid nitrogen freezer until they are needed.

Why use the CytoSAVER liquid nitrogen-free controlled-rate freezer?

The CytoSAVER liquid nitrogen-free controlled-rate freezer is a cutting-edge technology that makes cryopreservation more efficient and reliable. It uses a proprietary cooling technology that eliminates the need for liquid nitrogen, making it a cost-effective and accessible alternative to traditional liquid nitrogen freezers. Additionally, the CytoSAVER is easy to use and does not require any special training or expertise.

The CytoSAVER provides several advantages over traditional liquid nitrogen freezers. First, it offers consistent freezing rates, which helps to minimize damage to the cells during the freezing process. Second, it reduces the risk of cross-contamination and sample loss by eliminating the need to handle liquid nitrogen. Third, it is more energy-efficient and environmentally friendly, reducing operating costs and minimizing the environmental impact.

Freezing Cells in DMSO – Conclusion

In conclusion, the process of cryopreserving cells in DMSO has become a vital technique in modern scientific research, as it allows for the long-term preservation of precious cell lines and biological samples. DMSO has proven to be a highly effective cryoprotectant, offering protection to cells during freezing and thawing. However, traditional cryopreservation methods can be challenging, with safety concerns and the need for liquid nitrogen storage. Our CytoSAVER liquid nitrogen-free controlled-rate freezer addresses these challenges, offering a safe, efficient, and cost-effective way to preserve cells. By using the CytoSAVER, scientists can ensure that their cells are frozen down in a controlled manner without the need for liquid nitrogen, making cryopreservation more accessible and reliable than ever before.

Find out more about our liquid nitrogen-free controlled-rate freezers and how they can help you in your research.