eCase Study: How CRL Reduced COVID Risk by Developing an At-Home Test

WESTBROOK, ME (April 29, 2021) – Clinical Reference Laboratories (CRL) of Lenexa, KS is one of the largest privately held clinical testing laboratories in the U.S., performing hundreds of thousands of tests daily. CRL has provided toxicology and general lab testing service for years and with the advent of the pandemic   expanded into high complexity molecular COVID-19 diagnostic testing. They faced a number of challenges in developing the CRL Rapid Response™ test kit, such as determining the most appropriate sampling method, sample preservation, and how to rapidly process enormous numbers of tests in a timely fashion to keep up with the demand.

At the beginning of the pandemic, CRL was manually processing 300 COVID samples a day and needed to scale up significantly. Molecular diagnostics is a complex process to begin with and performing it under high throughput conditions is especially challenging. When they encountered challenges with getting an automated liquid handler to deliver results with the desired specifications, they turned to the Artel MVS, which quickly identified the step in the assay that was causing problems. Once the issue was identified and subsequently corrected, the lab was able to scale up the liquid handler to processing 8,000 samples per day.

Rob Grbac, director of technical laboratory services, stated “The Artel MVS assists us with verifying our liquid handlers, evaluating method performance, liquid class development, and method transfers. Artel’s new PCRMix solution is a game-changer; if it had been available earlier it would have saved us hundreds of development hours trying to optimize our master mix. Within two months the MVS was also able to reduce monthly volume verifications down to 15 minutes per instrument from an hour, across 17 production instruments. That’s a huge savings.”

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About Clinical Reference Laboratory:
Clinical Reference Laboratory is one of the largest privately held clinical testing laboratories in the U.S. With dedicated facilities in North America and Europe, and through our global laboratory partners, we perform hundreds of thousands of tests every day for clients large and small. Our staff of more than 700 associates works around-the-clock to process and report results seven days a week for many of the largest retail, transportation, pharmaceutical, healthcare and financial service organizations in the world. Visit us at: or call 833-567-8376 for more information.