New extractables and leachables chemistry lab opening in Akron, Ohio

Smithers Rapra is about to become one of the only contract research organizations providing extractables and leachables testing in both North America and Europe, thanks to new lab space and new expert leadership.

Smithers Rapra will open a new extractables and leachables (E&L) lab this summer in Akron, Ohio, the latest investment in the global expansion of our testing capabilities and client services. Until now, the company’s E&L services have operated exclusively out of the United Kingdom. “Introducing new testing capabilities in the U.S. will allow us to bring our highly respected services closer to our North American clients,” said Nat Leonard, President of Smithers Rapra.

The new lab, which is nearly complete, will focus on extractables and leachables services and food contact analysis, supporting industry growth in the medical device, pharmaceutical, and food packaging industries. The lab is housed in the Akron Global Business Accelerator (AGBA), one of the country’s top performing technology business incubators and a local hub of great ideas and innovation.

In addition to the new space, Smithers Rapra is also investing in new talent and expertise to expand its services. The company named Paul Cummings as the lab’s General Manager. Cummings, who has a Master of Science degree in Analytical Organic Chemistry from Villanova University, joins the team after working most recently as a research fellow and manager of trace organic analysis for Intertek Pharmaceutical Services. “Paul has an astounding amount of experience. He’s the ideal choice to lead us forward in this operation as we continue to build our global footprint and improve our offerings in extractables and leachables testing,” says Leonard.

Daniel Norwood is also joining the team as an Independent Senior Consultant. With over 40 years of experience, Norwood is a pioneer of the extractables and leachables industry and will strengthen Smithers Rapra’s ability to help clients assess and address a wide range of difficult chemical migration challenges. His work will include the evaluation and implementation of study programs, as well as assisting clients with risk mitigation and regulatory submissions.

Together, Norwood and Cummings bring over 75 years of experience in chemistry and chemical analysis, pharmaceutical research, and industry leadership to the Smithers Rapra global team.

For those who would like to learn more about extractables and leachables, Smithers has released an exclusive four-part podcast series about E&L testing featuring four lab leaders from the U.S. and the U.K. Download the audio and transcripts by choosing a link below:

Part One: Testing processes for extractables and the potential discovery of known and unknown substances.
Part Two: Testing processes for leachables and the team’s predictions on future developments.
Part Three: Laboratory requirements and the current and future regulatory approval processes for extractables and leachables.
Part Four: The BioPhorum Operations Group (BPOG).