Patricia Atkins Awarded for Achievement in Technical and Scientific Excellence

Medical Marijuana

Patricia Atkins, Product Application Scientist at SPEX CertiPrep, participated in the Stakeholder Panel on Strategic Food Analytical Methods (SPSFAM) “Cannabis  Potency” Working Group. The group worked to develop Standard Method Performance Requirements (SMPRs®) in an effort to find fit-for-purpose method(s) for cannabis potency. The working group examined analytical challenges, regulatory requirements, and gaps in current methodology, etc. to submit SMPRs against which candidate methods can be evaluated. The SMPRs that are developed will be applicable for industry and regulators alike. The AOAC stakeholder panel, SPSFAM, will be used to advance draft standards developed by this new working group.

The group narrowed its focus to five cannabinoids (of the 15 compounds of interest) required for the initial SMPR; THC, THCA, CBD, CBDA, and CBN.  Draft SMPRs were developed and are posted on the AOAC website at SPSFAm SMPRs for Public Comment: Cannabis and Proanthocyanadins in Cranberries and is open for public comment.

The standards development activities for cannabis potency are supported by AOAC Organizational Affiliates (OA) companies SPEX CertiPrep, Sigma-Aldrich, GW Pharmaceuticals, SCIEX, CEM Corp., and SC Labs through AOAC’s working group initiative.

The AOAC Official Methods Board recognizes significant contributions and meritorious volunteer service to the  AOAC analytical scientific community. Awards for both team and individual service are reviewed annually by the Official Methods Board.  Award categories are:  Achievement for Technical and Scientific Excellence, Expert Review Panel of the Year, Method of the Year, and Technical Service Award. Awardees receive their recognition during the AOAC Awards Ceremony during the AOAC Annual Meeting.

For questions or additional information, please contact SPEX CertiPrep at 1.800.LAB.SPEX or 1.732.549.7144 or via email at


The 2017 Solar Eclipse, View it With SPEX CertiPrep!


On Monday, August 21, 2017 there will be a solar eclipse across the United States. Now why is this eclipse special you ask… this is the first time since 1880 that a total solar eclipse will occur exclusively over the United States. No other country will see totality, though many countries will see a partial eclipse of the sun.2 The eclipse will take about 90 minutes to cross the United States and pass through about 12 states.3

So what exactly is a total solar eclipse? A total solar eclipse occurs when the Moon completely blocks the solar disk. In a total solar eclipse, the narrowest part of the path (where the Sun is completely blocked and the Moon casts its darkest shadow, called the umbra) is called the “zone of totality”.

What are the scientific benefits of the eclipse? The total solar eclipse offers scientists a unique opportunity to pursue a number of unique science and engineering problems. The very dark color of the moon can be used to calibrate X-ray imagers to properly record the ‘zero signal’ state, while the eclipse will block out the disk of the sun letting the light from the mysterious inner corona within 100 km of the solar photosphere shine into various experiments for detailed study.1

Fun Fact! If you are one of the lucky ones in the totality zone, you may see stars in the daytime! As the sky darkens, planets and stars hidden in the sky by the Sun’s bright light will reappear. Look for Mars, Mercury, Jupiter, and Venus during totality.2

View the Eclipse with SPEX CertiPrep
SPEX CertiPrep would like to help you view the eclipse with us! All U.S. web orders placed on August 14th through August 18th will receive a pair of eclipse glasses for your viewing pleasure.

Check out this awesome video by NASA to learn more about the eclipse!

Image and Video sourced from