COVID-19 Vaccine Storage: Addressing the Challenges of mRNA-Based Vaccine Storage at Ultra-Low Temperatures

Life Sciences, Pharma Manufacturing & Supply Chain, Healthcare, Laboratory Technology,
  • Tuesday, January 19, 2021

Many decades of research have allowed scientists to utilize mRNA-based medical biotechnologies. The latest innovation, though, has an unusually bright spotlight: utilization of mRNA in the form of a COVID-19 vaccine. The concept is straightforward: scientists artificially produce mRNA molecules containing the “messages” that direct our cells to create the particles to fight the virus that causes COVID-19.

mRNA vaccine research conducted prior to COVID-19’s arrival allowed scientists to devise mechanisms to stably deliver mRNA molecules into cells, once injected with a syringe. Compared to traditional vaccine development, mRNA vaccines are relatively simple to design and manufacture. This made them leading candidates in the urgent race for a COVID-19 vaccine. However, maintaining mRNA stability while outside our bodies presents a multitude of logistical hurdles, each requiring careful attention.

RNA utilized in research and clinical laboratories is traditionally stored in -80°C freezers. These ultra-low temperatures (ULT) cease molecular movement and enzyme activity in mRNA samples, preserving their structure and function for many years. An ultra-low temperature freezer is a staple in every life science laboratory, but in clinics and hospitals where conventional vaccines are stored at 5°C, specialized freezers do not exist. To add to the complexity, two leading mRNA vaccine manufacturers will require two separate temperature storage points (-20°C and -80°C), requiring separate, specialized units.

Vaccine administration sites must quickly equip their facilities with new cold storage equipment. The inability of an ultra-low temperature freezer to provide stable temperatures at a -80°C setpoint may compromise the vaccine’s viability, leading to improper immunization of the public. When considering ULT freezers, focus on cold performance: uniformity of temperature in the chamber when the door is closed and the ability to recover cold temperatures after a door opening. A critical balance of low energy consumption, longevity, and temperature performance make for the best COVID-19 vaccine ULT freezer.

Tune into this webinar to learn about critical factors to consider for proper vaccine storage in a new era of vaccine challenges. Learn about key decision points when choosing proper equipment for storing the upcoming COVID-19 vaccine and understand what differentiates high-performance, purpose-built vaccine equipment from the rest.



Carl Radosevich, Senior Manager, Scientific Applications & Collaborations, PHC Corporation of North America

Carl Radosevich is the Senior Manager of Scientific Applications & Collaborations at PHC Corporation of North America. His roles at PHCNA have included new product & business development, technical marketing, and business intelligence. Carl earned his undergraduate degree in Molecular and Cellular Biology from the University of Illinois and completed his master’s degree from Northwestern University’s Master of Biotechnology program. Prior to PHCNA, Carl was involved in various areas of biomedical research. He managed a new laboratory for a pediatric cancer research lab in Chicago, affiliated with Northwestern’s School of Medicine. Carl also spent several years developing clinical molecular diagnostic assays at Nanosphere (now Luminex), a nano-biotech company in Illinois.

Message Presenter

Joe LaPorte, Director, Projects and Regulatory, PHC Corporation of North America

Joe LaPorte is the Director of Projects and Regulatory at PHC Corporation of North America. Joe has over 30 years of international experience in the field of cold chain management and ultra-low refrigeration. He has served on the Energy Star stakeholder committee for Lab Grade Products and currently serves as a voting member on an NSF committee charged with defining a new American National Standard for vaccine storage.

Message Presenter

Who Should Attend?

This webinar will be of interest to all stakeholders involved in cold chain logistics, distribution and storage of the COVID-19 vaccine and other mRNA vaccines, including:

  • Clinical Distributors
  • Clinical Scientists
  • Clinical Teams
  • Vaccine Administrators
  • mNRA Researchers
  • Supply Chain

What You Will Learn

In this webinar, participants will learn:

  • What critical factors to consider for proper vaccine storage in a new era of vaccine challenges
  • Considerations to make when purchasing cold storage equipment for storing the upcoming COVID-19 vaccine
  • What differentiates high-performance, purpose-built vaccine equipment from the rest

Xtalks Partner


PHC Corporation of North America is a leader in laboratory equipment for biopharmaceutical, life sciences, academic, healthcare and government markets. The company is operated as a subsidiary of PHC Holdings Corporation, Tokyo, Japan, which is a global healthcare company involved in the three core businesses of Medical Devices, Healthcare IT and Life Sciences. Product lines under the new PHCbi brand include the space saving and energy efficient VIP® ECO, TwinGuard® and VIP Series ultra-low temperature freezers, cryogenic and biomedical freezers, pharmacy and high-performance refrigerators, cell culture CO2 and multigas incubators, programmable heated and refrigerated microbiological incubators, cell processing work stations and Drosophila/plant growth chambers. For more information, please call PHC Corporation of North America at 800-858-8442, email [email protected] or visit

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