MHRA labs at LGC

The work of The MHRA Laboratories at LGC helps to protect public health by ensuring that medicines and healthcare products are safe for those who use them. The laboratory is operated under a Government Owned, Contractor Operated (GOCO) model at our site in Teddington.

Under contract to the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA), LGC hosts and operates the UK’s combined Official Medicines Control Laboratory (OMCL) for chemical testing and the British Pharmacopoeia (BP) Commission Laboratory. 

The laboratory is equipped for medicines testing and pharmacopoeia analysis and includes HPLC, GC-FID, GC-MS, HPLC-MS, TLC, titrimetry, infra-Red and UV spectrometers as well as the necessary balances and other essential equipment.

History and capabilities

The MHRA laboratories function as the Official Medicines Control Laboratory (OMCL) was first established at LGC in 2001 to carry out routine surveillance testing on licensed medicines to ensure the integrity of the market, as well as testing on unlicensed, illegal and counterfeit medicines. Examination of ‘high risk’ medicines for counterfeiting remains a very important part of the work undertaken. Some of the work carried out is required to be legally defensible and a number of employees have been trained to present scientific and technical evidence in courts of law.

The proximity of the Agencies laboratories to LGC’s high accuracy measurement capability has enabled it to benefit from access to state-of-the-art isotope ratio measurements to help identify counterfeit medicines.

One of The MHRA Laboratory's primary roles is to procure, establish and maintain reference standards (British Pharmacopoeia Chemical Reference Substances - BPCRS). The laboratory also supports the work of the British Pharmacopoeia Commission in establishing methods (known as monographs) for generic medicinal products (including herbals) available in the UK. The monographs established by laboratory staff are subsequently published in the British Pharmacopoeia.

For more information, visit the Medicines & Healthcare products Regulatory Agency website.