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Corporate Overview

CIL History


Since its founding in 1981, CIL and its people have been committed to high-quality stable isotope-labeled products, superior customer service, innovative new products and a breadth of product lines. 

  • Business founded by Joel C. Bradley, PhD, MIT, to provide isotopically labeled research compounds and NMR solvents to the new and developing commercial market for stable isotope-labeled compounds.
  • Moved from Cambridge, MA, to larger laboratory space in Woburn, MA, to accommodate the expanding staff and laboratories.
  • Provided PCB and PCDF standards in response to transformer fires in Binghamton, NY, and San Francisco, CA, which emitted PCBs and PCDFs into the atmosphere.
  • Established international presence with first major sales representative in Europe.
  • Developed standards for EPA assessment of the contamination at Times Beach, MO, which was the “largest civilian exposure to dioxin in the US.”
  • Founded CIL Japan and established offices in Osaka and Tokyo.
  • Raised expansion capital in an initial public offering on the Securities market in the UK.
  • Construction began on $3.2 million 13C-separation facility in Xenia, OH, the largest facility of its kind at the time.
  • Supplied standards for epidemiological study of long-term effects of dioxins found in Agent Orange.
  • Acquired the stable isotope division of ICN Biomedicals, a competitor in stable isotope research products.
  • Established the first field sales force in the industry in the US.
  • Invested in the first super-conducting FT/NMR spectrometer to match the quality assurance capabilities of our best customers.
  • Purchased a second super-conducting FT/NMR spectrometer.
  • First produced 13C PAH standards.
  • Acquired the assets of MSD Isotopes from Merck Frosst of Canada, a major competitor and the oldest stable isotope company in the industry.
  • Awarded 13C products to research community in the first CIL Research Grant Program to promote novel applications of 13C. 
  • Built state-of-the-art laboratories at its new site in Andover, MA, to bring all laboratory operations under one roof and to provide space for expansion.
  • Implemented cGMP programs.
  • Established biochemical synthesis facility in Canada.
  • Introduced first generation of cell growth media.
  • Constructed first 18O columns.
  • 13C urea manufactured to cGMP.
  • CIL catalog introduced as evidence in the OJ Simpson “Trial of the Century.”
  • Significant expansion of production capacity of 13C separation facility in Ohio to meet the growing demand, again the largest facility of its kind at the time.


  • Development of BioExpress®, second-generation cell growth media.
  • Corporate merger with Otsuka Pharmaceuticals to facilitate a joint development of certain medical diagnostic products. CIL continues operations with the same executives and key managers and with an independent Board of Directors.
  • Former Senator John Glenn infused with CIL amino acids for tracer studies during shuttle mission.
  • Developed 13C PBDE standards.
  • Construction began on $6 million 18O separation facility in Xenia, OH, to meet the rapidly expanding needs of positron emission tomography (PET) and the metabolism research markets, again the largest in the world.
  • Synthesized 13C-labeled cyclodiene pestides for CDC/NHANES exploring human pesticide exposure in families of agricultural workers.
  • Completed construction on 18O-separation facility, becoming world's largest manufacturer.
  • Established close partnership with Euriso-Top SA, a French stable-isotope company.
  • Acquired Tracer Technologies' inventory of metabolic substrates.
  • Completed second expansion of 18O-separation facility, increasing production capacity to 250 kg.
  • Collaboration established with Protein Structure Factory (PSF).
  • CIL and Cerilliant collaborate on chemical weapon
    standards for Homeland Security after 9/11.
  • Introduced insect cell growth media.
  • Collaboration established with Silantes, for RNA/DNA products.
  • Provided dioxin standards for the forensic analysis on the poisoning of Viktor Yushchenko, president of Ukraine.
  • Completed 15,000-square-foot expansion of QC, production and cGMP laboratories.
  • Established Otsuka, Japanese-based sales group.
  • Increased cGMP API manufacturing.
  • Acquired nuclear medicine chemical manufacturer Advanced Biochemical Compounds (ABX) of Dresden, Germany.
  • Introduced mammalian cell growth media.
  • Became sponsors of triennial ISMAR prize.
  • Collaboration established with Cassia, LLC founded by Dr. Jamie Williamson, for RNA/DNA products.
  • Began distribution of NMR tubes for NORELL.
  • Acquired M-fold Biotech GmbH.
  • Announced collaborative venture with Membrane Receptor Technologies, LLC (MRT).
  • CIL and CellFree Sciences (CFS) announced distribution agreement.
  • Acquired Spectra Stable Isotopes (SSI).
  • Developed environmental standard for the Gulf Oil Crisis.
  • CIL expanded the 18O production capacity by almost 100 kg/year in Xenia, OH.


  • CIL expanded the 18O facility in Xenia, OH, bringing the production capacity up to more than 420 kg of 18O per year.
  • CIL began construction of a new 13C separation system in Xenia, OH. This system is expected to be completed in the summer of 2014 and will increase capacity to more than 420 kg of 13C capacity per year.
  • CIL has constructed the only large capacity non-governmental D2O enrichment columns in the world located at its CIS facility. 
  • Moved corporate headquarters to Tewksbury, MA.
  • Built new state-of-the-art cGMP facility.
  • C2N Diagnostics announced Collaborative Research and Global Exclusive Supplier Agreement with CIL.


  • CIL announced an exclusive worldwide commercial supply agreement with Nexomics Biosciences, a structural biology and protein production contract research organization, to provide isotope-labeled proteins to life science research organizations.


  • CIL and MRM Proteomics Inc., a leading supplier of kits and services for quantitative proteomics, announced an exclusive worldwide commercial supply agreement. 
  • CIL begins working with IROA Technologies LLC to develop and distribute IROA® Biochemical Quantitation Kits


History | Cambridge Isotope Laboratories
stable isotope, stable isotopes, isotope labeling, isotopically labeled research compounds, NMR Solvents, stable isotope-labeled compounds, PCB, PCDF standards, 13C Separation facility, standards, dioxins, ICN Biomedicals, stable isotope research products, 13C PAH standards, Research Grant Program, Travel Award, biochemical synthesis facility, cell growth media, SILAC Amino Acids, protein standards, SILAC, NMR Tubes, Nucleic Acid Synthesis, Cell-Free Synthesis, alpha keto acids, deuteratred compounds, biomolecular nor, Hyperpolarization, Protein Reagents, Quantitative Proteomics, Nuclear medicine, foot testing, membrane proteins, Protein Expression, Peptide Synthesis
Since its founding in 1981, CIL and its people have been committed to high quality stable isotope labeled products, superior customer service, innovative new products and a breadth of product lines.