Applications of Ion Meters in Biotechnology and Bioprocessing


Ion meters are devices that measure the concentration of ions in a solution. They are used in a variety of applications, such as water quality testing, soil analysis, and industrial process control. Ion meters typically consist of an ion selective electrode (ISE), a reference electrode, and a meter. The ISE is a sensor that reacts to the presence of a specific ion. The reference electrode provides a stable voltage against which the ISE can be measured. The meter converts the signal from the ISE into a concentration measurement.

Depending on specific features and functions, GAO Tek’s Ion meters are sometimes referred to as Ion selective electrode (ISE), Ion-selective potentiometry, Potentiometric analysis, Ion-selective analysis.


GAO Tek’s Ion meters have the following applications in biotechnology and bioprocessing:

  • Fermentation Monitoring and Control: In bioprocessing, ion meters can be used to monitor and control ion concentrations such as pH and dissolved oxygen (DO) in fermentation processes. pH is a critical parameter that affects the growth of microorganisms and the production of metabolites. Ion meters can help maintain the desired pH level by detecting and adjusting the concentration of hydrogen ions. Similarly, DO measurement is crucial for aerobic fermentation processes, and ion meters can provide real-time monitoring to optimize oxygen availability.
  • Nutrient Analysis and Optimization: Ion meters are used to measure the concentrations of essential nutrients such as potassium, calcium, and magnesium in growth media. These ions are essential for cell growth and metabolism. By accurately measuring and controlling nutrient concentrations, biotechnologists can optimize cell culture conditions and enhance product yield in bioprocesses.
  • Wastewater Treatment: In bioprocessing and biotechnology applications, wastewater with varying ion concentrations may be generated. Ion meters can be employed to monitor and control the levels of ions in wastewater before discharge or for recycling. This helps ensure compliance with environmental regulations and minimize the impact on the environment.
  • Bioreactor Scale-Up: Scaling up bioprocesses from laboratory to industrial scale requires careful monitoring and control of various parameters, including ion concentrations. Ion meters can play a crucial role in maintaining consistent ion levels during scale-up, ensuring reproducibility and optimizing product yield.
  • Biomedical Research: Ion meters are used in various biomedical research applications, including the study of ion channels, membrane potential, and cellular signaling. These measurements provide insights into cellular physiology, which is essential for understanding disease mechanisms and developing targeted therapies.
  • Enzyme Kinetics and Activity Assays: Ion meters can be employed in enzymatic studies to monitor changes in ion concentrations during enzyme-substrate reactions. This information helps researchers analyze enzyme kinetics, study enzyme inhibition or activation, and optimize reaction conditions.
  • Pharmaceutical Production: Ion meters are used to monitor and control ion concentrations in various stages of pharmaceutical production, such as fermentation, purification, and formulation. Accurate control of ion concentrations can influence the stability and quality of pharmaceutical products.
  • Biocatalysis and Bioconversion: Ion meters are useful in biocatalysis and bioconversion processes where specific ions can affect reaction rates and product formation. By monitoring and adjusting ion concentrations, researchers can optimize enzymatic reactions and enhance product yields.
  • Microbial Fuel Cells: Ion meters are utilized in microbial fuel cell research to monitor ion concentrations that influence the efficiency of electron transfer between microorganisms and electrodes. These measurements help improve the performance of microbial fuel cells for sustainable energy production.
  • Food and Beverage Industry: Ion meters play a role in quality control and optimization of ion concentrations in food and beverage production processes. For instance, in the brewing industry, ion meters are used to monitor and adjust water composition to achieve desired flavors and characteristics in the final product.


More information on Ion meters and their applications in other industries can be found on this page. Water Ion Meters.This category page lists related products Benchtop Ion Meter for Cadmium Ion (Memory Storage).

Complying with Industry Standards

GAO Tek’s Ion meters comply or help our customers comply with the biotechnology and bioprocessing standards such as

Food and Drug Administration (FDA)

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA):

Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA)

United States Pharmacopeia (USP)

Department of Agriculture (USDA)

National Institutes of Health (NIH)

Biosafety in Microbiological and Biomedical Laboratories (BMBL)


Complying with Government Regulations

GAO Tek’s Ion meters comply or help our customers comply with the U.S. government regulations such as

  • Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA)
  • Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) – Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA)
  • National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) – NIST Handbook 44
  • United States Pharmacopeia (USP) – USP Chapter <1058> – Analytical Instrument Qualification
  • Current Good Manufacturing Practices (cGMP) – 21 CFR Part 210 and 211
  • FDA Process Validation Guidance
  • Biosafety in Microbiological and Biomedical Laboratories (BMBL)


GAO Tek’s Ion meters comply or help our clients comply with the Canadian regulations such as

  • Health Canada – Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) Guidelines for Drugs
  • Health Canada – Guidelines for Environmental Monitoring of Pharmaceutical Manufacturing Facilities
  • Health Canada – Guidance Document for Disinfectant Drugs
  • Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) – Plant and Animal Health Import Regulations
  • Canadian Environmental Protection Act (CEPA) – Environmental Emergency Regulations
  • Transport Canada – Transportation of Dangerous Goods Act
  • Standards Council of Canada (SCC) – ISO/IEC 17025 – General Requirements for the Competence of Testing and Calibration Laboratories


GAO Tek’s Ion meters comply or help our clients comply with the Mexican regulations such as

  • Ley General de Equilibrio Ecológico y la Protección al Ambiente (LGEEPA)
  • Ley General de Salud (LGS)
  • Reglamento de Insumos para la Salud (RIS)
  • Norma Oficial Mexicana NOM-059-SEMARNAT-2010
  • Norma Oficial Mexicana NOM-004-ZOO-1994
  • Norma Oficial Mexicana NOM-147-SEMARNAT/SSA1-2004
  • Norma Oficial Mexicana NOM-164-SEMARNAT-2012


GAO Tek’s Ion meters comply or help our clients comply with the European regulations such as

  • Regulation (EC) No 1829/2003
  • Regulation (EC) No 1830/2003
  • Regulation (EC) No 1946/2003
  • Regulation (EU) 2015/2283
  • Directive 2001/18/EC
  • Directive 2009/41/EC
  • Directive 98/81/EC
  • Directive 2009/28/EC
  • Directive 2003/30/EC
  • Regulation (EC) No 1069/2009

Case Studies of Ion meters in biotechnology and bioprocessing

Ion meters are sometimes called as Ion-selective electrodes (ISEs), Ion-specific electrodes, Ion concentration meters, Ionic meters, Potentiometric ion sensors, Electrochemical ion sensors, Ion activity meters, Ion measurement devices, Ion-sensitive meters, Ion probe meters, ISE meters, pH/ion meters (since pH meters often incorporate ion-selective electrodes), Analytical ion meters, Chemical ion sensors, Ion-sensitive field-effect transistors (ISFETs) – A specific type of ion-sensitive device.

Here are some practical examples of using Ion meters in biotechnology and bioprocessing:

Monitoring and controlling pH and nutrient concentrations in a bioreactor used for the production of biofuels from algae.

Optimizing ion levels to enhance the yield of monoclonal antibody production in a pharmaceutical bioprocessing facility.

Maintaining precise pH levels during the fermentation of agricultural waste for the production of enzymes used in animal feed.

Monitoring and adjusting ion concentrations to ensure consistent fermentation conditions in a brewery producing craft beer.

Tracking and controlling ion concentrations in a wastewater treatment facility connected to a biotechnology research center.

Regulating ion levels for efficient biogas production from organic waste in an anaerobic digestion plant.

Monitoring and optimizing ion concentrations for the growth of microorganisms used in the production of probiotics.

Managing ion levels in a hydroponic cultivation system for high-value crops like medicinal herbs.

Ensuring accurate pH control and ion levels in a lab-scale bioreactor used for the cultivation of genetically modified yeast strains.

Monitoring ion concentrations during the fermentation of agricultural products for the production of organic acids.


GAO RFID Inc. GAO RFID, a sister company of GAO Tek Inc., is ranked as a top 10 RFID supplier in the world. Its RFID, BLE, and IoT products have also been widely used in biotechnology and bioprocessing.

Research, Technology & Professional Services Industries | RFID Solutions

RFID Systems By Industry

Use of Ion meters with Leading Software and Cloud Services in biotechnology and bioprocessing

GAO Tek has used or has facilitated its customers to use GAO’s ion meters with some of the leading software and cloud services in their applications. Examples of such leading software and cloud services include


  • LabX Software Suite by Mettler Toledo
  • Thermo Scientific™ Orion Star™ Software
  • Hanna Instruments HI900PC Application Software
  • Metrohm MagIC Net Ion Chromatography Software
  • YSI KOR Software Suite by Xylem
  • HORIBA LabSpec 6 Spectroscopy Software
  • Thermo Fisher Scientific Ion Analysis Software
  • Metrohm MagIC Net Ion Chromatography Analysis Software
  • Manufacturer-specific data analysis modules
  • Custom data analysis scripts and tools
  • Cloud-based LIMS for ion meter data integration
  • Cloud platforms for remote monitoring and control
  • Cloud-based data analysis platforms
  • Cloud-enabled data analysis tools and libraries


GAO Tek’s Ion meters and their applications in other industries are listed on this page. Life Science Equipment in Biotechnology Industry. Other related products can be found at this category page Life Science Test Equipment .


Meeting Customers’ Demands

Large Choice of Products

In order to satisfy the diversified needs of their corporate customers, GAO Tek Inc. and its sister company GAO RFID Inc. together offer a wide choice of testing and measurement devices, network products, RFID, BLE, IoT, and drones.

Fast Delivery

To shorten the delivery to our customers, GAO has maintained a large stock of its products and is able to ship overnight within continental U.S. and Canada.

Local to Our Customers

We are located in both the U.S. and Canada. We travel to customers’ premises if necessary. Hence, we provide a very strong local support to our customers in the U.S. and Canada. Furthermore, we have built partnerships with some integrators, consulting firms and other service providers in different cities to further strengthen our services. Here are some of the service providers in “Industry” we have worked with to serve our joint customers:

GAO Has Many Customers in Biotechnology and Bioprocessing

The products from both GAO Tek Inc. and GAO RFID Inc. have been widely used in biotechnology and bioprocessing by many customers, including some leading companies. Here is more information on applications of GAO RFID Inc.’s products in biotechnology and bioprocessing.

Research, Technology & Professional Services Industries | RFID Solutions

RFID Systems By Industry

Here are some of GAO’s customers in biotechnology and bioprocessing:

  • Biogen
  • Pfizer
  • Merck & Co. (MSD)
  • Regeneron Pharmaceuticals
  • Vertex Pharmaceuticals
  • Thermo Fisher Scientific
  • Bristol Myers Squibb
  • Gilead Sciences
  • Moderna
  • Amgen
  • Eli Lilly and Company
  • Abbott Laboratories
  • Baxter International
  • AbbVie
  • Beckman Coulter
  • Stryker Corporation
  • John Deere (agricultural biotechnology)
  • Monsanto (now part of Bayer)
  • Bio-Rad Laboratories
  • Invitae Corporation
  • Johnson & Johnson
  • Celgene (now part of Bristol Myers Squibb)
  • Genentech (a member of the Roche Group)
  • Alcon (a Novartis company)
  • Medtronic
  • Cargill (agricultural biotechnology)
  • Becton, Dickinson and Company (BD)
  • Gulfstream Aerospace Corporation
  • Hologic
  • Agilent Technologies
  • Genentech
  • Illumina
  • Tesla (related to biotechnology in electric vehicles and energy storage)
  • BioMarin Pharmaceutical
  • Agilent Technologies
  • Allergan (now part of AbbVie)
  • Adaptive Biotechnologies
  • Apotex
  • STEMCELL Technologies
  • Bausch Health Companies (formerly Valeant Pharmaceuticals)
  • Neovasc
  • Therapure Biopharma
  • Novo Nordisk Canada
  • QLT Inc.
  • Alectos Therapeutics
  • Profound Medical
  • Aurora Cannabis (in the field of agricultural biotechnology)




Regeneron Pharmaceuticals


Thermo Fisher

Bristol Myeres Squibb

Gilead Science





Aligent Tech



Novo  Nordisk



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