John Wicks – Managing Director
I began my professional life working in Clinical Biochemistry at Guy’s Hospital. Over 13 years there, I developed a particular interest in the uses of therapeutic drugs and in testing drugs of abuse. In 1984 I was invited to set up an analytical toxicology facility in the Middle East, which kept me occupied for the next 5 years. I then returned to the UK to manage a clinical trials laboratory in Cardiff. While working in Cardiff, I was introduced to the idea of hair testing for drugs. The concept was developed into a service laboratory that was launched as TrichoTech Ltd in 1997. Working alongside Dr Lolita Tsanaclis, I grew the company to the point that we were analysing samples from all over the world. In 2007, TrichoTech became part of the Concateno Group of Companies, and I left the company 1 year later, handing over to a new management team. Cansford Laboratories is the result of all my previous work, and our new facility in Cardiff is making use of the technological advances that have emerged since my days with TrichoTech.
Dr Lolita Tsanaclis – Scientific Director
Since 1993, I have been developing methods for the analysis of drugs in hair. I was one of the founding directors and shareholders of TrichoTech Ltd, where I developed a full set of procedures, then devised and implemented a Laboratory Quality Manual. In 2004, TrichoTech become the first UK laboratory testing hair samples for drugs to gain UKAS accreditation to ISO 17025. By 2008, when I left TrichoTech, we were performing over 100,000 tests on 15,000 hair samples per year, as well as conducting research and publishing several scientific papers. My goal for Cansford, when we started it in 2010, was to use all my experience to develop novel ways of processing samples and improve the technology of hair testing so that we will deliver accurate analyses in a much shorter time scale. We expected to be able to pass on the cost savings to our customers. I am very proud to say that we have achieved the original goal. We now deliver the highest quality service for drug assessment and issue results within 3 days, at no extra costs to our customers!