Gilson Mission & History


THE GILSON STORY: FROM THE BEGINNING – MAKING LAB LIFE EASIER


The Gilson legacy began in the 1940s, while Dr. Warren Gilson was a faculty member at the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine. He began to design and develop specialized medical electronics and instruments that were not commercially available. His driving motivation was to invent and improve on lab instruments to make research easier for scientists. One of his first efforts was a cathode ray recorder—a moving paper camera that recorded images from a cathode ray tube. It was later used around the world in cardiac catheterization labs. By the early 1950s, Gilson developed an electroencephalograph (EEG), a device that records the brain’s electrical signals for diagnosing epilepsy, strokes, and tumors. He also focused on the oxygraph, a respiration management system that measures oxygen consumption to study the effectiveness of anti-metabolites in cancer research.

Through the years, Gilson’s focus has broadened from specialized instruments for physiological applications to solutions for liquid handling, purification and extraction applications. Gilson has
specialized in translating manual processes into automated solutions, allowing researchers to get
scientific results faster, while improving the traceability and reproducibility of their experiments.     

Today, Gilson remains family owned, and manufactures purification systems, automated liquid handlers, pipettes (including the world-renowned PIPETMAN® brand of pipettes), fraction collectors, solid phase extraction (SPE) systems, detectors, injectors, and much more. From academia to industry, Gilson
delivers high-quality, dependable solutions to researchers around the world.

Since 1957, Gilson’s world headquarters has been located in Middleton, WI. Gilson has expanded and opened new Centers of Excellence to keep up with global demand. In 1963, Gilson opened a manufacturing facility, Gilson S.A.S. northeast of Paris in Villiers-le-Bel, France. In 2013, Pure Lab Plastics, a laboratory plastics manufacturer, joined the Gilson organization and in early 2017, another manufacturing facility opened in Vannes, France, Gilson Purification, S.A.S.  Gilson also has local sales and service teams that include a vast distribution network in countries throughout North and South America, Europe, Middle East, Africa, (EMEA) and Asia Pacific (APAC).