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Top Translational Researchers of 2014

Nature recently released its list of the top 20 translational researchers for 2014, highlighting scientists whose work and patents facilitate new discoveries and advances in medicine and healthcare. The publication ranked biotech's top translational researchers according to patenting activity, using information supplied by the patent analytics firm, IP Checkups. This research directly impacts the role of personalized medicine and will help to identify the future wave of biotherapeutics and diagnostic tools in our industry. In this blog we'll review some of the research from five of these top researchers, and learn how their research is shaping our future.

Topic: Biobanking and Biorepository, Topic: Clinic..........

The Other Glass Ceiling: Maintaining Cell Therapies at -135°C

Maintaining biological materials used in cell therapies at temperatures lower than -135°C is much more complicated than simply freezing samples.

The goal of cryopreservation is to prepare stocks of cells for preservation and storage, which prevents the need to maintain all cell lines in culture all the time. Cryogenic storage is especially valuable when dealing with cells presenting a limited lifespan. Even though the technique keeps cells and tissues at very low temperatures, advanced cryopreservation strategies are required to keep these cells viable after thawing. Cryopreservation techniques and equipment focus on bringing samples to very low temperatures without causing additional damage from the formation of ice and other effects of storing living matter at sub-zero temperatures. 

Topic: Biobanking and Biorepository, Topic: Cell T..........

Latest Cell Therapy and Biobanking Discoveries to be Discussed at Key Events

We are excited to share our participation at four upcoming industry conferences that will focus on the latest cell therapy and biobanking discoveries.

Topic: Biobanking and Biorepository, Topic: Cell T..........

Explore the Virtual Biobank

Sample integrity is essential to the success of every biobanking project. So is the ability to easily share information designed to accelerate lifesaving discoveries. Various types of unwanted pre-analytical variables can be introduced at numerous points in the life of a sample, beginning at the time it is collected from the donor, through shipping, receiving/inventory, laboratory processing, during storage and subsequent retrieval for analysis.

On the Thermo Scientific's biobanking community we recently introduced a virtual biobank which allows users to explore critical points in the biobank workflow from collection through distribution. This tool offers a hands-on way to gain a better understanding of each aspect of the workflow, and ultimately conveys the importance of a valued partner that can preserve your samples, track your inventory, streamline your productivity, and help you meet laboratory challenges.

This blog discusses some fun facts about biobanking as well as additional information about each step in the workflow. Let's explore the virtual biobank!

Topic: Biobanking and Biorepository, Topic: Clinic..........

Introducing InsideAccess: An Insider's Look at Making the Most of Near Misses

In the fast paced environment that we work in it's common to follow a well-rehearsed routine and stick to it. However, when handling valuable samples, this cannot be the case. Continuous process improvement is at the core of our business and a value that we work towards diligently. Oftentimes, these process improvement projects occur behind the scenes, but prove to have the most outstanding results for our clients. Thus, we're introducing a new series called InsideAccess. This new content will give you an inside look into our operations and processes to showcase the work that we're doing internally to ensure our external operations run smoothly.

In this first InsideAccess, Nick Fera, Operations Manager, and Mahzad Mehrinfar, Project Director, share their process for capturing and learning from near misses. Below is a short introduction to how their team faced a large challenge and developed a solution, which resulted in an exceptional level of accuracy in fulfilling orders for shipment.  

Topic: Biobanking and Biorepository, Content: Insi..........

New Gene Therapy to Boost Immunity to Cancer

Early in the spring of 2015, researchers from the Imperial College London revealed the discovery of a new protein. The research team believes this protein, named lymphocyte expansion molecule (LEM), enhances the immune system when fighting viruses and cancers. Helping with the research was Harvard Medical SchoolETH Zurich, and the Queen Mary University of London.

Now, scientists and doctors from Imperial, who were study leaders for the LEM protein discovery, are looking to develop a gene therapy that will boost the human immune system’s infection-fighting cells so they can be powerful enough to stop or treat viruses and cancers in humans. Professor Philip Ashton-Rickardt, from the Department of Medicine at Imperial is hoping this early research will soon develop as part of the physician’s armor when fighting viruses and cancers.

Topic: Cell Therapy Solutions, Content: Blog

From Point A to B in the USA: Transporting Dangerous Goods

There are many things to consider when shipping dangerous goods; the type of material, how it's being transported, and the governing body all play an integral role in getting your material from Point A to Point B.

At Fisher BioServices, we are well versed in the management of dangerous goods; ranging from kit production to transportation. In this blog, we'll touch on some of the important information associated with dangerous goods, how they are transported, and the importance of personnel training.

Topic: Cold-Chain Logistics, Topic: Clinical Trial..........

Personnel Safety When Cryopreserving Biological Material

To maintain biological integrity and prevent sample degradation, biosamples can be cryopreserved. Since this requires very low temperatures, the correct preparation of these biospecimens for cryopreservation is critical; particularly when the samples are intended for use in downstream analysis such as immunological assays for detecting cell surface markers.

In our previous blog, 5 Factors to Consider When Storing Samples at Low Temperatures, we identified various procedures including proper handling, preparation, freezing, retrieval, and thawing measures that must be followed when cryopreserving samples to maintain cell viability. However, while following process to maintain sample integrity is an integral part of cryopreservation, there are also specific safety requirements that must be followed.

A recent blog by Inside Biobanking, addressed some of the hazards associated with biological material management at cryogenic temperatures. In this blog, let's explore how staff and biobank managers can ensure personnel safety by following these safety guidelines.

Topic: Biobanking and Biorepository, Topic: Cold-C..........

Liquid Biopsies Used in Personalized Medicine Represent Disruptive Innovation

Time magazine considers liquid biopsies one of the top five investment opportunities of 2015. Investors considering new developments in healthcare like ideas that have the potential to change existing treatment protocols or dramatically impact an entire industry segment. These investors look for “disruptive innovation” or “impact investing” and many are actively engaged in helping bring the new personalized medicine break-through technology to market.

The liquid biopsy is one example of a relatively new idea that has the potential to change the life sciences industry and further scientific discovery. 

In this blog, let's explore the potential benefits of liquid biopsies as a minimally invasive methodology. We'll also consider the challenges associated with the technology and explore how it may impact treatment protocols and strategies.

Topic: Biobanking and Biorepository, Topic: Labora..........

Inn It for the Kids III: Supporting Families Impacted by Rare Diseases

When tragedy strikes, people rely on the comfort and support of others to help them navigate through the difficult time. That's what The Children's Inn at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) provides to families with children who are suffering from rare diseases, illnesses, and genetic diseases. The Inn is a home away from home for families while children undergo treatment at the NIH. It provides a safe, child-centric environment that offers the comforts of home at no cost to families. This helps alleviate some of the stress that adults encounter to pay for lodging and instead allows families to concentrate their energy on the child's well-being. The Inn is also a place where kids can feel like kids, despite their illness. As their website states, "While the NIH takes care of the child's medical needs, The Inn tends to the child's heart, soul and spirit."

Content: Blog

Curing Crohn's Disease: How Data and the Gut Microbiota Proteome Are Working Together

As previously discussed on Thermo Fisher Scientific's Accelerating Proteomic's blog, research into the debilitating inflammatory bowel condition called Crohn’s disease has identified the gut bacterial community as a key factor in the disease’s pathogenesis and continuation. Despite this, there is still no reliable clinical biomarker to speed investigation, monitoring and diagnosis for patients. Because the symptoms of Crohn’s disease are not unique and are shared among many inflammatory bowel diseases, diagnosis frequently requires many different and invasive clinical tests.

In this blog, let's explore how Juste et al. (2014) used the gut microbiota as a starting point in their study exploring the intestinal microbiome for prospective biomarkers1 and how a new platform established by The Crohn's & Colitis Foundation of America (CCFA) may help speed the process towards a potential cure to this disease.

Topic: Biobanking and Biorepository, Topic: Labora..........

[Video] Biorepository Services Help Discover Correlation Between DDT and Breast Cancer

DDT, once hailed as the miracle pesticide, was sprayed on crops, trees, and even inside houses throughout the United States in the 1950s and 60s. Though banned in 1972 and not used in the US for more than four decades, DDT has long been a suspect in the risk of breast cancer. New research shows that exposure, even from a long time ago, could be a contributing factor in the development of breast cancer; a connection scientists have been unable to make convincingly until now.

Courtesy of NBC Nightly News

Content: Video, Topic: Biobanking and Biorepositor..........