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European Biobank Week: Biobanking for health innovation

Biobanks serve a common goal: to improve understanding of patients, diseases and health; and to deliver the best individualized care. Sample quality is paramount to achieving that goal. Without confidence in the integrity of biosamples, there can be no confidence in the results.  To support this effort, we are pleased to announce our participation at the upcoming European Biobank Week (EBW) in Vienna, Austria.

Topic: Biobanking and Biorepository, Content: Blog

Factors Affecting Participation Rates in Population-Based Biobanking

A systematic review and meta-analysis of baseline participation rates and their determinants performed by van Zon et al. (2016) found that recruitment methods and design affect participation rates.1 Population-based biobanks are essential platforms for innovation and knowledge generation in health care research, specifically in regards to how we prevent, treat and cure widespread diseases. Therefore, willingness to participate from the population is pivotal if biobank studies are to continue to contribute to public health research.

Topic: Biobanking and Biorepository, Topic: Public..........

How to Maintain Sample Integrity During Sample Transfer

The data that lies within your biospecimen collections holds the keys to your research and, as we’ve discussed previously, it’s imperative to maintain proper temperature to ensure sample integrity.  This is a challenge ordinarily, but even more so when attempting to transfer samples.

Topic: Biobanking and Biorepository, Topic: Public..........

Flawed Study Design—the Other “Pre-Analytical Variable” in Biomarker Research

Why are we failing to find biomarkers for early detection of disease?  Throughout our blog we write a great deal about biospecimen integrity and emphasize the control of pre-analytical variability in biospecimens. However, the highest quality biospecimens are wasted in the search for biomarkers if the study design is flawed. And the literature on biomarker discovery studies is filled with examples of poor study design, creating an overabundance of false positives that cannot be validated.

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

[Video] Semi-Automated Biobanking: Delivering quality samples in less time

The holy grail in the biobanking industry is all about maximizing the value of biospecimens to deliver new therapies. Thus, there's now more pressure on biobanks to deliver samples that are in better condition, with better annotation, and with a more rapid turnaround time. In order to support our clients in achieving their aims in maximizing the value of their sample collections, we have installed a LiCONiC Semi-Automated Biobank (SAB) to manage the increased demands on sample utilization. To learn more and see the LiCONiC system in action, check out our video below!

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

Amazing Samples: Water

Water – the universal solvent. The all known life on our planet requires it to function, not directly because of water itself, as much as its ability to transport other compounds and ions, and facilitate metabolic reactions. That’s why human civilization itself is based on water, both in determining where people settled, as well as whether they live.

Topic: Biobanking and Biorepository, Topic: Amazin..........

Safeguarding Data Across Biotech Global Boundaries

In an era of “big data,” companies across all industries are collecting consumer information to provide effective solutions to problems or better market their products. Industry watchdog groups have long been concerned about the implications of data collection on consumer privacy. These issues become even more complex when conducting transactions across international borders. A recently drafted European Union-United States Privacy Shield agreement is intended to clarify the privacy principles U.S. organizations must meet to comply with EU privacy laws.

Topic: Biobanking and Biorepository, Content: Blog

The Microbiome of the Skin and Beyond: The MoBE

Our skin is not only our largest organ, and the surface through which we experience the world, it is also a complex ecosystem in its own right. Grice et al (2008)1 estimated that more than a million micro-organisms of more than a hundred distinct species reside on a square centimeter of skin. The recent research into the microbiome of the skin shows that we have not only a great diversity of microorganisms in our skin microbiome, but also a high degree of variation from individual to individual. And although research into the interactions between the skin microbiome and dermal and other disorders is fairly new, it has become clear that the more diverse the microbiome, the healthier the skin.

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

Amazing Samples: Buccal Up for Some Cheeky Research

Most researchers know about buccal cells  the easily sloughed-off cells from the inside of the cheek. The collection of these cells is relatively non-invasive, which gives it many of the same advantages as spit and mucus that we’ve already discussed. Because of this, many studies, including some in social science, utilize buccal swabs to increase the amount of data they’re collecting.

However, even if it’s popular, don’t let that diminish its value. From biomarker studies to stem cell research, buccal cells have proven time and time again to be a hugely useful source of biological data. Last time in our Amazing Samples blog series, we scratched the surface of research with skin cells. This time, buccal up and get ready for a cheekier kind of Amazing Sample!

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

World Stem Cells & Regenerative Medicine Congress


We are pleased to announce our participation at the 11th Annual World Stem Cells & Regenerative Medicine Congress on May 18-20 in London, England. In the past, this event focused on developments in stem cell therapies and innovations within regenerative medicine. As the industry progresses, this year's conference will focus on the cell therapies that have made it to market, the innovations of academia and universities, and the use of stem cells for drug discovery. Additionally, this year's event will be co-located with World Precision Medicine Congress and the Cord Blood World Europe.

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

InsideAccess: Maintaining Inventory Accuracy

In an age of electronic databases and barcode scanning, maintaining inventory accuracy should be simple. Vials are put in a freezer and the location is recorded in a database. How could sample storage be complicated?

It’s true that technology has improved efficiency and accuracy in the management of all types of inventory. However, whether the inventory in question is lego blocks or vials of blood, inventory management is more complicated than it seems. Even with the most sophisticated electronic tools, multiple challenges remain.

Last August we introduced a new content series called InsideAccess to give you inside look into our operations and processes. In this edition of InsideAccess we'll take a look at the challenges involved in maintaining inventory accuracy and some of the tools we use in working toward our goal of absolute, 100%, accuracy in our operations.

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

Pooling Biospecimen Collections into “Synthetic” Cohorts to Promote Personalized Medicine

Large longitudinal studies have become impractical on many levels. At well over $100 per patient enrolled, the traditional large cohort study has become cost-prohibitive. Nor is cost the only factor: another is time. By their very nature, cohort studies can take decades to yield benefits, both at the individual as well as the population level.1 However, these studies are still needed both for public health research and to support the implementation of personalized medicine.

Topic: Biobanking and Biorepository, Topic: Public..........