Both blood and tissue are collected from participants, when possible. Pre-surgical blood is preferred; however it is collected at the convenience of the participant often at the same time as clinical blood work. It is then processed by separating it into blood derivatives such as serum, plasma, red blood cells and buffy coats and stored at -80oC. Urine and saliva may also be collected from some participants.
Tissue samples from surgery, not required for diagnosis, are collected in local area hospitals and are snap frozen in liquid nitrogen or preserved in formalin. The time from devitalization to freezing is always recorded and is ideally within 20 minutes. Tissue in formalin is used to prepare Formalin Fixed Paraffin Embedded (FFPE) blocks. Snap frozen tissue is stored in liquid nitrogen vapour in cryofreezers.
The quality and integrity of biospecimens is a critical component of biobanking operations. The biospecimens are essential for biomarker discovery and consistent quality is necessary to achieve reproducible experimental results. Therefore the ACRB adheres to the CTRNet SOPs for the collection, processing and preservation of samples, and is continuously evaluating biosample quality and expanding the list of quality measures. Quality Control information is available to investigators upon request.
Current quality measures include: