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Cell Tissue Bank. 2007;8(4):287-95. Epub 2007 Mar 27.

Quality control of human tissues--experience from the Indiana University Cancer Center-Lilly Research Labs human tissue bank.

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  • 1Lilly Research Labs and Indiana University Cancer Center, Indianapolis, IN 46285, USA.


The success of molecular research and its applications in both the clinical and basic research arenas is strongly dependent on the collection, handling, storage, and quality control of fresh human tissue samples. This tissue bank was set up to bank fresh surgically obtained human tissue using a Clinical Annotated Tissue Database (CATD) in order to capture the associated patient clinical data and demographics using a one way patient encryption scheme to protect patient identification. In this study, we determined that high quality of tissue samples is imperative for both genomic and proteomic molecular research. This paper also contains a brief compilation of the literature involved in the patient ethics, patient informed consent, patient de-identification, tissue collection, processing, and storage as well as basic molecular research generated from the tissue bank using good clinical practices. The current applicable rules, regulations, and guidelines for handling human tissues are briefly discussed. More than 6,610 cancer patients have been consented (97% of those that were contacted by the consenter) and 16,800 tissue specimens have been banked from these patients in 9 years. All samples collected in the bank were QC'd by a pathologist. Approximately 1,550 tissue samples have been requested for use in basic, clinical, and/or biomarker cancer research studies. Each tissue aliquot removed from the bank for a research study were evaluated by a second H&E, if the samples passed the QC, they were submitted for genomic and proteomic molecular analysis/study. Approximately 75% of samples evaluated were of high histologic quality and used for research studies. Since 2003, we changed the patient informed consent to allow the tissue bank to gather more patient clinical follow-up information. Ninety two percent of the patients (1,865 patients) signed the new informed consent form and agreed to be re-contacted for follow-up information on their disease state. In addition, eighty five percent of patients (1,584) agreed to be re-contacted to provide a biological fluid sample to be used for biomarker research.

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