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Biobanks: Perfect Model for Managing Millions of Samples

High-quality human tissue samples have become the gold standard for biomedical research, and reliable access to such material is a critical resource for many companies. In addition, the rapid growth of translational research and personalized medicine has further increased the demand for human biological samples. You can also look for biobank via

Biobanks and tissue suppliers have grown exponentially in response to this increasing demand for samples and there now exists a broad range of suppliers, ranging from niche collections that specialize in one disease area to commercial suppliers. Biobanks have been on the increase since the 1970s, with a growth rate of 42% over the period 1990 to 1999, and a further rise in the last decade of 36%.

However, there are still some tissues and disease areas that are very difficult to source and a lack of industry standardization means there are inconsistencies in terms of sample quality and clinical data. For many researchers, this leads to a frustrating inability to obtain high-quality human samples and leaves them with no alternative but to design experiments around whatever tissues they can get, rather than pursuing the most promising research leads.

It is clear that no single biorepository can cover the range of samples needed for research; moreover, as trends change sample demand also changes. Some biobanks operate strategic alliances to overcome this but there is currently no standardization across the industry. These needs are driving a general trend towards harmonization and sharing of best practices across biobanks.

Increasing sample demand, coupled with difficulties in sample sourcing, is driving new ways of working in the biobanking industry, and the availability of ‘on-demand’ samples is emerging.