What is biobanking?
What is biobanking exactly?
The short answer is "Yes." The biobank is a repository for biological samples that have been properly preserved and can be used to support future scientific research.
However, biobanking has a far more complex explanation in the scientific research arena.
Time magazine named Biobanking one of the "10 Most Innovative Ideas" in 2009.
"Changing the World Right Now". They emphasized the importance of biobanks in elevating the quality of life
Potential of the information scientists could get from biological samples, and what this might mean
This is what it means for future research.
Biobanks are now an integral part of scientific advancement in the era when science is moving at a rapid pace.
There are many scientific breakthroughs and emerging methods. We now know that
Biobanking isn't just a way to keep biological samples safe, it's also a key tool in the development of biobanking.
Preservation of biological information through the use of appropriate legislation and logistical management
Biobanks serve as long-term, large-scale storage libraries of biological information that can be
accessed in order to answer scientific questions on command.
What are the requirements for biobanking success?
The Mayo Clinic is located in Minnesota and was an early adopter for the biobank concept.
He currently manages one among the largest biobanks of patient samples in the United States.
Their researchers recently published an informative review which defined the requirements.
the successful operations involved in biobanking. We will discuss these issues in detail here.
Eleanor Roosevelt wisely observed: "Those failing to plan, plan not to fail."
biobank collection, there must be a plan!
This plan will require a clearly defined set of goals and objectives that the researchers aim to
achieve with the samples in storage. It will also require stipulated protocols regarding sample
Collect and process. Storage requirements pertaining to storage size and conditions will
Identified and monitored for the specific biobank.
2. Standard Operating Procedures created
Standard Operating Procedures (SOP) are fundamental components of high-quality scientific outputs.
Procedures (SOPs) to ensure the consistent, repeatable, reliable, and accurate results scientific
The biobank should have a limit on sample variability.
The sample collection and processing is performed by researchers. Once the samples are received at the
biobank - A variety of different procedures are in place to manage environmental conditions
During the preservation phase, to limit variability.
These procedures include but are not limited to the handling of the specimens and include
processing and receiving methods. Furthermore, the implementation of an appropriate
All records management systems, equipment monitoring, facility security and monitoring will be provided by rest
These procedures will be set up by the biobank.
3. Biobank staff training
In order to maximise the integrity of samples earmarked for biobanking, staff need to have a
A thorough understanding of internal procedures is essential. This training should be
Competent to perform their duties.
Biobank staff training and competency are particularly important in biobanks where specimens
all samples were taken from different locations. The Mayo Clinic review also includes further information.
It is a good idea to identify a super-trainer - someone who works as part of your permanent staff.
Responsible for the training of new employees. to ensure uniform training methods for delivery
Because staff turnover is almost inevitable, it is important to maintain consistency for a long time.
4. Laboratory Information Management Systems
Once samples have been stored, maintaining integrity in the biobank cannot be completed.
Further, sample integrity is dependent on the day-today activities of the biobank. These activities are strongly dependent on a reliable Laboratory Information Management System (LIMS) for sample tracking, traceability and accountability
A suitable LIMS software suite allows for the management and tracking laboratory samples and associated data. Any details pertaining to the type, source, collection, collection methods, transportation, processing, preservation (if applicable), and storage of each sample should be documented.
Based on the requirements of each biobank, LIMS may be integrated with specialised instrumentation or workflows to reduce the risk of human error that could compromise integrity of samples.
5. After-collection processing
In order to ensure long-term storage, depending on the nature of biological samples, processing after collection may be required.
Pre-collection processing should always be clearly documented in pre-established SOPs. It should also be included in the LIMS to maintain the integrity of each sample.
6. Disaster preparedness
Biobank samples are often irreplaceable and scientifically valuable.
Biobanks should be prepared for possible disasters that may threaten the integrity or preservation of samples. The biobank's location and the environment could pose potential dangers such as fires, flooding, and security breaches.
A biobank should not only have an early detection system in place but it is also recommended that a designated crisis management team be assigned to prepare risk assessments and a tailor-made contingency plan, should disaster strike.
South Africa's biobanking industry: challenges and prospects
South Africa is home to approximately 60 million people and has one the highest rates of communicable illnesses, including HIV, Tuberculosis and a growing number metabolic disease syndromes.
This high incidence of diseases requires specialized research and development in order for developing countries with logistical and resource limitations to be able to benefit from it.
One of South Africa's greatest threats to productivity is the limitations of its energy resources. The combination of aging infrastructure and a rapid increase in demand for coal, has caused rolling, scheduled power shortages in South Africa. While capacity-building plans are important for the future of SA's power, as well as renewable energy, it is still possible to experience unavoidable power shortages.
Since effectively maintaining specified temperatures in sample storage is crucial, special considerations must be given to biorepositories in SA regarding their energy supply. A reputable SA-based biorepository will require backup generators and stable energy storage devices to ensure sustained operations.
Why not consider biobanking your samples?
With all the potential benefits of biobanking, it may seem like a service exclusively reserved for large research and academic institutions.