Improving the quality of biospecimens in cancer biobanks in NSW is the focus of a 2014/15 project funded by Cancer Institute NSW, under the auspices of the Biobanking Stakeholder Network. The project aims to:
a) develop this website for use by all BSN members and researchers searching for cancer biobanks and biospecimens;
b) organise a one-day conference on statewide biobanking initiatives and biospecimen quality;
c) collate and analyse survey data that ascertains NSW cancer biobank activities surrounding Quality Control and SOPs.
In particular, this website was produced in response to an emerging body of evidence that inadequate biospecimen quality (the beginning of the translational research supply chain) is one cause of irreproducibility of medical research results. Also, under-reporting of biospecimen meta-data can contribute to readers being unable to replicate experiments. Papers on these topics, and the ensuing low rates of clinical trial success can be found here, here, here and here.
These studies highlight the importance of both standardisation of biobanking operations, and reporting requirements with respect to experiments that have utilised biospecimens. Information on a proposed biospecimen pre-analytical code, and biospecimen reporting requirements can be found on our Publications page.