Researchers who have easy access to relevant tools, biospecimens, and patient information can focus their work on finding cures for cancer and other diseases instead of being bogged down by the logistics of finding appropriate numbers and types of research specimens.
Unfortunately, many researchers may be limited by an inadequate availability of biospecimens relevant to their research and the arduous process of collecting enough samples outside of their own lab.
A new caBIG™ software tool called caTissue (developed by the Biomedical Informatics Facility at Washington University in St. Louis, MO) promises to greatly improve the way that biospecimens are catalogued, managed, and accessed—making it easier for researchers across the country to obtain a statistically significant number of specimens for use in experiments.
Traditionally, a researcher, or group of researchers at a specific institution, maintains their own dedicated biospecimen banks, using them for their projects as needed. But the challenge for researchers is that biospecimen repositories maintained by their institutions or partners may not encompass sufficient numbers of the appropriate high quality, clinically annotated biospecimens to achieve the most expeditious and rigorous results.
To facilitate the sharing of specimens among researchers nationwide, the Tissue Banks and Pathology Workspace of caBIG™ has spearheaded an effort to provide the open access caTissue tool to manage a centralized repository describing the location and types of biospecimens across multiple institutions.
The Biomedical Informatics Facility at Washington University in St. Louis led the development of this software and was instrumental in assuring its utility for researchers.
Read more on Why caTissue is important
Category: Tissue banking