Our theme of this year’s ISBER 2016 Annual Meeting & Exhibits is Breaking Down Walls: Unifying Biobanking Communities to Secure our Sustainability. The conference will focus on different fields of biobanking and how biobanking communities can act in concert to increase sustainability and to secure the future of biobanking. The key note lecture will highlight the role in which biobanking is already playing as a tool to tackle current and future medical and environmental challenges and how important it is for research, development, education, and policy making. The Annual Meeting & Exhibits will offer you multiple plenary sessions dealing with quality management (accreditation, certification), biospecimen research and quality (creating a ‘gold standard’), strategies for collaborative data management, and ethical, legal, and social implications in biobanking and precision medicine, and educational and corporate workshops. Contributed paper presentations, poster sessions, and working group discussions will allow you to discuss and network with your international colleagues. Companies from around the world will demonstrate the latest products, services and technology in the field of repository and specimen collection and testing.
7:00 am – 8:50 am Repository Technician – A Summary: TBA
9:10 am – 11:00 am Repository Technician – B Summary: TBA
7:00 am – 8:50 am Access to Pathology Archives for Research Purposes Chantal Steegers, Lucy Overbeek Summary: Pathology departments store millions of FFPE samples after diagnosis in their archives. These ‘residual diagnostic secondary use biobanks’ can be of great benefit for research purposes.
9:10 am – 11:00 am Limitations in the Use of Human and Animal Tissues in Research: What Biorepositories and Investigators Need to Know William E. Grizzle Summary: Many investigators request human tissues from biorepositories to support their research. Although a biorepository may supply these tissues, the specimens provided may not actually meet all the needs of the investigators. This mini-workshop will discuss typical specimens requested by and provided to investigators and how and why these may or may not meet investigator experimental needs. Issues to be discussed are the following: • Effects of tissue heterogeneity and the use of macrodissection in studies using sequencing, real-time PCR, and Western blotting. • Storage of specimens in freezers and as paraffin blocks – stability of molecules in solid tissues during storage. • What is known about warm and cold ischemia? • What limitations as to the use of animal and human tissues in research do investigators fail to recognize? • What is bias and how does it affect studies? • What are the effects of fixation and tissue processing on studies using paraffin embedded tissues? • The need for a Quality Management System and quality control? • What should pathologists contribute to a biorepository? • How can biorepositories optimally meet investigator needs, not just their requests? • What are the challenges in meeting investigators needs over the next decade? • What are the approaches to aid in meeting some of current and future challenges?
7:00 am – 8:50 am Uniting Siloed Biobanks in your organization: Practical guidance from the Duke University experience Helena Ellis, Mary-Beth Joshi, Jennifer Cheeseman, Shannon McCall, Dawn Bowles Summary: Disparate, independent biobanks exist at most US academic medical centers, having developed over time, for specific research needs and with little communication and coordination between biobanking entities. The uniting of these biobanks into a single biobanking entity brings efficiency and cost savings, and increased protections for the participants. However, merging involve practical challenges, including regulatory issues, informatics and semantics, financial concerns, and even emotional issues regarding independence, ownership, and loss of control. This session will discuss Duke’s real life experiences in uniting independent academic biobank entities. Topics include physical infrastructure, informatics, data, personnel and governance.
9:10 am – 11:00 am Transforming the Connectivity of Global Biospecimen Data: Collaborative Industry, Academic and Research Foundation Approaches Lori Ball Summary: For most research enterprises, data related to biological specimens is collected and archived in disparate databases, in non-standard formats and across many different locations around the world. New collaborative research models which encourage sample asset sharing within and across biopharmaceutical enterprises, academic medical research institutions as well as government and non-profit research foundations are challenging this historical data management approach. These new models are encouraging biobanks and research organizations to think differently about how they store and share both physical biospecimens and the resulting data connected with these sample assets. The rapid growth occurring in translational research, genomics and biomarker development is a key driver of biospecimen and data sharing collaborations. Biobanks can no longer exist just to store sample inventories. They must provide valuable information connected to these samples to empower researchers to find the right samples at the right time. A bioscience organization‘s ability to connect stored biospecimens with related scientific and medical data is essential to support research collaborations. The integration of biospecimen data improves retrospective data analysis which supports the development of novel research hypotheses and enables the advancement of medical discoveries to the market faster.
5:00 pm – 6:30 pm Education Supporting Biobank Quality Programs Peter Watson Summary: This workshop will discuss biobank quality programs and the education that is available to support these programs.
5:00 pm – 6:30 pm The keys to success for new biobanks Karine Sargsyan, Berthold Huppertz, Tanja Macheiner Summary: This workshop is designed for all those a) who are involved in build-up of a new biobank, b) who intend to collaborate with a biobank or research institute on biobanking topics, c) who face the challenges of a growing biobank or d) who try to overcome the challenges of maintaining a large biobank. The format of this workshop is a mixture of presentations and discussion sessions allowing participants to learn by experience exchange. This knowledge-transfer contains questions and challenges about infrastructure, regulatory guidelines as well as practical aspects of sample processing for standardized biobanking with a wide range of sample types. Under this scope there are specific success-criteria to discuss in case to case. This course is set up to: • Deliver the theoretical and operating comprehensive knowledge, which is essential to enable the activities of current and emerging biobanks • Transfer best practice principles for biobank personnel, investigators, clinicians and interested individuals • Encourage principle-based exchange of knowledge and skills crosswise between different biobanking activities involved in biospecimen preservation, storage, science and research Topics: • Design and services of a biobank • Quality management and process Improvement • Sample collection and processing (Fluid and Tissue) • Sample storage and retrieval Aims: – Exchange and discussion of user-experiences in biobanking – Impart knowledge about state-of-the-art in biospecimens processing and storage – Enhancement of harmonization in biobanking networks – Encourage greater membership and harmonisation in development of SOPs in biobanks – Determination of shared future aims and challenges in the field of biobanking – Joint efforts for harmonization, including definition of new data criteria for identification of samples and their processing (e.g. SPREC), quality criteria
Blair Hedges is Carnell Professor of Science and Director of the Center for Biodiversity at Temple University in Philadelphia, USA. He is an evolutionary biologist and conservationist who studies the tree-of-life with molecular clocks and explores Caribbean islands where he has discovered and described 112 species of animals. He also studies and lectures on the science of art. The New York Times has published 11 news articles about his research, and his work has been supported continuously by the U.S. National Science Foundation. He is an elected fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.