The core mission of the Cooperative Human Tissue Network has been the distribution of high quality, well-characterized human biospecimens to researchers who study human disease. Over the past 31 years, the current Eastern Division (ED) has built a dynamic infrastructure and has brought the resource to the research community. The purpose of this proposal is to convey the strengths and innovations of the ED and to describe the plan through which an already successful biospecimen procurement and distribution resource will facilitate and enhance biomedical discovery over the next 5 year cycle. The University of Pennsylvania (UPENN) as the current Eastern Division (ED) of the Cooperative Human Tissue Network (CHTN). submits this application to continue as an adult division of the proposed network. To support this objective, we present the following as specific aims of the ED during this grant cycle. 1) To improve the value of the Network to investigators through innovations in operations, in order to provide a diversified supply of biosamples. To fulfill the specialized requests of the CHTN investigators, by using a targeted sourcing approach to specimen collection. 2) To assure the highest possible quality of tissue, data and services. To use an integrated IT infrastructure to monitor and facilitate biorepository operations and services (collection, processing, quality control, distribution, and storage) guaranteeing a responsive, interactive resource that will adapt to emerging scientific trends. 3) To maximize the impact of the resource by disseminating a proven, successful brand of investigator recruitment and personalized customer service, ensuring researcher satisfaction with the resource. 4) To collaborate with other members of the CHTN to ensure an effective resource by enhancing accessibility to samples, harmonizing interoperability between divisions and by expanding investigations into innovative methodologies and exploring new avenues of biorepository sciences. The ED proposes to bring a innovative approach to improve the strength of the network and to guarantee quality of the distributed biospecimens.
Through its past performance as member of the Network, CHTN-ED has demonstrated that it can provide a wide diversity of high quality biospecimens to the research community.These samples facilitate research in both basic and translational science, thus serving the pubic good in cancer research and other areas of medical science.