The goal of the AECC Cancer Biospecimen Acquisition and Biorepository Resource (CBABR) is to provide a centralized unit that meets the best practices of the NCI for high quality biospecimens for cancer research. The CBABR oversees the procurement of malignant, benign, diseased and uninvolved (normal) tissues from both solid and hematological tumors for use by AECC and other investigators. The CBABR has been organized through the consolidation of multiple federated cancer associated Institutional biobanks into a cohesive cancer oriented tissue acquisition and storage biobank that is the nucleus for prospective sample collection. The CBABR is a joint effort of AECC, the Einstein CTSA and other NIH funded centers at Einstein and is supported by several Institutional initiatives including a universal opt-in consent process in use by Einstein's clinical partner, Montefiore Medical Center, dedicated staffing for tissue acquisition in cooperation with Montefiore Surgical Pathology, Clinical Research Informatics support linking samples to medical and research records, and dedicated secure storage space utilizing the most advanced energy efficient freezer technology. A web-based application has been developed that allows investigators to determine if tissue exists in the CBABR with necessary phenotypic characteristics for their studies. The CBABR focus has been on head and neck cancer, breast, colon, lung, cervical and ovarian, neuroendocrine tumors, and hematological tumors. It currently houses 67,704 samples, including 5,704 samples collected since the institution of the new CBABR in late 2011, all of which are available for use by investigators. The CBABR process encompasses patient informed consent at initial cancer evaluation, planned universal opt-in consent procedures, patient medical and health information that is annotated to the biospecimens, centralized management of specimen collection, processing and storage, and multiple levels of security and protection of the resource through the parent CTSA biorepository including 24/7 monitoring and alarmed redundant backups. A CBABR Scientific Review Board (SRB) has been constituted to evaluate scientific and technical merit of applications for use of biospecimens that reports to the AECC Protocol Review and Monitoring Committee (PRMC) to approve and, when necessary, prioritize proposed tissue usage. Mechanisms for requested collaborations from outside investigators have been established as well. An institutional initiative will track the informed consent process and perform follow up queries on contributors to the CBSR to assess patient knowledge and satisfaction.
The Cancer Biospecimen Acquisition and Biorepository Shared Resource provides cancer tissue donation, banking and distribution services supporting the translational research mission and goals of the Albert Einstein Cancer Center (AECC). As an NCI-designated Cancer Center, AECC contributes to the national effort to reduce morbidity and mortality from cancer.
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