Biobanking increases the rate at which precision medicine can be used to successfully refine currently existing medical treatment methodologies. The purpose of precision medicine is to increase a patient’s likelihood of defeating a chronic disease, by creating a unique and personal treatment method. However, the research necessary to develop precision medicine requires thousands of biospecimens, which is why biobanking is necessary to move precision medicine forward. Traditional biobanks are a library of preserved biological specimens, such as tissue and whole blood, that can be later accessed for further testing and analysis. Maintaining these types of biobanks is cumbersome and expensive, due to freezer care. Biobank samples are used to support therapeutic drug monitoring in clinical trials, epidemiology, public health screening, and biomarker discovery. Collecting samples for large translational studies requires making regular trips to the phlebotomist or a clinic, which is an inconvenience that is exacerbated when collecting samples in remote and/or resource-limited locations. Inconsistencies in sample collection can affect downstream clinical studies. Remedies for these procedural issues include the development of a medium that effectively preserves the samples at ambient temperature and developing a virtual biobanking system that allows for long-distance access to bioinformatic data of previously analyzed biospecimens.
Part of the book: Biochemical Analysis Tools