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European Biopharmaceutical Review

Data Swap

Biobanks play a significant role in the drug discovery process by providing researchers access to unique sample sets that can be linked to identifying characteristics, which, in turn, can accurately diagnose disease and predict drug response.

Today’s research biobank typically provides physical sample storage and maintains associated data within their databases. Information about acquisition, quality, state, location, processing outcomes, quantity, and usage are all generally available at a minimum, but are primarily focused on the sample characteristics. However, researchers want to link individualities to attributes of the donor, including phenotypical, demographical, genetic, or lifestyle attributes.

A challenge can present itself between the biobank resources and requirements of the research community. The types and amount of data linked to the physical sample that is needed to identify pertinent information can grow more important and complex. Therefore, meeting the expanding specificity of research programmes requires each sample within a biorepository to be connected to as comprehensive a data array as possible to deliver maximum value.

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Colin Thurston is Director of Informatics at Brooks Life Sciences, having joined the company in 2015. He has worked in the field of laboratory informatics for over 20 years and has experience in the development, sales, support and marketing of a variety of laboratory software. A graduate of Salford University, UK, with a BSc in chemistry, Colin began his career researching solid-state secondary lithium batteries.
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