A new paradigm for biospecimen banking in the personalized medicine era

Am J Clin Pathol. 2011 Nov;136(5):679-84. doi: 10.1309/AJCP7DWCQ1SWJTWU.


Banking of high-quality, appropriately consented human tissue is crucial for the understanding of disease pathogenesis and translation of such knowledge into improvements in patient care. Traditionally, tissue banking has been thought of as primarily an academic research activity, but tissue and biospecimen banking is increasingly assuming clinical importance, especially with the advent of genetic and proteomic testing approaches that rely on fresh or fresh frozen tissue. These approaches are part of the revolution in personalized medicine. This revolution's impact on biorepositories-their mission and day-to-day function-will be profound. Direct patient care will require structuring tissue procurement to become a routine part of patient care. Accordingly tissue banking will expand from its traditional research role in large academic medical centers into the everyday practice of surgical pathology. Successful implementation of this model will require consideration of several financial, medicolegal, and administrative issues.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Biological Specimen Banks / organization & administration*
  • Humans
  • Informed Consent
  • Physician's Role
  • Precision Medicine*