Establishing a Standardized Method for the Effective Intraoperative Collection and Biological Preservation of Brain Tumor Tissue Samples Using a Novel Tissue Preservation System: A Pilot Study

World Neurosurg. 2022 May;161:e61-e74. doi: 10.1016/j.wneu.2022.01.030. Epub 2022 Jan 12.


Background: Glioblastoma (GB) is an aggressive tumor showing extensive intertumoral and intratumoral heterogeneity. Several possible reasons contribute to the historical inability to develop effective therapeutic strategies for treatment of GB. One such challenge is the inability to consistently procure high-quality biologically preserved specimens for use in molecular research and patient-derived xenograft model development. No scientifically derived standardized method exists for intraoperative tissue collection specifically designed with the fragility of RNA in mind.

Methods: In this investigation, we set out to characterize matched specimens from 6 GB patients comparing the traditional handling and collection processes of intraoperative tissue used in most neurosurgical operating rooms versus an automated resection, collection, and biological preservation system (APS) which captures, preserves, and biologically maintains tissue in a prescribed and controlled microenvironment. Matched specimens were processed in parallel at various time points and temperatures, evaluating viability, RNA and protein concentrations, and isolation of GB cell lines.

Results: We found that APS-derived GB slices stored in an APS modified medium remained viable and maintained high-quality RNA and protein concentration for up to 24 hours.

Conclusions: Our results showed that primary GB cell cultures derived in this manner had improved growth over widely used collection and preservation methods. By implementing an automated intraoperative system, we also eliminated inconsistencies in methodology of tissue collection, handling and biological preservation, establishing a repeatable and standardized practice that does not require additional staff or a laboratory technician to manage it.

Keywords: Automated preservation system; Biologically preserved; Biospecimen processing; Biospecimens; Glioblastoma; Intraoperative tissue collection; NICO Myriad.

MeSH terms

  • Brain Neoplasms* / pathology
  • Brain Neoplasms* / surgery
  • Glioblastoma* / pathology
  • Glioblastoma* / surgery
  • Humans
  • Pilot Projects
  • Preservation, Biological
  • RNA
  • Tissue Preservation / methods
  • Tumor Microenvironment


  • RNA