What is a Biorepository, what is a Tissue Bank?

A Biorepository or Tissue Bank is a collection of tissue and other samples, such as blood, which have been collected from patients with their permission and stored safely so that they are available for use in medical research by doctors and scientists.

close up of 3 sample tubes

What benefit does it provide?

The Tayside Biorepository provides investigators with a large and wide collection of material that can help determine, for example, what factors different samples of diseased tissue might have in common. This in turn allows researchers to devise better ways of diagnosing and treating diseases such as cancer, and improves our understanding of what triggers such disease. Before obtaining any donated samples researchers must provide a written explanation of exactly what they intend to do with the tissue. A committee of doctors and scientists based in Dundee then assesses the merit of each request on scientific, technical and ethical grounds. Only if they are satisfied that the research is well planned and of medical value is permission given for tissue to be provided. A list of research projects. that investigators are currently undertaking are is available. Many projects have been completed and, following external review, have been published in leading scientific journals so that researchers worldwide are aware of the findings and as many people as possible can benefit. A list of publications is also available.