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Assessing Researcher Needs for a Virtual Biobank.

  • Author(s): van Draanen, Jenna;
  • Davidson, Pamela;
  • Bour-Jordan, Helene;
  • Bowman-Carpio, LeeAnna;
  • Boyle, David;
  • Dubinett, Steve;
  • Gardner, Brian;
  • Gardner, Jachael;
  • McFall, Courtney;
  • Mercola, Dan;
  • Nakazono, Terry;
  • Soares, Stephanie;
  • Stoppler, Hubert;
  • Tempero, Margaret;
  • Vandenberg, Scott;
  • Wan, Yu Jui;
  • Dry, Sarah
  • et al.

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Biosamples and associated clinical data accelerate translational and clinical research discoveries. A lack of high quality biosamples both stalls projects and limits research advances. In this study, we targeted a wide audience of University of California (UC) biobanking stakeholders who were either involved with the collection or the utilization of biosamples to assess the scope of their biobanking activities and their interest in virtual biobanking or cooperating in the formation of the UC-wide biorepository.

Materials and methods

Each institutional review board from the five UC medical campuses' provided a dataset of potential researchers involved with biobanking. Once identified, a brief six item web-based questionnaire was administered electronically to these researchers.


Most survey participants (80%) responded "yes" (n = 348) that they were actively collecting biosamples for research, and 68% of participants indicated they would either definitely (30%, n = 131) or maybe (38%, n = 166) request biosample materials now or within the next year. An equal proportion of participants responded yes (42% or n = 184) and maybe (42% or n = 182) when asked if they would voluntarily contribute specimens to a UC-wide virtual biobank.


The results presented above show high levels of support among UC biobanking stakeholders for both requesting material from and contributing material to a UC-wide virtual biobank. In addition, a considerable number of individual researchers on our five UC medical campuses are conducting biospecimen research (i.e., well over n = 435 respondents).

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