CryoXtract Blog

Dr. Peng Wang of the Beijing Biobank of Clinical Resources Emphasizes China’s Critical Role in the Future of the Industry

Posted by Andy Zaayenga on Dec 18, 2014 11:37:03 AM

In a recent interview with Dr. Peng Wang, Chief Executive Officer of the Beijing Biobank of Clinical Resources at Capital Medical University (CMU), ISBER President Andy Zaayenga discussed the history and key facets of the Chinese biobanking industry. With 15 clinical-based biobanks, the CMU network is now in phase two of  its development and houses approximately 100,000 cases for major disease research.

The Chinese biobank system is a large network consisting of biobanks from several major Chinese hospitals. Through strict maintenance of its central database and bioinformatics network, CMU promotes unified standards across sites and emphasizes the critical importance of maintaining sample integrity and output.

The rapidly growing CMU biobank network is financially supported by the Beijing Municipal Science and Technology Committee, and its samples target research in major diseases including cardiovascular and cerebrovascular diseases, metabolic diseases such as diabetes, and cancer. Information on collection sizes and scope is available to researchers and the public on the biobank’s website, which promotes sharing and utilization of these valuable specimens throughout China.

Dr. Wang, who led the establishment of the clinical biobank for PUMC hospital in 2009, says each biobank in the system reports collecting 150-1500 samples each week. “With the rapid increase in prevalence of major diseases within the Chinese population, the financial burden of patient treatment is growing,” said Dr. Wang. “Finding a way to improve diagnosis and treatment options for these patients is a critical task for the medical society.”

Furthermore, the biobanking movement in China is responding to the increasing global emphasis on translational medical research. The population’s relatively large sample pool offers a tremendous resource for medical researchers across the globe, potentially reducing sample collection timelines. The industry's promising developmental trajectory does face hurdles, however. Implementing unified quality control and evaluation programs and harmonizing a collaborative sample sharing system are key elements of success.

To read the interview transcript, click here.

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Topics: Andy Zaayenga, biobanking, Chinese biobanks

Beijing Biobanking Meeting Promotes Adoption of Standardization & Best Practices in China

Posted by Graham Long on Jul 3, 2014 10:12:13 AM


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Topics: Andy Zaayenga, biobanking, Conferences

ISBER 2014: Engaging the Biobanking Community in Focused Discussion on Evidence-Based Practices

Posted by Andy Zaayenga on Jun 6, 2014 7:28:32 AM

By Andy Zaayenga, International Society for Biological and Environmental Repositories (ISBER) President, 2014-2015

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Topics: ISBER, Andy Zaayenga, biobanking

Listen to the Audio: Interview with Andy Zaayenga, Managing Director of SmarterLab and President-Elect of ISBER, 2014-2015

Posted by Larry Chin on May 2, 2014 8:14:05 AM

The following are audio files of the full interview conducted by Larry Chin, Vice President of Business Development at CryoXtract, with Andy Zaayenga, Managing Director of SmarterLab and President-Elect of ISBER, 2014-2015. You can also read the full transcript below.

Challenges Facing the Biobanking Industry:

In a recent interview with CryoXtract’s Larry Chin, Andy Zaayenga, Managing Director of SmarterLab and incoming President of ISBER, discusses the top three challenges facing the biobanking industry today. He cites problems with sample utilization and acceptance of biobanks by the general population as key concerns. Both of these relate to the third problem of biobanks operating alone in silos. Without solid systems of communication and standardization of infrastructure and procedures, improving sample utilization and the public perception of the industry is difficult. ISBER is one organization working towards addressing these issues through initiatives such as its upcoming biorepository locator.

Needs of the Biobanking Industry:

Andy Zaayenga continues his discussion of the top three gaps and unmet needs of biobanks by arguing for improved quality assurance and control in order to preserve sample suitability for research. He again calls for standardization and harmonization of quality assurance procedures, data structures, and annotation of samples to increase accessibility and cross-utilization of samples.  Finally, he highlights ISBER's published best practices and self-assessment tools as key answers to another major gap in the industry. 

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Topics: ISBER, Andy Zaayenga, biospecimens, legacysamples, biobanks, biorepository, biobanking