The Princess Margaret Cancer Biobank is a comprehensive academic biorepository led by Dr. Neil Fleshner (Medical Director), Heidi Wagner (Head of Operations), and Dr. Hal Berman (Scientific Advisor).
Princess Margaret Cancer Biobank (PCMB) (formerly known as UHN Biobank) is a multi-site, large-scale biorepository for human biospecimens and associated clinical data. It was funded with the goal of supporting researchers in the execution of translational research to understand, detect and aid in the discovery of patient specific treatment for oncology diseases.
Affiliated to Canada’s University Health Network (UHN), its four academic hospitals and six research institutes, Princess Margaret Cancer Biobank has provided support for more than 100 clinical trials ranging from single-site investigator-initiated pilot studies to large-scale-sponsored-initiated-trials to support novel product development and biomarkers both locally and internationally, since its inception in 2001.
With over 20 years of experience, PMCB provides a wide variety of services to facilitate research through the ethical collection, processing, annotation, storage, and distribution of high-quality biospecimens. The existing collection of biospecimens ranges from fresh, frozen, formalin fixed, and paraffin embedded (FFPE) tissue, along with compartmentalized blood components such as serum, plasma, and whole blood and various body fluids. Princess Margaret Cancer Biobank also houses snap frozen samples for long term storage.
Protocol Specific Biobanking:
PMCB, offers prospective and retrospective protocol specific banking that includes biospecimen handling, processing, clinical data annotation and long-short term sample storage and shipping.
- Prospective study directed biobanking services
- Biospecimen processing
- Urine, PBMC, Blood
- DNA/RNA extraction
- Biospecimen shipping
Archival Specimen Request:
Archive samples are collected from various tissue sites, pathologies, including: tumors, normal tissue and/or susceptive tissue along with associated pathology annotation data. Biospecimen samples are preserved using best practices and high-quality standards.
Digital Pathology Services:
- Histology services such as: Tissue fixation, paraffin embedding, sectioning, mounting, staining, etc.
- Laser capture microdissection (LCM)
- Tissue microarray (TMA) construction
- Digital slide scanning and quantitative image analysis, including analysis of TMA sections.
- Pathology/clinical annotation, IA pathology annotation
- E-library (Coming Soon)
- Database development
- Consulting services
- QA/QC including molecular QC (Coming Soon)
Access to our services:
- Available to all UHN investigators based on institute/group, PMCB membership arrangement or individual funding.
- UHN Research Ethics Board and site group-specific approval required.
- Biospecimen requisition forms available upon request.
- For access to our services simply submit your request via the CAPCR system at UHN.
- For all other services or inquiries, contact the PMCB's Head of Operations directly.
Note, an executed Materials Transfer Agreement is required for all external collaborations. Please inquire regarding applicable fees for the service of interest.
- Available to all UHN investigators based on institute/group PMCB membership arrangement or individual funding
- UHN Research Ethics Board and site group-specific approval required
- Biospecimen requisition forms available upon request
- Processing of samples is disease specific, following international best practices
- Specific sample handling is available based on research protocols (e.g., fresh frozen tissue for xenografting)
- Collaboration with disease site pathologist recommended
- Design and implementation of individual sample-centered research protocols
(Head of Operations, Princess Margaret Cancer Biobank)