Maintaining Clinical Tissue Archives and Supporting Human Research: Challenges and Solutions
C Giannini, MM Oelkers, WD Edwards, MC Aubry, MM Muncil, KH Mohamud, SG Sandleback, JM Nowak, AJ Bridgeman, P Heelis, ME Brown, JC Cheville. Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN; Item Tracker, London, United Kingdom
Background: As requests to use clinically archived tissue in translational research continue to increase, it is apparent that research use of tissues originally collected for diagnosis and therapeutic purposes poses unique challenges. Conflicts may arise between pathologists who are responsible for overseeing and preserving these tissues and investigators who depend upon this material in their research endeavors.
Design: We evaluated the status of the institutional Mayo Clinic Tissue Registry Archive and found the existing process for managing tissue loans, including slides and paraffin blocks, insufficient for the complexity and volume of this task, resulting in a number of significant deficiencies. We therefore developed updated written policies and procedures in order to support a new modern and robust tracking system with some features of a library loan system. The new database tracking system, Item Tracker, required extensive work and customization and was ready for implementation in January 2008. We present the data from our first year of implementation (2008) compared to an index year with the old system (2005).
Results: While in 2005, return rates for glass slides and paraffin blocks were respectively 46% and 60%, in 2008, with a total number of 206,330 slides and 51,416 blocks on loan, return rates for glass slides and paraffin blocks were highly improved, reaching 97% by the final due date. 71% of blocks and 68% of slides were requested in support of IRB-approved research protocols, while 25% and 22% respectively for clinical purposes. The smaller remaining numbers for education and quality activities. Slides and blocks yet to be returned are tracked and followed. Material which was found to be permanently “lost” represented respectively 0.021% of slides and 0.04% of blocks, none fortunately representing the only diagnostic material for the case.
Conclusions: We were able to develop and implement policies, processes, and procedures which allowed enhanced oversight of diagnostic pathologic tissue, slides, and blocks. With expanding needs for tissue slides and blocks for clinical care and growing demands for translational research, it is essential that all departments of pathology especially at institutions with large tissue-based research endeavors have a pathology tracking and management system in place to meet all clinical, education and research needs as well as legal requirements.
Category: Quality Assurance
Monday, March 22, 2010 1:00 PM
Poster Session II # 215, Monday Afternoon