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Research biorepositories

Research biorepositories are collections of biospecimens (samples of human biological material) linked to relevant personal and health information. These biospecimens are stored specifically for use in health and medical research and are utilised with the informed consent of the donor.

Several ethically approved research biorepositories are currently in operation on the Princess Alexandra Hospital campus.

A research biorepository may go under a differing title (eg a tissue bank, a biobank, a tumour bank or a human biological material collection), however their objective is the same.

Their objective is to provide a resource for researchers to use to advance understanding of human health and disease. Research biorepositories are important for:

  • understanding the risk factors that underlie complex diseases
  • translating biomedical research into real improvements in health care, especially through advances in pharmacogenomics and personalised medicine, to minimise adverse drug reactions and ultimately the development of more effective therapies and outcomes for patients with malignant disease.

Metro South Health Research Biorepository Governance Framework

Metro South Health has established a comprehensive Research Biorepository Governance Framework which contains a policy and procedures.

Metro South Health research biorepositories

Collection types currently held within Metro South Health include the following cancer types:

  • haematological malignancies (eg leukaemia, lymphoma and myeloma)
  • head and neck
  • skin cancer and melanoma (phenotypically characterised equivocal melanocytic proliferations)
  • oesophageal, gastric and gastrointestinal stromal tumour (GIST)
  • melanoma and soft tissue
  • brain tumour
  • liver
  • kidney.

Accessing material from a Metro South Health research biorepository

Researchers can contact the Principal Investigator (PI) or Laboratory Manager of the specific research biorepositories directly to discuss processes for accessing samples. For more information please contact the Centres for Health Research or contact the research biorepository directly by utilising the contact details below. The PI and/or Laboratory Manager will in turn describe process to access materials in compliance in compliance with the Metro South Health Research Biorepository Governance Framework. Please note, researchers are required to obtain institutional support and Human Research Ethics Committee (HREC) ethical clearance for the research project prior to accessing samples. If undertaking research in Metro South Health please review information regarding the ethical clearance and research governance authorisation of research.

Research biorepositoryLaboratory managerPrincipal Investigator
Cancer Collaborative Biobank (CCB) - Haematological Malignancies e.g. Leukaemia and LymphomaMegan Ellis
Ph: 3176 5853

Paula Marlton
Ph: 3176 6577

Head and Neck CancersN/A

Ben Panizza
Ph: 3176 5266

Skin Cancer and Melanoma Research (Phenotypically Characterised Equivocal Melanocytic Proliferations)N/A

Peter Soyer
Ph: 3343 8017

Oesophageal, Gastric and Gastrointestinal Stromal Tumour (GIST) Biomarkers Tissue/Blood Banking

Michael Gartside
Ph: 3343 8025

Andrew Barbour
Ph: 3176 5621

Melanoma and Soft Tissue BiobankMichael Gartside
Ph: 3343 8025
Andrew Barbour
Ph: 3176 5621
Queensland Brain Tumour Bank


Sarah Olson
Ph: 3176 6949

Functional Gastrointestinal Disorders BiobankN/A

Gerald Holtmann
Ph: 3176 7792

Kidney Cancer BiobankGlenda Gobe

Simon Wood
Ph: 3176 6946

Lymphoma Biomarkers ResearchN/A

Maher Gandhi
Ph: 3443 8026

Last updated 6 June 2018
Last reviewed 17 May 2018