Why You Should Break Up with Your Biobank in 2022

Although biobanks have long been considered an integral part of clinical and translational research, the conventional sample-centric model has many shortcomings. Long-term storage of a vast collection of samples may seem advantageous, but often it is unable to meet the demands of a wide variety of researchers with unique projects, data needs and outcomes.

Biobanks often lack flexibility to accommodate the need for specific sample types or collection methods as well as special patient populations, not easily accessible by generic biobank suppositories. The scientific support and promise that originally surrounded traditional biobanks and their growth is fizzling out, as they fail to overcome these challenges to deliver the research results that have been historically promised.1

In recent years, a new ecosystem in research has been building to create a patient-centric and personalized approach to clinical and translational research that carries the promise of revolutionizing the way we approach scientific discovery. Sanguine is at the forefront of this innovation, empowering patients and researchers alike to drive research through a patient-centric approach with on-demand sample collection that eliminates the need for relying on biobanks. As research questions become more sophisticated and technological advances continue, traditional biobanks are failing to provide ‘fit-for-purpose’ samples and data.

Our patient-centric approach to biospecimen collection and our strong relationships with patient and advocacy groups has grown our patient database to more than 70,000 patients nationwide. Our model and passion for driving research and discovery has allowed us to recruit patients with a wide variety of conditions, including those with rare diseases, a feat that is usually difficult due to geographical limitations. Our proven strategy allows researchers to access what have historically been considered “impossible” samples that will drive their research, while taking a patient-focused approach that focuses on at-home convenience, transparency, engagement and education. With access to patient’s medical records, we can verify eligibility for participation rapidly and can provide a panoramic, long-term view of our study participants following their consent. Our longitudinal sampling capabilities are minimally invasive and can be supplemented with real-time data collection via customized methodologies that capture multidimensional concepts such as quality of life, health history, lifestyle factors, demographics, and socioeconomic measures.

An important limitation of using a biobank, particularly for rare or heterogenous diseases, is that it is difficult to retrospectively verify the quality of the samples from the patient population you have selected. In these unique patient populations, there can be large effects on the results you derive from those samples. This is because variability in disease genotypes and phenotypes or even misdiagnoses are common in rare or heterogeneous diseases, and biobanked samples can be out-of-date or missing key information that would guide whether that subject’s samples should be utilized in your study. Sanguine specializes in engaging with even the hardest to reach populations and can quickly mobilize our nationwide team to collect high-quality samples and data to propel your study towards success.

We can collect a large variety of blood-derived and non-blood-derived subject samples and tissues based on the study needs and we can customize collection of any other parameters such as patient-reported outcomes or data from wearable technologies. These can be collected longitudinally and as event-based samples, with immediate deployment of our mobile team to the patient’s home. Our samples our collected fresh, delivered on the same-day, and processed consistently according to the exact specifications of the researcher’s needs to provide superior quality and trust in the data generated. Quite often, relying on a biobank will fail to be able to provide the ideal study design for answering a unique research question and compromising on such aspects can be the difference between a failed and successful study.

Through our continuous patient engagement and outreach activities, we consistently maintain a greater than 90% study retention rate. Our patient database continues to grow because we empower our patients with knowledge and purpose while also taking innovative approaches to answer important research questions. As the COVID-19 pandemic brought many clinical research studies to a halt and introduced unprecedented challenges to study follow-up visits and sample collection in-clinic, Sanguine Bio was able to meet the challenges head-on and exceed the expectations of our research partners. Our unique at-home approach and independent medical staff means that we are not plagued by the traditional challenges that typical study sites, often affiliated with the healthcare system, have faced through this pandemic. Rest assured that with our approach, COVID-19-related disruptions to your study will be minimal – saving valuable time and money during your study.

We are the biobank of the future – giving you a fully integrated research solution through our living database of engaged patients nationwide, our customizable research design, at-home sample collection approach to collect on-demand samples with ease, and our commitment to work side-by-side with you to drive scientific discovery.