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CTSI: Biobanks for Translational Genomics

Large biobanks of DNA samples with extensive genotype and/or sequence data linked to well-phenotyped research subjects assessable through user-friendly electronic queryable interfaces are required to advance discoveries in personalized and genomic medicine and their translation. Furthermore, linking large DNA biobanks to the EHR and/or pharmacy usage databases promises to be a powerful approach to pharmacogenomic discoveries.  At the UM CTSI participating institutions, a number of DNA collections have been initiated around specific populations or disease states. Unfortunately, these collections do not utilize standardized protocols for sample collection, DNA extraction, genotyping, phenotyping or data management, and funding for these projects has been piece-meal and non-sustainable for prospective evaluation of disease progression and/or treatment response. Finally, there is no systematic protocol for investigators to access these samples for their research.

The TGI Service will provide CTSI investigators access to a number of unique biobanks to discover novel genes that influence disease, understand genetic mechanisms of disease and related phenotypes, fast-track genome-informed clinical trials, and study of implementation of personalized and genomic medicine into diverse health care settings. Access to these biobanks will be through the UM CTSI HARBOR. Summary data of the ongoing collections will be provided to all interested investigators.

This powerful resource will enable discovery of new genes and biomarkers relevant to personalized and genomic medicine, facilitate testing of novel personalized medicine therapeutics, and accelerate the translation of ‘omic’ discoveries to patient care.