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CloudLIMS @Global Biobank Week 2017, Stockholm, Sweden

CloudLIMS at Global Biobank Week

September 18, 2017

The Global Biobank Week 2017, held at The Brewery - Conference Center Stockholm, Stockholm, Sweden saw a huge gathering exceeding 900 delegates from across the globe, comprising biorepository experts, scientists, policy makers, and patient advocacy groups. We presented a poster entitled "Research Collaboration using Cloud: How biobanks can collaborate to accelerate biomedical research" in collaboration with Dr. Jim Vaught, Editor-in-Chief, Biopreservation & Biobanking. Through our poster, we showcased how a cloud-based biorepository LIMS can automate and streamline biorepository operations, manage samples and their complete life cycle, share data in real-time, safeguard Protected Health Information (PHI) of patients, help follow regulatory guidelines, maximize return on investment, thus accelerating biomedical research. There were a number of engrossing poster presentations and talks by eminent speakers from the biobanking industry.

This was the first Global Biobank Week and the theme of the conference was "Towards Harmony in Biobanking". CloudLIMS is proud to be a part of the journey for harmony in biobanking by helping biorepositories in managing their data seamlessly and automating their laboratory workflows.

To download a copy of our poster, please visit our Posters and Presentation section.

We look forward to meeting you at Global Biobank Week 2018!


Meet Us @Global Biobank Week 2017, Stockholm, Sweden

Biobanking LIMS at global biobank week

August 24, 2017

CloudLIMS is excited to present a poster at the 1st Global Biobank Week 2017, Stockholm, Sweden. We are presenting a poster entitled "Research Collaboration using Cloud: How biobanks can collaborate to accelerate biomedical research" in collaboration with Dr. Jim Vaught, Past-President, ISBER1 and Editor-in-Chief, Biopreservation & Biobanking. Visit our poster and receive a complimentary license of our cloud-based product, CloudLIMS. The poster, ID #P-122, will be on display from 8 AM on September 13, to 1 PM on September 14, 2017.

The Global Biobank Week is the outcome of the joint efforts of BBMRI-ERIC2, ESBB3 and ISBER1. The Global Biobank Week provides a global platform for comprehensive discussion and collaboration on activities imperative for biobanking and biopreservation of samples and data for research with the objective of improvising healthcare and preventing diseases. The theme of the congress is harmonization of biobanking activities across the globe. This conference provides an international platform for biobanking experts, scientists, policy makers and patient representatives to discuss the challenges pertaining to biobanking. CloudLIMS is proud to assist biorepositories/laboratories in managing big data seamlessly, automating laboratory workflows, and in following regulatory guidelines such as 21 CFR Part 11, HIPAA, etc.

We look forward to meeting you at Global Biobank Week 2017!

Also read the white paper: Enhancing Laboratory Efficiency Using Cost Effective LIMS for Biobanks and Testing Laboratories

Abbreviations:
1International Society for Biological and Environmental Repositories (ISBER)
2Biobanking and BioMolecular resources Research Infrastructure -European Research Infrastructure Consortium (BBMRI-ERIC)
3European, Middle Eastern and African Society for Biopreservation and Biobanking (ESBB)


Biobanking Software: Cloud Based LIMS System

August 15, 2016

Biobanks are playing a crucial role in biomedical advances globally. They are quickly gaining importance for translational research, new drug discoveries and drug development, which are crucial elements for delivering personalized medicine. It is the new era of medical research that has brought in new discoveries, new knowledge on biological processes, and a wealth of information related to health and diseases. Specifically, treatments for cancer, neurological and metabolic diseases are on the agenda of personalized medicine for which biobanks play a pivotal role in providing and stratifying biospecimen that enable such research.

Carrying research in personalized medicine or developing novel drugs, needs human biological samples. These samples are collected, stored, shared, and provided for research purposes. Until the last decade, there were no predefined set of rules and regulations for collecting samples. Moreover, biobanks did not have to associate each sample painstakingly with patient-related attributes. Today, owing to strict regulatory compliances, the process of associating patient data with samples stored in biobanks includes clinical, demographic, lifestyle, and environmental information. This recording of biological samples generates a lot of data necessitating an informatics system that enables efficient and secure handling of sample and patient-centric information. How do you organize such a large dataset? The solution is offered in the form of a LIMS – Laboratory Information Management System. However, it raises a couple of questions. Can a LIMS software adequately respond to specific biobank features and functionality? What are the differences – if any – between a LIMS for laboratories and IT systems for biobanks?

LIMS manages the tests performed on samples and tracks them throughout the testing process. LIMS designed for biobanks can trace sample origins, their storage location, and the change in custody when accessed by different members of the laboratory. Today, several criteria for sample storage and management are regulated in the form of HIPAA and 21 CFR Part 11 guidelines – which a LIMS needs to follow. Additionally, there are a few requirements that a biobank LIMS software should fulfill to seamlessly handle samples and their associated information efficiently and securely. These are:

  • Manage storage locations throughout the workflow, including volume tracking and the chain of custody, complete with electronic signatures
  • Manage temporary and transit storage locations and report the full account of transfers, custodian and location changes
  • Manage and record complete genealogy by tracking aliquots, derivatives and pooled samples
  • Manage complex biographical information of each sample donor
  • Handle the consent process
  • Maintain a centralized system that controls data extraction from several sources and documents, otherwise available in an unstructured format

Other features, particular to biobank workflows, are sharing of sample information, and test results. This sharing is possible between researchers located at different geographic locations. Advanced software architectures have evolved in the form of web-based platforms/software that enable users to search samples, related attributes applicable to a specific demographic population, thereby enabling longitudinal studies such as disease monitoring, aging studies, and biomarker discovery.

The increasing demand for collecting huge volume of data of sample donors, for personalized diagnostics and therapeutic measures, creates challenges for the storage space. Stand-alone systems don't have the capacity for storing large volumes of data and in some cases, old records must be deleted to generate space for the new incoming data. This results in loss of valuable information (usually historical data) which can be relevant and valuable for future analysis.

Is there a solution to this problem? Cloud is the answer – as the data gets stored in a virtual space instead of institutional hardware. Cloud computing, often referred to as simply, “the cloud,” is the delivery of on-demand computing resources—everything from applications to data centers—over the Internet on a pay-for-use basis. This delivery model ensures no data loss or breach if the hardware is stolen or lost. In addition to solving the storage issue, a cloud-based LIMS offers something more, which can tremendously benefit small to mid-sized laboratories. Cloud is an affordable solution, which eliminates the budgetary concern of every lab. There are no hardware costs, and lab spends on maintenance and recruitment of IT staff. Backups are ensured by the service providers. Cloud services grant flexibility to access data in real time from anywhere, 24x7, 365 days a year. Users can access data using internet enabled devices such as a tablet, mobile phone, laptop, or a personal PC. Data transmission is secure via encryption mechanisms and data storage is secured using access permissions and log-ins. Cloud-based LIMS enables biobanks, clinical and testing labs to focus on research rather than spending time in managing data, IT resources and software purchases.


LIMS for Clinical Research

June 01, 2016

LIMS plays a key role in providing comprehensive laboratory and patient management functionality, essential for researchers and technicians dealing with clinical testing and molecular diagnostics. It assists in streamlining the laboratory operations such as storing the samples, recording patients' data, saving the test results over a period of time, outlining data audits etc, thereby increasing productivity.

Clinical research labs have been using Laboratory Information Management Systems (LIMS). However, the traditional LIMS systems are prohibitively expensive and do not allow sharing of data in real time. Therefore, there is a growing demand for a cost effective LIMS solution for the clinical industry, owing to globalization of R&D operations, lack of budgets, stringency of regulatory bodies towards data integrity, and the need for compatible platforms to share knowledge/data within an organization and with third parties. Cloud technology has emerged as a viable alternative. The SaaS based in-the-cloud LIMS offers commercial and academic institutions, a standardized approach for managing laboratory data globally.

Hosted LIMS has several advantages over the traditional systems:

  • Easy data accessibility for labs located across multiple sites.
  • A substantial decline in the total cost of ownership (TCO) as the IT infrastructure is provided by the LIMS vendor along with the maintenance and data backups.
  • Easy data recovery in the event of natural, mechanical or man-made disasters.
  • Extensive scalability that facilitates accommodation of the infrastructural needs as the operations scale up/down with time.
  • Complimentary software upgrades with maintenance packages.
  • Data encryption that ensures data safety and patient privacy, both of which are important concerns of the compliance requirements in the healthcare sector.
  • Easy integration of patient data with PMRs and EHRs that helps ensuring one record per patient.
  • Enables organizations to be compliant for HIPAA, 21 CFR Part 11, GxP etc.
  • Agility in managing multiple projects simultaneously along with monitoring the CoC and maintaining audit trails.

Unlike a traditional on-site model, cloud based LIMS allows diagnostic labs to be more responsive to their business needs and achieve lower turnaround times in serving pharmaceuticals that rely heavily on the data supplied for drug development.


The Cloud in the Age of Digitization

March 15, 2016

Paradigm Shift Towards Cloud Solution Making Biobank Management Smarter

The speed with which digitization will transform the global economy is likely to surprise many players. So it is critical that several companies begin now to shift their focus beyond simply selling and maintaining their products and services within the current IT system. Instead, they must rethink everything from their operations to their sales and marketing processes to their cultures if they are to stay relevant in the digital age.

Many large technology vendors understand the need for change. For example, IBM-whose advertising slogan, “Smarter Planet,” suggests its commitment to digitization-has been actively buying companies to support a digitized future. In 2010, it bought data warehouse maker Netezza for $1.7 billion, business integration software maker Sterling Commerce for $1.4 billion, and Unica, a maker of marketing technology, for $500 million. The names of other large vendors’ initiatives suggest their similar visions for the future: Smart+Connected Communities (Cisco Systems); Central Nervous System for the Earth (HP Labs); Intelligent Networks (Deutsche Telekom).

Fully 50 percent of all IT spending in 2017 is expected to be devoted to smart computing solutions, platforms, and processes. There is no doubt that the promised value of digitization can only be captured by companies in these fields that understand the fundamental changes ahead. These changes include the following:

  • A shift from moving boxes to software-based, cloud-centric business models supplying services on demand
  • A true multichannel sales approach where the traditional distribution mechanisms of physical products have no meaning anymore, and where the direct online channel becomes primary
  • Significantly more complex ecosystems that will demand much higher-quality products and services that can provide truly value-creating propositions-and rely on a much deeper understanding of industry-specific applications

Cloud computing and security are universally seen as leading industry areas.


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