Research Cell Bank Services

Biorepository Services and Biospecimen Processing

The Research Cell Bank at Fred Hutch houses three biorepositories — the Brain Tumor Resource Laboratory, the International Histocompatibility Work Group Biorepository, and the Hematopoietic Cell Therapy Research Cell and DNA Bank. We maintain two of these biorepositories ourselves, and every year, we process hundreds of orders. We also offer customizable large-volume biospecimen processing services and services in cell immortalization, mycoplasma testing and DNA fingerprinting.


Biorepositories  |  Services

Schedule With Us

To schedule services with the Research Cell Bank, or to get more information about how we can work with you, view our rates and scheduling page.

To order materials from a biorepository, review the information provided on this page.

Please note that all orders must be accompanied by a purchase order number or notification of the intent to pay via credit card (contact Shared Resources Billing for credit card payment set up).  If you have not provided such information by the date of shipment, your order may be delayed.


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International Histocompatibility Work Group (IHWG) Biorepository

This repository of HLA reference standards comprises more than 1,000 B-lymphoblastoid cell lines derived from past IHWG workshops. Find more information about the IHWG collection, including ordering instructions, on the Fred Hutch IHWG website.

Hematopoietic Cell Therapy Research Cell and DNA Bank (HCT-RCB)

The HCT-RCB is a centralized repository of biospecimens established and maintained to support research projects within the Fred Hutch Hematopoietic Cell Transplantation Program. Specimens include peripheral blood and bone marrow mononuclear cells, B-lymphoblastoid cell lines immortalized in-house, and DNA. Samples are only available for distribution internally to Fred Hutch investigators and members of the Fred Hutch/University of Washington Cancer Consortium. To place an order or request more information about the HCT-RCB, contact the Research Cell Bank

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Processing Large-Volume Biospecimens

We work with investigators to perform Ficoll separation to isolate mononuclear cells in peripheral blood and bone marrow, typically in volumes of 40 mL or greater. We cryopreserve the resulting cells for short- or long-term storage. We can also isolate plasma and serum from these samples at additional cost.

Transformation of B-Cell Lines

Using Epstein-Barr virus, we can attempt immortalization of B-lymphoblastoid cells from mononuclear cells isolated from peripheral blood or bone marrow. We use cyclosporine A in this process to inhibit T-cell populations, and we proliferate lines in culture without the use of antibiotics. We generally cryopreserve the cells in short- or long-term storage in concentrations of 5 to 7 million in a 10% DMSO freezing solution.

Mycoplasma Testing

We perform rapid mycoplasma testing using the MycoProbe kit from R&D Systems to test for the most common strains of mycoplasma. We require sample submission by end of day Monday for our tests every Tuesday. If there is a holiday, an inclement weather closure, or another service interruption on Monday and/or Tuesday, we will postpone the testing or post rescheduling information. Learn more about this service in our mycoplasma testing FAQ.

Our mycoplasma assay uses a colorimetric signal amplification system. This plate shows positive and negative results. Photo by Angela Bryce
DNA Fingerprinting

We provide DNA fingerprinting using short tandem repeat, or STR, typing. This system employs the identification polymorphisms at nine or more loci, which are used for comparison on ExPASy’s Cellosaurus STR Similarity Search Tool. You can also provide your own typing for comparison. For more information on this service, review these documents:

Questions about our Research Cell Bank services or how to schedule with us?