Specimen Processing Services

Processing Biospecimens in Research

Our specimen processing team offers a range of services for processing and storing small-volume biospecimens. We offer dedicated laboratory support for large, population-based studies, with a strong emphasis on quality control. Our services include the development and validation of processes for specimen analysis; processing blood, urine, buccal and peripheral blood mononuclear cell samples; and data entry and quality assurance. We have a standard operating procedure for most of the sample types we process, and we can adapt our SOPs to suit your needs or use your SOP. 

Schedule With Us

To schedule specimen processing services, or to get more information about how we can work with you, view our rates and scheduling 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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DNA Extraction

We extract DNA using various salting out techniques. We can extract from whole blood, peripheral mononuclear cells, B-lymphoblastoid cells, bone marrow, tissues (frozen and formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded), buccal brushes, swabs and Oragene. The extraction procedure varies by sample type, allowing us to obtain the highest quality and the largest yield possible. We then use Picogreen or Qubit to measure the DNA quantity, and we assess the optical density A260/A280 via Nanodrop to measure the quantity and quality. Agarose gel can offer an additional measure of quality. DNA remains as stock, or we can prepare a specific concentration you require.

RNA Extraction

We provide RNA extraction from a wide variety of starting materials, including Paxgene, tissues, cells, blood (buffy coats), serum/plasma, FFPE, globin mRNA depletion and bone marrow. We provide the A260/A280 ratio and concentration for RNA isolation and determine quality using Agilent’s TapeStations. We also offer macrodissections using FFPE samples.


Our team can perform ELISA and other plate-based immunoassays to detect and quantify analytes such as proteins, antibodies, hormones, etc., including direct and indirect ELISA variations.


We provide -80°C and liquid nitrogen storage for both small- and large-scale storage needs. The state-of-the-art repository is located within controlled space within Fred Hutch's Fairview Freezer Facility. The repository was designed to promote the safe handling, receipt, processing and storage of biological specimens. We have controlled access to the freezer facility and freezers. 

Samples are stored within a vapor-phase liquid nitrogen freezer system with annual validation of all components, bulk supply of liquid nitrogen, 72-hour backup and emergency electrical power backup circuitry.

Our -80°C specimens are housed within Stirling ultra-low freezers with 24/7 monitoring, emergency electrical power backup circuitry, Seattle City Light-supplied power sources for backup power, a backup generator if both power sources from Seattle City Light fail and annual freezer calibration performed by Precision Mechanical.

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Questions about our specimen processing and storage services or how to schedule with us?