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Tissue Bank


The King’s College London Haemato-Oncology Tissue Bank was established in 2005 with the help of a grant from Leukaemia & Lymphoma Research. The bank is based at the King’s College London Denmark Hill campus alongside King’s College Hospital, our main hospital partner.

Our Tissue Bank has received funding from the NHS National Institute for Health Research via the Experimental Cancer Medicine Centre Network initiative and is a member of the National Cancer Research Institute’s Confederation of Cancer Biobanks.

Key Individuals

Professor Stephen Devereux

Ms Rajani Chelliah

Designated Individual

and Director

Tissue Bank Manager

Our Aim

The objective of our Tissue Bank is to serve as an international bioresource to facilitate basic and translational research into the aetiology, diagnosis and prognosis of blood cancers and to pursue this aim in a manner that complies with all laws, regulations and industry standards that apply to research tissue banking.

Licensing and Ethics

We are licensed by the Human Tissue Authority (licence 12223, awarded 1st September 2006, unconditional status) and have generic ethics approval via the National Research Ethics Service (reference NE/18/0141). Our ethics approval allows us to collect tissue of any type from adult patients with any disorder within the spectrum of haemato-oncology, attending any centre in the UK, to retain that material in perpetuity for future unspecified uses on the basis of enduring consent and to release the material to researchers without further referral to an ethics committee. Any research using our material conducted in the UK is covered by our ethics approval.

Our Resource

We receive approximately 2,000 samples per year and our conserved collection reflects the specialism of our main tissue provider, namely the Department of Haematological Medicine, King’s College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust. Thus, our bank is rich in material from adult patients with pre-leukaemic and bone marrow failure disorders, including myelodysplastic syndromes, aplastic anaemias and paroxysmal nocturnal haemoglobinurea. The bank is also populated with material from patients with chronic and acute myeloid leukaemia, myeloma and chronic lymphocytic leukaemia. Lymphoma is not well represented in the bank at present, but there are plans to develop into this area. Tissue is stored in a variety of ways in order to exploit the resource as fully as possible and tumour-bearing material (for example bone marrow and/or blood) is complemented, whenever possible, by paired samples of skin and/or buccal mucosa as references to the constitutional genome of the donor.

Applications for Sample Access

Researchers seeking access to our samples must first refer to our sample access policy (see below) to ensure that they are eligible to apply. Our bank’s inventory is not presently available for external scrutiny: researchers must contact the Tissue Bank Manager who will conduct searches as required. Applications to receive material must be made on a pro forma supplied by the Tissue Bank Manager. All applications are assessed by our Tissue Bank Management Committee, comprising an independent academic reviewer, senior departmental clinical and non-clinical academics, a lay representative / donor advocate and the Designated Individual and Tissue Bank Manager.

Our Sample Access Policy

The Tissue Bank will make samples available to bona fide researchers, wherever their research is conducted. We consider bona fide researchers to be those directed or supervised by a recognised public, charitable or industrial body. Where we are unsure of a researcher’s bona fides (for example, where requests are from smaller industrial or private bodies) we will look for a track record in the field or other unambiguous means of validating their credentials in making our decision.

Any use of samples must be fully consistent with the consent given by our donors.

Any use of samples must be fully consistent with the generic ethics approval described under NE/18/0141. Where a project falls outside of our generic ethics approval we will require applicant to secure project-specific approval from an appropriate Research Ethics Committee before releasing material to them.

Applicants must satisfy us that the stated research presents no undue risks to the donors of the samples.

We will only supply samples for research that has been appropriately reviewed and validated. We expect that most applications will be supported by funders who carry out peer review of scientific merit or that applicants will be able to provide evidence of other review. Where we are not satisfied that a study has been adequately reviewed, we reserve the right to commission a review on our behalf.

Patient Information Sheet and Consent Form

The current versions of our Patient Invitation Letter, Patient Information Sheet, and Consent Form are available for printing using the links above. These are version-controlled documents which are updated from time to time, so please do not store local copies of the electronic file or print large stocks of paper copies.

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