AMC Biobank


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1 About

As core facility, AMC Biobank provides comprehensive storage services for biological materials and related clinical data. Materials can be tissues, cells, sera, plasma, liquor, urine, feces or molecular fractions, such as DNA and RNA. While most materials are derived from patients and belong to (biobank) studies, also materials for daily research can be stored.

AMC Biobank scheme

The Biobank is part of AMC’s division G (Laboratory Specialisms) and works closely together with the Durrer Center for Cardiovascular Research, hosted by the ICIN–Netherlands Heart Institute. AMC Biobank and Durrer Center share people, rooms, protocols, and quality standards to facilitate high-quality sample/data collection and storage.

AMC Biobank currently houses more than 25 (biobank) studies, including various Parelsnoer collections, shared with other Dutch university medical centers, the HELIUS study on health differences among the residents of Amsterdam with different ethnic origin, and the MARS study on molecular diagnosis and risk stratification of sepsis.

AMC Biobank participates in (inter)national biobank initiatives, including Parelsnoer, CTMM-TraIT, and BBMRI.

2 Guidelines and ethics

The usage of patient material for biomedical research at the AMC is self-regulated by the following guidelines:

    • Code of conduct for responsible use of tissues and cells (FEDERA 2011, pdf)
    • Oprichting en beheer van biobanken binnen het AMC (AMC 2015, pdf)

Collecting clinical data, images, and/or patient material for a biobank requires permission by AMC’s BiobankToetsingsCommissie - for procedures and forms, see the webpage of the BTC - and informed consent by the donor.

3 Services

AMC Biobank provides a number of services for research projects. These services include:


    • Cryo storage at +4°C, -80°C, and -196°C
    • Sample tracking using a Biobank Mangement Information System (BIMS)
    • Virtual registry of existing collections
    • Catalog with overview of collected materials plus basic descriptive information

Logistic support:

    • Infrastructure for collecting and distributing samples
    • Equipment for transporting samples (+4°C, -80°C, and -196°C)

Research support:

    • Molecular biology: access to state-of-the-art lab facilities including most techniques for research focused on molecular biology (e.g. robotized DNA extraction, quality/quantity check on DNA/RNA, Sanger sequencing, next generation sequencing (Roche/Solexa), gene expression analyses (quantitative PCR), genotyping (e.g. Taqman), copy number variation analyses (MLPA, qPCR), whole genome DNA amplification)
    • Bio-informatics: expertise and hardware for doing elaborate statistical analysis on several different output formats or complex genetics analysis (e.g. GWAS)

Legal-ethical support:

    • Advice about questions pertaining to legal or ethical issues
    • Assistance in arranging documents on material transfer and contracts

Data management:

    • Development of formats for registries and standard electronic case record forms (eCRFs in OpenClinica/RedCap) for clinical data collection

Facility management:

    • Access to central rooms at AMC in Z01, G01, and the IWO building for freezers (-80°C and -196°C) owned by AMC researchers/departments
4 Catalogue

A catalogue providing key information on (biobank) studies housed at AMC Biobank can help researchers to find interesting cohorts/samples for their studies and enables them to request these specific samples, through a standardized and transparent process.

5 Quality, safety, and environment

Quality management: AMC Biobank aims to achieve ISO9001 certification in 2015

Safety: AMC Biobank complies to (inter)national standards, such as the PGS15 guideline for the storage of dangerous goods.

Environment: AMC Biobank works with Panasonic MDF-DU700VH-PE Eco VIP -80°C freezer that, by using natural hydrocarbon refrigerants with low global warming potential and minimizing energy consumption, reduce environmental impact and save money. For storage at -196°C, we will use cost-efficient large-scale vapor phase tanks with very low liquid nitrogen consumption

6 Team
Head of the facility Dr. Jörg Hamann
General manager Dr. Wanda Hermans-van Ast
Technician René Minnaar
Technician John Wesseling
Technician Astrid Glas
Informatician Erik van Iperen
From left to right: Astrid – René – John – Jörg – Wanda – Erik
From left to right: Astrid – René – John – Jörg – Wanda – Erik

AMC Biobank

Room L01-124
Academic Medical Center
University of Amsterdam
Meibergdreef 9
1105 AZ Amsterdam
The Netherlands

T +31-(0)20-56 66499
P (intern) 81-57138
F +31-(0)20-56 69671