General Program Information

To view the Final Program, click below.

Final Program


For a quick glance at symposium times and descriptions, click on the corresponding symposium below.

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Getting to Know ISBER

8:00am – 9:00am

Find out more about ISBER and get the chance to interact with new members. All meeting participants welcome and encouraged to attend.

Symposium 1 – Polar Shift: How Biobanking is Changing Our Thinking and the World

9:15am – 12:30pm

This plenary session will focus on demonstrating how biobanking has changed, and is still changing the world. The talks will highlight how evidence derived from biobanking, and its associated practices, is shown to be instrumental in new discoveries, new processes, and new ways of thinking that are changing practices in medicine, agriculture and veterinary/environmental arenas. It’s about showing the successes, and lessons learned from the last 20 years that are now informing the wider scientific community and pushing back the boundaries. It’s why we’re all here….

Updates on the Changes to the Common Rule

12:20pm – 1:20pm

Hear the latest on the changes to the Common Rule and their impacts on your daily operations!

Roundtable discussions

12:20pm – 1:20pm

Sign up to join us at a roundtable to discuss the latest hot topics in biobanking!

Symposium 2A (Concurrent) – To Tell or Not to Tell: The Practical Aspects of Returning Individual Research Results and Incidental Findings to Participants

1:30pm – 4:00pm

There has been considerable discussion and many publications in the literature about the return of research results and incidental findings to participants who have contributed their specimens for research. Much of this discussion has focused on the ethical arguments for and against returning research results and incidental findings, when findings should be returned and some of the practical implementation problems with doing so. In this session, biobankers will share their policies and actual experiences with returning research results to participants, challenges that they faced and approaches that they used to overcome them. The session will consist of a series of short presentations followed by an extensive interactive panel and audience discussion period.

Symposium 2B (Concurrent) – Liquid Specimens - New Frontier for Applications of Emerging Technologies

1:30pm – 4:00pm

Analyses of “Liquid Specimens” focusing on the analysis of circulating tumor cells (CTCs), circulating cell-free nucleic acids (DNA, RNA, miRNA) and exosomes in body fluids (e.g., blood, urine, cerebrospinal fluid) of patients has received enormous attention because these procedures are less invasive than tissue biopsies and allow real-time monitoring of dynamic changes in disease conditions. Analyses of “Liquid Specimens” have paved new diagnostic avenues with obvious clinical implications for personalized medicine. The present session will focus on key areas of the emerging technologies, current applications and future perspectives of “Liquid Specimens” including detection of cancer, prenatal diagnostics, and organ transplant rejection.

Special Topics – What’s on the Horizon: Emerging Tools in Biobanking and Biospecimen Research

4:15pm – 5:15pm

This session will focus on how researchers are developing new biobanking tools/methodologies
to improve research. The presentations will describe the new methodologies and
techniques, their impact on research, and strategies for incorporating these new innovations
into biobank operations. The audience will benefit from a discussion on how each tool can be
adapted to or used by other projects.

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

ISBER 5K Run/Walk/Sleep (Separate Registration Required)

6:00am – 7:30am

Click here to find out more!

Platinum Corporate Partner Workshops

7:45am – 8:45am

Workshop 1A – ATCC 

MJFF and ATCC Partnering for Success

Symposium 3A (Concurrent) – Spotlight on Innovation in Social Sustainability: Developing Evidence-Driven Best Practices in Biobanking

9:00am – 12:00pm

Biobank Sustainability consists of focus and attention on the Financial, Operation and Social aspects to be successful.  This 2017 ISBER symposium focuses on importance of stakeholder involvement and engagement to develop and maintain social sustainability of biobanks in all sectors.  Topics that will be presented and discussed include communications with stakeholder communities; social networking strategies; development of strategies/business planning to ensure long-term quality and value for contributor and user communities.

Symposium 3B (Concurrent) – Biospecimen Quality for the Next Generation: Innovations and Implications

9:00am – 12:00pm

Biospecimens are the essential substrates for the “Next Generation” sequencing technologies that have revolutionized genomics and molecular biology. This session will present the reciprocal impacts of biospecimen quality on Next Generation technologies, the diverse applications and quality considerations associated with these technologies and the anticipated future demands and best practices.

Lunch Corporate Symposium - Global Specimen Solutions

12:15pm – 1:15pm

Making Your Data eValuable


Pharmaceutical companies collect vast amounts of data during a clinical trial, yet only ~20%
of the data is used. Disparate data sources, unaligned data, and incomplete data sets prevent
in-life interventions, lead to delays in go-to-market, and can lead to non-compliance with
regulations. In this symposium, industry leaders will share their experiences with large data
sets and how they have been able to incorporate tools into their departments.
The audience will glean:
• How to navigate through their department/company to demonstrate that handling large
data is complex
• How to evaluate tools to handle large data sets

Innovative Technologies

1:30pm – 2:30pm

Hear about the latest technologies being developed and used in biobanking in these short presentations!

Education and Training Workshops


3:00pm – 4:00pm

Educational Workshop 1: Thinning
the Collection – Can Biobanks Ever
Discard Samples



3:00pm – 4:00pm

Educational Workshop 2: Limitations
affecting the Use of Human and
Animal Tissues in Research: What the
Literature Tells Biorepositories

3:00pm – 4:00pm

Educational Workshop 3: Business
Planning for Biobanking

Contributed Paper Session 1: Aligning Ethical, Legal, Societal Issues: "Expectations, Evidence and Diversity"

4:15pm – 5:30pm

Aligning Ethical, Legal, Societal Issues: ‘Expectations, Evidence and Diversity’

Contributed Paper Session 2: Planning and Sharing: Tools and Approaches for Repository Management

4:15pm – 5:30pm

Planning and Sharing: Tools and Approaches for Repository Management

Exhibitor and Poster Networking Evening

5:30pm – 7:30pm

Join us for drinks and hors d’oeuvres to visit the ISBER exhibits and posters!

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Platinum Corporate Partner Workshops

8:00am – 9:00am

Workshop 2A – BSI Systems
Engage the Full Potential of Your
Biorepository Network


8:00am – 9:00am

Workshop 2B – Brooks Life Science Systems
Smarter Sample Management –
Establishing a Sustainable Biobank
by Connecting Stored Samples with
Actionable Data

8:00am – 9:00am

Workshop 2C – Chart MVE
Sample Storage Integrity in Remote

Contributed Paper Session 3: Fit-For-Purpose Applications - Biospecimen Research and Sample Quality

9:15am – 11:30am

Fit-For-Purpose Applications – Biospecimen Research and Sample Quality

Contributed Paper Session 4

9:15am – 11:30am

Education and Training Workshops






11:30am – 1:00pm

Educational Workshop 4:
Commercialization and Access
Benefit-Sharing Part 1: Public and
Community perspectives on sample



11:30am – 1:00pm

Educational Workshop 5: The Practice
(and Art) of Biospecimen Governance



11:30am – 1:00pm

Educational Workshop 6: First, Do No
Harm: Best Practices and Regulatory
Requirements when Procuring Tissue
Specimens in the Clinical Setting




1:45pm – 3:30pm

Educational Workshop 7:
Commercialization and Access
Benefit-Sharing Part 2: Private & Legal
Perspectives and Commercialization
Use Cases

1:45pm – 3:30pm

Educational Workshop 8: Public
Education about Biobanks

1:45pm – 3:30pm

Educational Workshop 9: Best
Practices for Storage Equipment and


ISBER 2017 Networking Cocktail Reception

5:00pm – 6:30pm

Join us for drinks and hors d’oeuvres in the exhibit hall to mingle with other attendees and network with the exhibitors!

ISBER Gala Dinner (Separate Registration Required)

7:00pm – 11:00pm

Join us for an exciting evening at Casa Loma! Enjoy reception and dinner while you mingle with your biobanking colleagues from around the world.

Friday, May 12, 2017

Platinum Corporate Partner Workshops


8:00am – 9:00am

Workshop 3A – Thermo Fisher Scientific
Use of Mobile Technology to Enhance
Biospecimen Quality and Biobank

8:00am – 9:00am

Workshop 3B – Liconic Instruments
Case Studies: Implementation
of the BiOLiX™ Automated
Biobanking Platform

8:00am – 9:00am

Workshop 3C – Worthington Industries
Global Standardization, Harmonization
and Collaboration III

Symposium 4A (Concurrent) – Expected to Deliver: Biobanking Responses to Emerging Global Threats for and in LMICs

9:15am – 12:15pm

Biobanks are increasingly involved in the responses to emerging global threats. These vary and can include medical emergencies as well as natural disasters, they can be mounted through a distributed network or in the field in low and middle income countries. In this session we will highlight cases where the involvement of biobanks has been central to the response effort and present the evidence and innovation that has allowed them to do so.

Symposium 4B (Concurrent) – Accelerating Clinical and Social Outcomes with Sample Data: It’s All About the Base…and the Exploitation

9:15am – 12:15pm

Biospecimens offer huge potential for improving the lives of patients and the natural world. To unlock this potential, researchers must: 1) establish a knowledge base of critical data that can be derived from the samples, and 2) apply novel data exploitation techniques to drive research and/or enable high quality biospecimen management. This session will explore challenges and solutions in developing an all-important knowledge base and showcase sophisticated data analysis techniques for clinical and social impact.

ISBER Annual Business Meeting

1:15pm – 2:15pm

Members – join us to learn more about ISBER’s activities, financials, strategic plan and leadership!

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