Clinical Laboratory Core
Mary Walter, Ph.D., Director
Scientists in the Clinical Laboratory Core collaborate with investigators from across the Clinical Research Program to provide sensitive, inexpensive, and reproducible analyses. We also develop new assays and support a wide range of clinical studies in the fields of endocrinology, hepatology, nephrology, and metabolism. These analyses include measurement of gut hormones, adipokines, oxidative stress markers, cytokines, and other biomarkers in biologic fluids that are related to diabetes, endocrine, and metabolic research. The Laboratory has added new hormone assays to reflect the current research trends, as well as the Luminex technology, which has greatly expanded our analytical capabilities. The Laboratory performs extensive validation of all assays before conducting routine sample analyses of clinical specimens. After assay validation, the Laboratory coordinates with clinical research investigators to establish a charge-back fee structure. This structure supports ongoing and routine specimen analyses, charging for the cost of supplies only. Additionally, the Laboratory works to reduce costs of assays by centralizing the purchase of common supplies used in specimen analyses and by taking advantage of bulk purchasing discounts. This approach yields savings that are passed along to the investigators utilizing the Laboratory’s services. Assays are uniquely tailored to meet the needs of the investigator, thus saving on sample volume and promoting cost efficiency in all cases.
The Clinical Laboratory Core also provides a service that allows for simple access to human sample acquisition, processing, tracking, and storage in accordance with current legislation. The acquisition process involves preparation of tubes for blood draw to achieve the lowest levels of degradation. Samples are processed within 1 hour of blood collection to ensure thermal preservation. The Laboratory recently purchased a new specimen-tracking database. This web-based tool is customizable and provides quick, reliable, and accurate accounting for clinical specimens stored with the Clinical Laboratory Core.