SARS-CoV-2 virus seen under electron microscope

New COVID-19 Biobank at Columbia Opens for Researchers

Columbia University Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons, in partnership with NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital, has established a COVID-19 Biobank as a centralized resource to collect, store, and disseminate biological specimens and clinical data for researchers at Columbia University and elsewhere.

“Our vibrant research community is one of our strengths,” says Michael Shelanski, MD, PhD, senior vice dean for research at VP&S. “We’re coming together in this moment of uncertainty to improve our understanding of COVID-19 and use that understanding to improve how to diagnose, treat, and prevent it.”

The COVID-19 Biobank at Columbia started collecting clinical samples in March from patients who have permitted use of their samples for research related to COVID-19. The Department of Pathology & Cell Biology has established a COVID-19 clinical pathological laboratory and will facilitate access to residual clinical samples. 

Researchers who wish to receive samples must submit an application that will be reviewed by the biobank’s governance committee. 

An executive committee convened by Shelanski and Muredach Reilly, MBBCh, director of the Irving Institute for Clinical and Translational Research and associate dean for clinical and translational research at VP&S, will establish procedures that ensure the COVID-19 Biobank will be a robust resource and data generated from these samples are shared broadly. 

More information for researchers and patients is available at the Columbia University Biobank website