The world's largest genetic resource chooses the Automation Partnership to supply its automated -80C biological sample archive
The Automation Partnership (TAP), a manufacturer of innovative industrial automation for life science applications, reports that it has been asked to design and implement the -80C automated sample management system for the prestigious UK Biobank project.
The UK Biobank, which will be the world's largest prospective study of the link between disease, environment and genetic factors, requires a storage and retrieval system for around 10 million biological samples from 500,000 participants.
The samples will be stored at -80C, for up to 25 years.
TAP is providing a design study, system prototype and implementation programme to match the UK Biobank's vision.
The final system, named Polar, will allow storage, retrieval and full tracking of all 10 million samples stored at -80C.
It will also accurately pick out any individually 2D coded sample from this vast array of tubes for further research.
Tim Peakman, executive director of the UK Biobank, commented: "After assessing the capabilities of several companies for this project, we found TAP was capable of delivering in three areas that are critical to us.
"We chose TAP because the company has engineering expertise combined with a consultative approach which has allowed them to undertake ambitious automation projects and successfully provide robust systems to match these needs.
"We believe these qualities make TAP the right company to produce an affordable and reliable solution for our requirements".
Ian Ransome, director of sample management and screening at TAP, added: "The UK Biobank is a prestigious venture with the potential to make a fundamental and far-reaching contribution to healthcare research and we are honoured to be part of it.
"At TAP, we have a wealth of experience and expertise in designing and supplying scalable automated systems for biological and compound sample management.
"These attributes will ensure we deliver a robust and secure archive for the UK Biobank".