Programs & Initiatives
NDRI partnered with the Lyme Disease Biobank (LDB) in 2017 to initiate a Tissue Collection Program, funded by the Bay Area Lyme Foundation. The program’s objective is to collect and bank a diverse group of biospecimens for use by the Lyme disease research community. Lyme disease is a tick-borne infection caused by Borrelia burgdorferi bacteria. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimate that each year approximately 476,000 people in the United States are diagnosed with Lyme disease, yet so much is still unknown about the persistence of bacteria and resultant pathogenesis of tissues following infection. LDB aims to support multiple research studies that will further investigate the roles of infection and inflammation in Lyme disease and support improved prevention, detection, and treatment options for patients.
Drawing on NDRI’s expertise in developing research-driven human tissue donation programs and our own biospecimen recovery network, we collaborated with LDB leadership to develop a customized tissue collection program to meet their tissue biobanking needs. NDRI consents donors for surgical or postmortem donation, manages the donor registry, and coordinates the recovery of tissues at the time of donation. LDB determines patient eligibility and stores all collected tissues for distribution to approved researchers. This initiative is focused on utilizing best practices for donor consent and tissue biobanking from patient cohorts.
In addition to collecting tissues from donors infected with Borrelia bacteria and other tick-borne pathogens, the project also aims to collect extensive clinical information from donors, such as symptoms, demographics, and history of Lyme disease. Researchers can then examine patients’ medical histories to understand how the Borrelia bacteria invade the body, causing symptoms that affect the joints, and the nervous and cardiovascular systems. For more information on donor registration and the impact of the LDB Tissue Collection Program, click the button above.