Bridging the collaboration gap: Real-time identification of clinical specimens for biomedical research

In this 2020 article published in Journal of Pathology Informatics, Durant et al. of the Yale New Haven Health system present the results of their attempt to automate the identification and notification of laboratory biospecimens for biomedical researchers. Noting biospecimens’ value to basic, translational, and clinical research, the authors wanted to get around the “technical, logistic, regulatory, and ethical challenges” of accessing biospecimen data. They developed Prism, a tool built on open-source technology for efficiently identifying and notifying investigators of biospecimen availability in real time. The authors present details of two use cases and conclude that their “solution is highly scalable to meet the needs of even large academic centers and reference laboratories,” while also guaranteeing that the virtualization of the associated workflow “within a microservices environment does not introduce a performance penalty.”

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