Phenomics Australia’s Biobanking service provides a database and cryobank of mouse sperm and embryos essential for discovering and distributing disease models in Australia.
A biobank is a type of repository that stores biological samples for eventual reuse in future. Biobanking mouse strains has many benefits to researchers, is an important part of any colony management plan. It reduces the risk of important research projects being stalled or halted entirely due to unexpected events such as disease, genetic contamination, or natural disaster. Maintaining cryopreserved samples also allows researchers to decrease the size of active research colonies, further reducing costs.
We curate and regularly update two databases of gene variant mouse strains held as cryopreserved stock or colonies maintained Australia’s leading research institutions. Through the Australian Phenome Bank, researchers can submit strains or strain information to the archive, and search for strains carrying a genetic alteration or phenotype of interest. Our Missense Mutation Library offers details on over 500,000 single nucleotide variants generated as missence, nonsense and splice variants.
We are also active members of the International Mouse Phenotyping Consortium (IMPC), offering searchable databases of genomic and phenotypic information for in vivo disease models.
We operate two laboratories offering sperm and embryo cryopreservation according to best practice protocols. This allows duplicate storage of samples at separate facilities. Our liquid nitrogen vapour phase tanks are held in secure and automated facilities with 24/7 monitoring and alarm systems notifying staff of potential storage problems.
Reanimation of cryopreserved strains is done using in vitro fertilisation (IVF) using the latest and most efficient IVF techniques. We can then either maintain your reanimated strains on site or ship to your chosen facility.
We operate Department of Agriculture Quarantine Approved Premises to enable the import and export of biological material and animals.
We work closely together with other research institutes such as the Jackson Laboratory, the world’s most comprehensive mouse resource repository providing international access for Australian researchers.
Supported by Phenomics Australia, the Australian Phenome Bank (APB) is both a physical repository and a database of genetically modified mouse strains used in medical research in Australia. The APB operates as a national infrastructure partnership between ANU and Monash and provides essential banking and distribution of mouse strains in Australia. The services of cryopreservation, storage, reanimation, distribution and importation are streamlined into packages to lower costs and protect research.
The APB was established and is still generously supported by the Australian Government (NHMRC and NCRIS). It safeguards and maximises the value of the enormous investment in creating mouse strains for medical research. Centralised repositories are essential if the valuable mouse strains and models that have been developed are to be securely preserved and fully exploited. Ensuring the ongoing availability of these mouse strains preserves the investment made in creating and characterising them and creates a global resource of enormous value.
The APB maintains the cryo-storage of ~4,000 lines produced over the last two decades and provides continued data curation of new lines being produced and made available across Australia and New Zealand to enhance accessibility, sharing and ensure value to the research community.