Testing protocols: care of biological samples in a rural setting.

Research paper by Mary Beth Flanders MB Stepans, Susan L SL Wilhelm, T Kim TK Rodehorst, Derek D Smith, Clarann C Weinert

Indexed on: 12 Feb '09Published on: 12 Feb '09Published in: Clinical nursing research


The purpose of this study is to evaluate collection, transport, and storage protocols of urine and air allergen samples from infants in a rural setting. Infant urine and aeroallergen samples (n = 21) are collected in the home setting in rural areas where time and distance to the central laboratory is a consideration. Urine samples are analyzed using ELISA tests after being transported using three different techniques: (a) ambient temperature, (b) dry ice, and (c) packaged on dry ice and shipped commercially. Following initial ELISA testing for levels of cytokines, urine samples are frozen at -70 degrees Celsius for 6 months. Samples are then reanalyzed for levels of cytokines. Dust samples are analyzed for levels of aeroallergens, stored at 4 degrees for 6 months, and reanalyzed. The integrity of samples varies by biomarker, shipment temperature, and storage time, creating a high degree of variability in results.