If you are interested in collecting and storing human material for research purposes at Imperial College London or Imperial College Healthcare Trust (ICHT), you must register your collection with the Tissue Bank. Unless the collection and storage of that material are currently covered by project specific REC/Health Research Authority (HRA) approval e.g. a HRA cohort study or clinical trial. 

If the collection has its own REC approval, the study must be registered on the JRO's DOCUMAS system, and the appropriate tab on tissue collection completed.

At the end of the REC approval for the study, samples may be retained by registering as a sub-collection with the Tissue Bank.


There are three main types of sub-collection

  1. Those that use generic consent materials that are approved under the Tissue Bank's own REC approval.
  2. Those that have used consent materials approved under a different REC approval, and that the original REC approval has lapsed (e.g. a clinical trial that has finished recruiting but the Trial Management Committee wish to retain the human samples collected as part of the trial).
  3. Collections of human material that have been collected outside the UK or are being supplied by other institutions in the UK.

An application to host a sub-collection must be made on the ICHTB database. If you are a Principal Investigator who already holds a sub-collection, just log on to the database using your College username and password and click 'Apply to host a sub-collection. If you wish to open your first sub-collection please contact the Tissue Bank so that we can register you appropriately. 

Information on what is required to set up and run a sub-collection can be found in the document Sub-collection Management (PDF).

Registration of a sub-collection only enables the collection and storage of human samples. A research project application must be made to the Tissue Bank, in order to use the samples in research. For more information, see Using Human Samples in Research.