Overview: Collection, Services & Support

Biospecimen Collection

The distinctive feature of Ontario Tumour Bank is direct control over every aspect of collection, storage and access to an extensive inventory of cancer biospecimens with rich, yet de-identified, clinical data.

What we offer


  • Fresh-frozen tissue
  • Paraffin-embedded tissue
  • Tumour & normal-adjacent tissues
  • Peripheral blood (fresh whole blood, buffy coat, plasma & cell-free plasma)
  • Derivatives (DNA, RNA, tissue microarrays)

Available Clinical Data

  • Histopathology
  • Patient history
  • Family history
  • Surgery
  • Systemic therapy
  • Radiotherapy
  • Outcome/follow-up


OTB practices and procedures are designed to maximize the molecular and histological quality of the samples and accuracy of accompanying clinical data.

How do I request samples?

The application process is designed to be easy and straightforward while maintaining compliance with ethical standards and regulation.

Start a sample or data request

Access Fees

Academic Fees

Not-for-profit and government-funded researchers worldwide benefit from highly subsidized rates. By reducing cost as a barrier to access, OTB can better fulfil its mandate to support cancer research.

The access fees extended to this category of researchers are below cost, with Ontario academic researchers at OTB’s partner institutions receiving the deepest discount. OTB covers the remainder of the cost of collection as an in-kind contribution. This is made possible through OTB’s core funding provided through the Ontario Institute for Cancer Research.

Industry Fees

Final cost is dependent on researcher category, location, and type of materials. Access fees charged to commercially-funded and industry researchers are not subsidized. Please contact OTB directly for a detailed quote customized to your research needs.

Quotes and Grant Support Letters

Did you know? OTB can provide detailed quotes and/or letters of understanding in support of funding applications. Please email tumourbank@oicr.on.ca for further information.