Irene Orlow: Research Overview

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The Molecular Epidemiology Laboratory

Led by Dr. Irene Orlow, the Molecular Epidemiology Laboratory participates in self-initiated research & supports investigations from the Population Sciences Research and Clinical Research programs that involve handling and testing of a variety of human specimens.

How we do it

Experimental Approach
  • Aims aligned with type of biospecimens, and short- and long-term analytical plan
  • Analytical plan determines initial processing
  • Sample processing plan is reviewed and technology is selected
  • Assays are designed and newly developed as needed, and validated
  • Quality assurance (QA) and quality control (QC) delineated
Biospecimens & Logistics
  • Collection details and labeling reviewed
  • Kits and instructions provided
  • Delivery details and communications instructed
  • Biosafety considered at each step
Biospecimens Handling & Assay Development
  • Appropriate range of laboratory techniques
  • Step-by step environment considerations
  • Isolation
  • Quality- , quantity- ,  and viability- assessment
  • Empirical assay design
Testing & Data Generation
  • Validation of assay, selection of lab controls
  • Tracking and deliverables established
  • Testing of Study Specimens and laboratory controls
Quality Control & Data Handling
  • Review of visual data
  • Data entry
  • Descriptive analysis, and comparison to empirical parameters
  • Data cleaning and summary
Samples Distribution & Banking
  • Establishment of sample volumes and configuration or layout
  • Selection of the most appropriate environmental conditions
  • Aliquoting for collaborating laboratories and consortia
  • Preliminary preparation for high throughput testing
  • Banking for additional and/or future investigations
  • Monitoring on-site, off-site, and QC