How to Ship Your Samples
Proper shipping practices are vital to quality results. Saliva, plasma, and serum are complex biological media that don’t like to hang out at the post office for extended periods of time. Failing to follow proper shipping protocols can easily result in data errors, wasting a lot of your time and money.
Transportation of biological samples must adhere to local and federal guidelines. You will need:
- A bioshipper container, which is comprised of an insulated (typically styrofoam) inner container and a cardboard outer container.
Bioshipper containers can be purchased from research suppliers such as Fisher or Salimetrics.
- Absorbent material (paper towel, newspaper, etc.) to line the inside of the shipping box.
- Sample storage boxes, typically the cryostorage boxes that samples were stored in.
- A large, resealable zipper biohazard bag.
- This can be a plastic zipper bag with the biohazard label preprinted, or a commercial Ziploc bag with a biohazard sticker attached.
- Dry ice.
- A UN1845 label, UN3373 label*, and biohazard label (pictured below).
Please ship with dry ice on a Monday, Tuesday or Wednesday via Priority Overnight delivery to our lab at:
Attn: Hill Lab
2955 South University Drive
Winton Scott #246
Fort Worth, TX 76129
- Ensure individual sample tubes are completely closed and leak proof.
- Place and organize frozen samples inside sample storage box(es).
- Place sample storage box(es) inside a large Ziploc biohazard bag or a commercially available Ziploc bag with a biohazard label attached.
- Line the biohazard bag with absorbent material for any potential spillage.
- Place the biohazard bag inside the styrofoam cooler portion of the bioshipper, on dry ice.
- More absorbent material must be placed between the biohazard bag and the dry ice to protect from any potential spills and to stabilize samples within the bioshipper.
- Never let dry ice come in direct contact with the biohazard bag or samples.
- Place more absorbent material on top of the biohazard bag. Place more dry ice on top of absorbent material, and close the styrofoam cooler with the lid.
- Do not tape the Styrofoam lid down. The conversion of dry ice to carbon dioxide will cause an airtight container to expand or possibly explode.
- Be careful not to break the styrofoam cooler or lid while packing.
- Place the styrofoam cooler back in the outer cardboard bioshipper box and tape closed.
- Do not make the cardboard box completely air-tight, due to the gas expansion. Taping up the box completely without any cracks for the release of gasses can make the box explode.
- The bioshipper must be labeled with the following stickers:
- Biological Substance Category B UN 3373*. Note: label size requirements.
- Dry ice UN1845. Note: box weight in kg must be written on this label.
- Biohazard label
- Additional information on sample shipping can be found here.
*Note – Previously, saliva samples were classified as category B “exempt human specimens”, however due to the current Covid-19 pandemic, saliva samples are now classified as a category B “biological substance” which is “potentially infectious” and must be shipped as such unless you are positive that all of the samples being shipped are negative for the virus.*
**Always check with your EHS (environmental health and safety) and IRB groups at your institution before collecting and/or shipping biological samples to ensure you have received proper trainings and are following all applicable local and federal rules and regulations.**
Important Note For Researchers
Following the Eos BioAnalytics Sample Collection Guidelines is crucial to ensure the highest quality sample. If you fail to comply with the collection, handling, storage, and shipping guidelines outlined here and in our Best Practices Guides, we cannot guarantee the quality of your results or the usability of your samples. In the event that we receive contaminated or otherwise compromised samples, a scientist from our research team will contact you to discuss analysis options.