You can contribute to the APCB by donating tissue or making a monetary contribution.

FAQs for Donors

What is the Australian Prostate Cancer BioResource (APCB)?

The Australian Prostate Cancer BioResource (APCB) is a federated tissue bank comprised of four nodes located in Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne and Adelaide. It is a “not for profit” tissue bank, funded jointly by the National Health & Medical Research Council (NHMRC) and the Prostate Cancer Foundation of Australia (PCFA). It provides services for Australian and international clinicians and researchers to investigate prostate cancer.

The donation of biological samples such as tissue and bloods for research is of fundamental importance to further our understanding of the causes of prostate disease including prostate cancer and to develop more effective diagnostic tools and treatments.

The research-based BioResource has been established to provide a service to medical science. Its purpose is to support medical research into the diagnosis and treatment of prostate cancer.


What does the bank collect?

The bank collects and stores biological samples including tissue, and blood for future research. We also collect information about your health relevant to prostate disease.

Why is tissue needed for scientific research?

Prostate diseases and prostate cancer are common problems in Australian men. The number of cases of prostate cancer diagnosed each year has increased dramatically. Currently there are a number of treatments available for prostate cancer and previous research using donated samples has assisted in the development of some of the new treatment options currently available.

Are there any risks involved?

There are no physical risks in collecting tissue for the Tissue Bank that are additional to the risks involved in the operation you are already going to have. No additional tissue will be taken over what is required for your treatment.

Collection of a blood sample can sometimes leave a small bruise and you may feel a small amount of local pain. All procedures are carried out by suitably qualified professional staff and your welfare is their top priority.

Your participation is voluntary and you may withdraw at any time you wish without affecting your care in any way.

What cost is involved in a sample donation?

There is no cost involved in making a sample donation. Should a donor or their family & friends wish to make a donation to support the BioResource & its associated research, the APCB would be most grateful for such additional generosity.

Please contact the Coordinator in your state for details.

What will happen if I agree to participate?

During surgery, your urologist will remove some tissue as part of your routine treatment/diagnosis and the results of pathology tests on this tissue will be used to plan your care. Generally not all the removed tissue is needed for diagnosis and it is this ‘left over’ tissue that we invite you to donate. The amount stored will depend on how much is available.

We would also like to obtain a blood sample (20-25mls, or 2-3 tubes) to match with the tissue. After collection, the samples undergo an initial processing, and then the components will be stored frozen to allow future research to be undertaken.

You can donate a blood sample to the Tissue Bank even if you are not donating tissue. If you consent to have a blood sample collected it will be done prior to your surgery or at a time that is convenient to you, for example, when you are having other routine tests.


What research is performed on the samples?

We cannot advise as to the exact nature of the research, as a researcher’s needs change with time and there are continuing advances in technology allowing for a wider range of scientific research. However, researchers will only be able to access stored samples and clinical information after obtaining approval for their research projects from their institutional Human Research Ethics Committee and the APCB’s Tissue Access Committee. This is to ensure the samples are used ethically and is only provided to feasible research projects with scientific merit.

What are the benefits involved?

There will be no direct benefit to you from donating your biological samples. However, the information obtained from this project may be of benefit to men with prostate disease in the future

What if I decide to withdraw after giving consent?

You are free to withdraw your consent at any time without prejudice. Your decision will be fully respected and no questions will be asked.

How do I make preparations for a donation?

Your Urologist will provide information in relation to the APCB. Once you have read the information sheet and do not have any questions, you will need to sign the consent form. You will be contacted by the Coordinator in your state.

If you do have any question regarding any aspects of your sample donation or the APCB please do not hesitate to contact the Coordinator in your state.

If I become a donor will this information be private and confidential?

Yes. Once you have consented to participate in the APCB you will be assigned a unique ID under which your samples and clinical information will be stored. Once the donation has occurred, the samples will be stored securely at the relevant State Node of the APCB. Each sample will also only be identified by a unique identification number. Donor details are held securely on computer database and in locked files. Only authorized Tissue Bank staff will have access to your personal information.

Researchers have access to the samples and associated clinical information only through the unique identification number. No donor is ever identified by name in any publication(s) or presentation(s) that results from the research.