University Hospital Foundation partnership supports Alberta’s COVID-19 biorepository


Edmonton AB – June 5, 2020 – The University Hospital Foundation in partnership with five major health foundations, is building a safe biorepository to preserve COVID-19 samples, to support world-class medical research in combatting COVID-19.


The new biorepository is now collecting, cataloguing and storing samples in sophisticated refrigeration equipment. There are two hubs at the universities of Alberta and Calgary.


“Research in how to test for, treat and prevent COVID-19 is essential to our healthy future,” said Tyler Shandro, Minister of Health. “I commend all the partners on collaborating to make this happen, and I assure all Albertans that the biorepository poses no risk to public health.”


Dozens of Alberta-based researchers working on more than 30 Alberta research projects need the COVID-19 samples to explore areas like rapid point-of-care testing, drugs, antibody testing, and genome sequencing. Some studies involve collaborations with scientists across North America.


“We are thinking about the future and about deeper study of the coronavirus through clinical and academic research,” said Dr. Verna Yiu, AHS President and CEO. “We are extremely grateful to our foundation partners for their contribution towards this project that will benefit Albertans today and for years to come.”


Building the $300,000 biorepository is the result of a partnership among the University Hospital Foundation, Calgary Health Trust, Alberta Cancer Foundation, Stollery Children’s Hospital Foundation, Alberta Children’s Hospital Foundation and the Royal Alexandra Hospital Foundation. Alberta Health Services and its subsidiary, Alberta Precision Laboratories, that will fund operations and maintenance.


“Research is the catalyst to developing effective treatment of COVID-19, and safely stored COVID-19 samples are the fuel for that research,” said Dr. Jodi L. Abbott, President & CEO of the University Hospital Foundation. “We are proud to support this initiative which will give Alberta’s world-class researchers access to the biological material they need to further study the virus. The collaboration between the province’s major health partners ensures Alberta’s experts have support to advance COVID-19 research locally.”


To find out more about what the University Hospital Foundation is doing to support the University of Alberta Hospital site during the COVID-19 pandemic visit


For the most recent updates on COVID-19 in Alberta visit


University Hospital Foundation

The University Hospital Foundation raises and manages funds to advance patient care, research and healthcare innovation at the University of Alberta Hospital, the Mazankowski Alberta Heart Institute and the Kaye Edmonton Clinic, as well as to research at the University of Alberta and care in the community though AHS. For more information visit

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  • Mikiko Van Horn
  • Communications Specialist
    University Hospital Foundation

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