Journal of Biomolecular NMR

, Volume 49, Issue 3–4, pp 231–243 | Cite as

Standard operating procedures for pre-analytical handling of blood and urine for metabolomic studies and biobanks

  • Patrizia Bernini
  • Ivano Bertini
  • Claudio Luchinat
  • Paola Nincheri
  • Samuele Staderini
  • Paola Turano


1H NMR metabolic profiling of urine, serum and plasma has been used to monitor the impact of the pre-analytical steps on the sample quality and stability in order to propose standard operating procedures (SOPs) for deposition in biobanks. We analyzed the quality of serum and plasma samples as a function of the elapsed time (t = 0−4 h) between blood collection and processing and of the time from processing to freezing (up to 24 h). The stability of the urine metabolic profile over time (up to 24 h) at various storage temperatures was monitored as a function of the different pre-analytical treatments like pre-storage centrifugation, filtration, and addition of the bacteriostatic preservative sodium azide. Appreciable changes in the profiles, reflecting changes in the concentration of a number of metabolites, were detected and discussed in terms of chemical and enzymatic reactions for both blood and urine samples. Appropriate procedures for blood derivatives collection and urine preservation/storage that allow maintaining as much as possible the original metabolic profile of the fresh samples emerge, and are proposed as SOPs for biobanking.


Metabolomics NMR spectroscopy Serum Plasma Urine Biobanks 



Research funded by the European Union Seventh Framework Programme [FP7/2007-2013] under grant agreement no 222916. Manfred Spraul and Hartmut Schäfer (Bruker BioSpin) are acknowledged for many discussions over the years. We thank Monica Biondi for her assistance in blood collection.

Supplementary material

10858_2011_9489_MOESM1_ESM.pdf (1017 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (PDF 1016 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Patrizia Bernini
    • 1
    • 3
  • Ivano Bertini
    • 1
    • 2
  • Claudio Luchinat
    • 1
    • 2
  • Paola Nincheri
    • 3
  • Samuele Staderini
    • 3
  • Paola Turano
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Magnetic Resonance Center (CERM)University of FlorenceSesto FiorentinoItaly
  2. 2.Department of ChemistryUniversity of FlorenceSesto FiorentinoItaly
  3. 3.FiorGen FoundationSesto FiorentinoItaly

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