Field logistics

How is the specimen collected?
What supplies are needed?

The requirements for specimen collection are driven entirely by the specimen type and assay procedures. Once the decision is made about what is to be measured, the research staff should consult a laboratory expert in that assessment to help develop collection and storage protocols.

The laboratory procedure manuals, used by the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES), is an example of the detailed information needed for specimen collection and storage. The extensive NHANES Lab Methods inventory includes the following assays:

  • C-Reative Protein
    Blood draw
  • Herpes Simplex Virus I and II
  • Iron
  • RBC Folate and Serum Folate
  • Total Arsenics
  • Two-hour Oral Glucose Tolerance Test
  • Vitamin D

What to Collect

Several CPC projects have collected specimens, including:
  • Blood by venipuncture (serum and plasma, red cells, white cells)
  • Blood spots on filter paper
  • Breast milk
  • Buccal cells or mouth rinse
Vinyl exam gloves
  • Nasal swabs
  • Saliva
  • Stool/feces
  • Urine
  • Vaginal fluids
  • Nail clippings






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