1. PMI: Post Mortem Interval (warm ischemic time, and possibly cold ischemic time too)- the time from when the donor passes until the specimen is removed from the donor’s body.
  2. Warm ischemic time:
    Deceased: the time between the donor passing and the tissue sample being removed from the body or the time between the donor dying and the donor’s body being refrigerated. For examples, donors who have undergone post mortem examination at the Coroner’s Office may have quite long cold ischemic times.
    Clinical: the time between the blood being cut off from that particular tissue sample and the tissue being refrigerated, frozen or fixed.
  3. Draw time: the time between blood being drawn and processed (for example, to serum or plasma, or frozen)
  4. TNM, ypT & associated terms: these relate to cancer staging (pathology “p” vs clinical “c”) for detailed explanations, see:


For example, ypT2 means pathology staging (p) of a pre-treated tumor (y) stage 2. Exactly what is implied by “stage 2” depends on the particular cancer type, with different tumor sizes being denoted & locations of invasiveness depending on the physiological site.

  1. % tumor: this can be measured as % tumor nuclei, or % tumor by surface area, and is determined by a pathologist using an FFPE cancer sample. Please specify if you particularly prefer one type of measurement over the other.
  2. Maximum acceptable time from sampling to delivery: This is the time from the fresh tissue sample or blood sample being removed from the donor to being delivered to your lab.
  3. Normal adjacent: this is normal tissue from the same organ or tissue as a diseased tissue sample and removed as part of the same surgery as part of the surgeon’s process to try to ensure all of the disease is removed. (It does not mean that the donor is necessarily free of all other known diseases or cancers in other parts of the body. Please specify your criteria carefully.)
  4. NAT: Normal Adjacent to Tumor: this is normal margin tissue taken from the same organ or tissue as the cancer sample & resected during surgery to remove a tumor to ensure that all of the tumor is removed.