Sample Handling Requirements
For our tests, we require a 12 hour fasted serum
sample for non-diabetic patients, and a 6 hour fasted serum sample
for diabetic patients. Please note that the serum MUST be separated
from the blood clot and serum should be transferred into a new
tube. The serum sample may be sent in a red top tube or any other
leak-proof tube without additives as long as the serum is separated
from the clot. Wrap the tube in enough absorbent material (e.g.,
paper towels) to absorb its entire contents in case of a spill, and
place it in a plastic (i.e., ziploc) bag. Include at least one gel
ice pack with your shipment to keep the sample at cool
temperatures. Do not include ice cubes. Please note that lipemia
and hemolysis may interfere with some test results, therefore we
prefer a clear serum sample that is not lipemic or hemolytic to
avoid inaccurate results.
Please find below the absolute minimum SERUM requirements.
Any volume less than this can result in cancellation or incomplete
We recommend that you send your sample with Fed-Ex or UPS.The
various analytes have different stability in serum. Serum samples
for folate analysis should be kept at 4ºC for not longer than 48
hours, but freezing is preferred. Furthermore, folate is light
sensitive and samples should be stored in the dark or wrapped in
foil. Serum TLI and PLI are stable for up to 2 weeks at room
temperature. We recommend that samples with serum cobalamin/folate
analysis as any portion of the testing be shipped overnight either
frozen or at least with included ice packs to keep them cooled
Please note that there is NO Saturday delivery at
Texas A&M University. Note: Due to
delivery procedures at such a large university, packages sent with
the US Postal Service can often be delayed or even lost within
departments. Please DO NOT use the US Postal Service
as a carrier.
Fecal samples for fecal alpha 1 - Proteinase
Inhibitor testing need to arrive frozen at the
laboratory. We highly recommend shipping such samples overnight on
Please prepare your package:
- Plastic, leak-proof sample tubes in a sealed plastic bag (i.e.,
ziploc) with enough absorbent material to soak entire contents in
case of a spill.
- Several frozen gel ice packs to account for longer transport or
dry ice (Shipping dry ice has specific regulations; please contact
your carrier for instructions). Please, do not include ice
- Packing material for extra padding
- We are offering discounted shipping by using
preprinted shipping labels available through our web page (please
contact the lab for more information). Please note that the GI Lab
does not accept packages marked "Bill Receiver".
- Somewhere on the outside of the package, as well as on the
shipping label, please mark "Exempt Animal Specimen." This is a
requirement of the Texas Department of Transportation.
- Please include a completed Submission Form inside the package
with your sample.
In addition to the guidelines listed above, please include the
Please attach the following statement to the outside of the box.
Also include a copy inside the box on official letterhead with a
"This shipment contains only canine/feline serum, urine or
fecal samples (word as appropriate) for diagnostic testing. These
samples are not contagious or infectious, and have not been derived
from animals exposed to agents of agricultural concern. This
shipment has no commercial value."
Shipping information for fecal PCR, IFA, and Bacterial Toxin
For these tests we will require up to 1 gram of fresh feces. For
storage and shipping, please collect the sample and store in the
refrigerator for up to one week before shipping. Fresh samples are
ideal. Please ship samples cooled overnight with gel ice packs.
PLEASE NOTE: We are offering discounted
shipping by using preprinted shipping labels available
through our web page (please contact the lab for more