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Molecular Cytogenetics and Genomics Laboratory

Equine Tissue Sharing Program

Welcome to the Equine Tissue Sharing Program's website! We are an equine tissue bank committed to providing researchers with the highest quality samples available in order to promote and facilitate the discovery of new treatments for equine diseases. Please note that we do not euthanize horses - in fact, one of our goals is to reduce the need to use live animals for research!

Mission Statement

The mission of the Equine Tissue Sharing Program (ETSP) is to provide equine researchers from non-profit and academic institutions access to equine tissues and reagents in order to expand the number of investigators who are able to carry out equine research and increase the quality of research currently being performed. We plan to accomplish these goals in three progressive steps:

  1. Establish an intramural tissue bank and communications infrastructure to facilitate sharing of equine tissues among investigators within Texas A&M University. During this initial phase, we will also develop standard operating protocols (SOPs) for tissue collection, storage, and distribution, record keeping, and quality assurance checks. Start-up funding will be requested from various private agencies, including the Waltham Foundation and the Morris Animal Foundation, to purchase equipment and supplies.
  2. Expand the tissue bank to include researchers at other universities. In order to be useful, we must collect a wide variety of tissues from normal and diseased horses and communicate the scope, volume, and quality of our inventory to the scientific public. This will be accomplished through the creation and maintenance of a website, as well as through publication of data resulting from our periodic quality assurance checks. A business plan will be created to ensure the self-sufficiency of the Program and to ensure its continued operation with no further outside funding.
  3. Expand the Program to include clinical samples from horses seen at the Texas A&M Veterinary Medical Teaching Hospital and develop new equine-specific reagents. Specifically, we will develop protocols to isolate, culture, and passage primary equine cells from a variety of tissues. In addition, we will collaborate with other investigators to create an internet-based collection of assay protocols and antibodies validated for use in horses. At this time, we will apply for funding from the National Institutes of Health to become an Animal and Biological Material Resource Center. In the final phase of this project, we envision the ETSP and the College of Veterinary Medicine as a national clearinghouse for tissues, reagents, and protocols for equine research.


Please check back later for sample request forms

Sample Availability

We currently have samples available from the 9 different tissues listed below.  These particular tissues do not exhibit gross pathology and should be suitable for use as controls in a wide variety of experiments.  In the future, we hope to carry samples from additional tissue types as well as diseased tissue.  If you don't see what you need here, please fill out our Survey and let us know which sample types would be most useful to you.  Although the majority of our current inventory is stored as frozen tissue, future samples will also be available in formalin-fixed paraffin embedded (FFPE) and OCT-embedded formats suitable for histology and immunohistochemistry.

Current Inventory

  • Brain (frontal lobe, cerebellum, and brain stem)
  • Cerebrospinal fluid
  • Heart (left ventricle, apex)
  • Kidney
  • Liver
  • Lung
  • Skeletal muscle (multiple)
  • Spleen
  • Tendon

Quality Control

A cornerstone of the ETSP is the development of protocols and documentation to ensure that all of our samples are of the highest quality. We are currently working to comply with the recommendations of the American Association of Tissue Banks and the National Cancer Institute's Best Practices for Biospeciman Resources. Please check back soon for detailed information regarding our specific quality control procedures.


The ETSP is currently curated by Dr. Samantha Steelman of the Veterinary Integrative Biosciences department at the Texas A&M University College of Veterinary Medicine. Other staff include Dr. Jan Janecka (VIBS) as Faculty Representative and our student workers, Yvette Halley and Emilee Larkin. Start up funds for the ETSP were generously provided by Dr. Bhanu Chowdhary, Professor and Associate Dean for Research and Graduate Studies.

In the future, Dr. Steelman will serve as Director of the program with the help of an advisory board made up of Research, Clinical, and Pathology faculty representatives. Additional representatives from TAMU and outside institutions will be added as the need arises.


Samantha Steelman, PhD
Veterinary Integrative Biosciences
VMA Bldg, Room 107
TAMU 4458
College Station, TX 77843-4458
Phone: (979) 862-1436

For more information, please e-mail us at