Biomarker Assay Laboratory (BAL)

For more than 30 years, NCRAD has been a key research infrastructure for NIA to support ADRD research. NCRAD’s mission has grown from a DNA storage repository for genetic studies to a specialized research repository that supports a broad range of biospecimens and focuses on the aspects of sample collection, storage, distribution, and processing. NCRAD’s success is driven by the use of standard operating procedures to ensure uniformity and to minimizing the impact of preanalytical variables on downstream sample analyses.

With the establishment of the Biomarker Assay Laboratory (BAL), NCRAD has expanded our services to include processing of well-established fluid-based biomarkers and provide more support to research studies. The goal is to ensure standardized processing and reliable research biomarker results. This approach allows for longitudinal quality monitoring and consistent delivery of results over time, as well as the opportunity for cross-laboratory comparability studies.

Plasma assays currently available in the BAL:

Quanterix Simoa HD-X (Research Use Only)

  • Nf-Light Advantage Kit
  • Neurology 2 Plex B Advantage Kit (NfL, GFAP)
  • Neurology 4 Plex E Advantage Kit (NfL, GFAP, Abeta 40, Abeta 42)
  • pTau 181 v2 Advantage Kit
  • pTau 217 Alzpath

Fujirebio Lumipulse Plasma (Research Use Only)

  • Lumipulse G β-Amyloid 1-42 Kit
  • Lumipulse G β-Amyloid 1-40 Kit
  • pTau 181

Fujirebio Lumipulse CSF (Research Use Only): Anticipated Summer/Fall 2023

  • Lumipulse G β-Amyloid 1-42 Kit
  • Lumipulse G β-Amyloid 1-40 Kit
  • pTau 181

All assays processed at the NCRAD Biomarker Assay Laboratory are for research use only. For investigators interested in CLIA results, requests can be facilitated by NCRAD, in collaboration with C2N. A more detailed description of the biomarkers, assays, and platforms utilized in the NCRAD BAL is available here.

To request a quote and/or letter of support for the above assays through NCRAD, please complete the following form.

Jeff Dage, Ph.D.

Jeff Dage, Ph.D., joined Indiana University School of Medicine from Eli Lilly & Co in August of 2021 as a Senior Research Professor of Neurology and Primary Member, Stark Neurosciences Research Institute. He is a NCRAD co-investigator and is the Scientific Director of the Biomarker Assay Laboratory.

Kristen Russ, Ph.D.

Kristen Russ, Ph.D., has been with Indiana University School of Medicine since August 2018. In 2021, she joined NCRAD as an Assistant Research Professor of Medical and Molecular Genetics. She is a NCRAD co-investigator and the Biomarker Assay Laboratory Director.

Clairisa Stayton, BS

Clairisa Stayton, BS, has been with Indiana University School of Medicine since June 2017. In 2022, she joined NCRAD as the Clinical Research Coordinator for the Biomarker Assay Laboratory. To reach Clairisa directly email or call (317) 278-1672

Sample Collection

To ensure the highest quality and most consistent assay results, NCRAD recommends standard uniform collection of biospecimens as outlined by the Standardization of Alzheimer’s Blood Biomarkers (SABB) working group.

(Verberk, I. M., Misdorp, E. O., Koelewijn, J., Ball, A. J., Blennow, K., Dage, J. L., ... & Teunissen, C. E. Characterization of pre-analytical sample handling effects on a panel of Alzheimer's disease-related blood-based biomarkers: Results from the Standardization of Alzheimer's Blood Biomarkers (SABB) working group. Alzheimer's & dementia: the journal of the Alzheimer's Association.)

NCRAD recommends the use of polypropylene for all collection and processing materials.

Sample Processing

BAL Schematics - Plasma, Buffy Coat
BAL Schematics - Plasma

Shipping Information

Please ship frozen specimens Monday – Wednesday.
Please organize the samples within their shipment box in the same order as they are listed on the sample manifest.
Please send the sample manifest and shipment tracking number to in advance of shipping the samples. This ensures that the BAL is available to receive the shipment and can track the shipment if necessary.