April 05, 2020

DHVI Accessioning Unit Response to COVID-19

It’s been a busy month for members of the DHVI Accessioning Unit and Repository (AU), which is directed by Dr. Tony Moody. As one of the biorepositories on campus, the AU is now responsible for processing samples for two COVID-19 studies at Duke. Thad Gurley, manager of the AU, is currently in talks with Duke Investigators for potentially bringing in additional studies. It’s been a whirlwind of change, but Gurley and team are dedicated to making it work. To process samples safely, AU team members, Susan Stager, Hana Ballard, Eric Taylor, Tarra Von Holle, Brenna Harrington, Jacob Meyer, Yousef Abuahmad, and Caroline Jones are splitting half day shifts, Monday through Saturday, two to three days a week. Mr. Gurley is also working around the clock with Duke Investigators, handling logistics and processing matters for all incoming samples. The AU is poised to handle the urgency of the coronavirus studies at Duke due to its leadership and team experience. "We're set up to do what needs to be done," says Mr. Gurley. In addition to processing samples, Gurley is training DHVI and SORF employees on how to handle and process bio-containment level 2 Enhanced samples. This training will ensure the safety of Duke employees while handling COVID-19 samples. 

During these challenging times, Mr. Gurley and team are doing an extraordinary job of coming together to handle the urgency and magnitude of this new situation. “Tony and I are fortunate to have such a strong team in the AU,” he says, “their willingness to do what it takes to get the job done has been tremendous”.