Biological material, GXP supplies, cell and gene therapy cell lines, finished drug products, vaccines, and high-value equipment for academic research institutes, pharma companies, the biotech industry, and government are all part of what GenVault stores onsite. GenVault is one of the nation’s largest and most secure biorepositories, making its home in Greater Philadelphia.

The innovative company is providing a valued resource for the region’s biotechnology community and laboratories across the country with its state-of-the-art facility and sample management program. In addition, GenVault Transportation (GTS) makes it easier to move freezers, at temperature, across town or across the country. These assets, which help advance biological research and development, are a large part of what makes Greater Philadelphia a leading life sciences ecosystem.

GenVault was founded in 2021 by Keith DiMarino, President and CEO. DiMarino has spent the last two decades at DocuVault, which he founded in 2002 to provide the safe, secure storage of documents and records management for industries including healthcare, legal, finance, and education. The expansion to GenVault was born out of the numerous requests for biomaterial storage DiMarino received from DocuVault customers, combined with a vision for a service that would benefit the Greater Philadelphia life sciences ecosystem. The two operations share a half-million-square-foot campus in West Deptford, New Jersey (Gloucester County), custom-built in 2017 to the highest level of integrated safety and security technology that exceeds industry standards.

Beyond logistical considerations, the site is strategically located within easy access to Philadelphia’s life sciences clusters (about 17 miles), Philadelphia International Airport (22 miles), and the busy life sciences corridor that spans New Jersey, New York, Baltimore, and Washington, D.C.

Securing Biosamples

Imagine being responsible for preserving biosamples for future generations, along with transport, storage, accession, monitoring, tracking, reporting, and disposal. That’s the job of GenVault’s expert team, including DiMarino, GenVault’s new Executive Director Andrew Lee, lab technicians, and cryogenic experts.

“Providing truly comprehensive biorepository solutions means never being satisfied with the status quo,” said DiMarino. “We know that the biological samples and products entrusted in our care for storage or transport are irreplaceable, their value immeasurable, so they deserve the most stringent measures we can take to protect them.”

Highest Standards for Safekeeping

GenVault is ISO 9001 registered, ISO 20387 accredited, and CAP-accredited – three of its most recent industry designations, which are part of a long list of quality assurance recognitions. Learn more about its accreditations here.

How GenVault protects biomaterials:

  • Ample Space: Provides storage for up to 60M+ samples in its six-story facility, with 1K+ units for extremely low temperatures.
  • Quick Access: Sample delivery within two hours of request.
  • Building Protection: 12-inch impermeable walls, ESFR Preaction Suppression Systems on every floor, and roof-embedded ESFR sprinklers.
  • Storage Conditions: Temperatures from ambient to cryogenic.
  • Security Measures: 24/7 monitoring, facial recognition, alerts, and badge-restricted access.
  • Backup Methods: Backup diesel fuel generators and other tertiary backup power systems.

The Value of GenVault

GenVault can often provide a more cost-effective solution than storing materials onsite. The 24/7 security measures, as well as electrical and stability redundancies, provide a safer storage solution than keeping materials onsite. While people may be focused on external threats, more often costly accidents occur from innocent, internal actions. The recently publicized lawsuit involving an incident in which a janitor destroyed decades of valuable research by turning off a freezer alarm is just one example of how costly it may be to keep materials onsite rather than stored at a trusted facility.

Additionally, more frequent and severe storms have also become a cause for concern. Flash floods, tornadoes, and power outages can create a disaster in moments if the facility isn’t adequately prepared.

Splitting cell lines and maintaining backup samples across multiple locations can minimize the impact of localized incidents and ensure the preservation of critical resources. Not only does this safeguard against costly losses, but it also enables greater research continuity and provides more space onsite for valuable research activities. Learn more about the storage benefits here.

For more information about GenVault’s services, visit Watch this newsletter for an upcoming “Discovery Starts with Me” feature with a GenVault lab technician (or cryogenic expert) describing how they care for the bioinventory at GenVault, and what they like about living and working in Greater Philadelphia.

The Chamber offers a jobs opportunities board on its Select Greater Philadelphia website to learn more about employment in the region’s rapidly expanding life sciences ecosystem.