Learning Center

Your central location for online learning and education surrounding all aspects of tissue donation, tissue banking, research and transplantation.

On-Demand Presentations

Find past AATB Webinar and Conference presentations here. Registration provides one year of access to program recordings for one individual.

  • “I Just Want To Be Normal”: Specialty Grafts And Their Impact

    Includes Credits

    An overview of upper extremity tissue donation for the production of fresh osteochondral allografts. We will be taking a look into fresh osteochondral allografts, their surgical uses, and the current request for these allografts and discussing obstacles as well as authorization/recovery strategies in upper extremity donation.

    Learning Objectives:

    1. Attendees will be able to define and describe fresh osteochondral allografts 
    2. Attendees will be able to educate tissue requestors on techniques to gain authorization of upper extremity tissue donation
    3. Attendees will be able to understand and communicate the surgical utilization of fresh osteochondral elbow grafts
    4. Attendees will be able to describe the current need and recipient population of upper extremity fresh osteochondral grafts

    Katie Hanzlicek, CTBS

    Katie Hanzlicek is a Senior Operations Analyst with JRF Ortho where she supports supplier relationships, balances osteochondral allograft supply and demand, and assists with company quality systems. Katie began her career in tissue banking in 2012 as an Operations Technician at AlloSource. She gained hands- on experience in allograft tissue production, cleansing, and packaging, as well as product development, quality management, and technical writing. Katie co-authored two patents (currently pending) on rapid allograft treatment. She will complete her Master of Business Administration degree with a specialization in Change Management the Summer of 2020, aligning her passion in science and business.

    Roy Mayfield, CTBS

    In his current role, Mr. Mayfield manages the daily activity of tissue recovery services clinical staff throughout Gift of Hope's service area. While his main office is in Springfield, IL he splits his time between both the Springfield office and Chicago office. He develops and implements clinical policies, procedures and protocols for all aspects of the tissue donation process. Mr. Mayfield’s area of personal interest is coordinating special tissue and bone grafts for patients at risk of limb loss due to cancer or other medical or traumatic conditions as well as maximizing the recovery of split thickness skin for burn patients in need of the life-saving grafts. Roy's previous work at Gift of Hope included fucntioning as Coroner/FH /Pathologist Liaison in downstate Illinois, working to encourage and facilitate donation in Central Illinois. He also implemented Gift of Hope's embalming program for tissue donors. He worked with Memorial Medical Center and Southern IL School of Medicine on their Vascular Composite Allograph (VCA) program. His role was in training and networking between the OPO and transplant center as well as Department of Plastic Surgery at SIU. Roy is a certified tissue banking specialist, a member of the American Association of Tissue Banks (AATB), and has served as a national committee member for the AATB, speaking at national conventions about successes with special tissue and bone grafts.

  • A Practical Solution to Dealing with Sepsis

    Includes Credits

    Overtime we have seen the number of acceptable donors decrease due to the increase in “sepsis” in a donor medical chart. An examination of our screening process revealed that the way we asked questions, how we reviewed charts and changes that hospitals made when evaluating a patient for possible sepsis have been responsible for some of the decline in the numbers of acceptable donors. In the past a potential donor could be found unsuitable because the donor was reported to be septic or possibly septic or the COD was reported to be sepsis or probable sepsis at initial screening. Sometimes sepsis showed up in a physician note or a review of specific laboratory data which led us to believe that the patient was possibly septic. The challenge was to develop new screening processes to help identify those donors who may not actually be septic while at the same time ensuring that we work within the FDA and AATB regulations. Other organizations, like ourselves, have developed new processes for screening. Though the processes differ in their design and degree of simplicity their goal is the same which is to be able to identify with some degree of accuracy those donors who may not be septic at the time of death. Examples include changing how questions are asked at initial screening, using an algorithm when reviewing a medical chart and even eliminating the need for Call Center personnel to review laboratory data. Today we will go over some of the changes we made, review our algorithm and discuss the advantages and disadvantages to screening this way.

    Learning Objectives:

    1. Summarize and understand the FDA and AATB regulations regarding recovery of donors who are septic.
    2. Understand and discuss some of the "opportunities" to screen for sepsis and the advantages and disadvantages of each.
    3. Discuss a brief history of one tissue banks problems screening for sepsis and the reasons why the process needed to change.
    4. Describe how some organizations changed their screening process.
    5. Understand and summarize an example of one tissue banks use of a "sepsis algorithm" in screening.
    6. Understand the strengths and weaknesses of using an algorithm and the complementary role of the Medical Director in determining donor eligibility.
    7. Evaluate your own screening methods, determine if there are any weaknesses when screening for sepsis and be able to make suggestions for improvement.

    Michael Bergevin, MD

    Dr. Bergevin is an independent contractor and previously served as the Senior Medical Director for LifeNet Health. He is board certified in Anatomic/Clinical Pathology and Pediatric Pathology and has been in tissue banking for more than 15 years. He is presently serving on the AATB Physician's Council and the Certification Committee . He has served in the past as a member of the Scientific and Technical Affairs Committee (STAC), Planning Committee and Accreditation Committee.

  • AATB Standards Updates: December, 2019

    Includes Credits

    This presentation will review updated to AATB Standards for Tissue Banking and NADO Standards as published in July, 2019.

    This presentation will review updated to AATB Standards for Tissue Banking and NADO Standards as published in July, 2019. 

    Alyssa Harrison, CTBS

    Alyssa Harrison serves as the Director of Tissue Services at LifeShare of Oklahoma. Prior to this she served as the Executive Director of United Tissue Network. She has earned a Bachelor of Science in Biology and a Master of Adult Education from the University of Central Oklahoma as well as a Master of Business Administration from Washington State University. Alyssa has gained extensive knowledge of the American Association of Tissue Banks (AATB), Uniform Anatomical Gift Act and funeral home rules and regulations to ensure United Tissue Network not only meets but exceeds in all standards. Alyssa currently sits as the Chairperson of the Non-Anatomical Donation Organization (NADO) Council for AATB and is very active in the NADO industry including helping improve regulation standards, legislation activities and educational objectives.

    Anna Tirrell, CTBS

    Anna Tirrell, BS CTBS: Vice President - Quality Assurance & Regulatory Affairs. Birth Tissue Recovery, LLC. Winston-Salem, North Carolina

    Anna began her tissue banking career more than ten-years ago processing amniotic membrane allografts.  Since then she has expanded her roles and responsibilities to include successfully guiding 510k medical device clearance, CE mark, and quality system design.  She has extensive experience with FDA and ISO, quality system build-up, and industry knowledge.  She is an AATB-Certified Tissue Bank Specialist and serves the Association as a member of the Standards Committee.  Anna is dedicated to, and passionate about, educating others about the benefits of human tissue donation,

  • Autopsy 101

    Includes Credits

    This presentation will demonstrate and review the basics of a forensic autopsy including; sample collection, dissection, physical findings and more.

    This presentation will demonstrate and review the basics of a forensic autopsy including; sample collection, dissection, physical findings and more. 

    Kim A. Collins, MD, FCAP

    Forensic Pathologist, Fulton County ME, Medical Director

    Dr. Collins, serves as a forensic pathologist with Newberry Pathology Associates and is a Medical Director for SharingHope SC, the Organ and Tissue Donation Services for South Carolina. After receiving her BS in microbiology, magna cum laude Phi Beta Kappa, from the University of Georgia, Athens, Dr. Collins earned her MD from the Medical College of Georgia, Augusta. Following medical school, Dr. Collins completed an anatomic and clinical pathology residency at Wake Forest University/Bowman Gray School of Medicine. After residency, she completed a forensic fellowship at the Medical University of South Carolina where she remained on faculty as a Professor of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, Director of Forensic and Autopsy Pathology, and Chief Medical Examiner. Dr. Collins is a Diplomat of the American Board of Pathology, board certified in anatomic pathology, clinical pathology, and forensic pathology. She is a member of the College of American Pathologists and past Chair of the Autopsy Committee. She is past President of the South Carolina Society of Pathologists, and past Chair for the Pathology/Biology section of the American Academy of Forensic Sciences. She serves on the Board of Directors and is past-President for the National Association of Medical Examiners.

  • Best Practices For Reducing Bioburden On Skin, Cardiac, And Musculoskeletal Cultures

    Includes Credits

    This presentation will highlight past culture rates for Gift of Life Michigan, LifeShare Carolinas, and the Center for Organ Recovery and Education. It will show that there were opportunities for improvement, what those improvements were, and the current statistics of culture rates within these organizations.

    Learning Objectives:

    • Compare MS, HV, and Skin C3 rates with LifeShare Carolinas and the Center for Organ Recovery and Education
    • Differentiate steps in their organization's surgical prep process.
    • Identify potential areas for improvement in the surgical prep process for the Center for Organ Recovery and Education and for LifeShare Carolinas. 

    Tucker Knox, CTP, CTBS

    Tucker Knox joined LifeShare in 2012 as an organ preservationist and tissue recovery technician. In 2017, Tucker was promoted to manager of the department and now leads the preservation and tissue teams. His interest in the human anatomy combined with the positive impact donation can bring inspired him to seek a position in the industry. He has a Bachelor of Science in Health and Exercise Science with a Sports Medicine concentration from Colorado State University. He is a certified transplant preservationist (CTP) and certified tissue banking specialist (CTBS). Out side of work, Tucker enjoys spending time with his wife Cynthia and son TJ, cheering on the Carolina Panthers and halfway finishing DIY projects.

    Cara Krepp, B.S., CTBS

    I graduated from Carlow University in 2014 with a BioChemistry degree- during which time I interned for Dr. Cyril Wecht as an autopsy technician. After graduating I began my journey with the Center for Organ Recovery and Education in January 2015 as a member of the Recovery Coordinator department. Cross trained in tissue recovery, ocular recovery, and organ perfusion.

    Ryan Cormier, BS, CTBS

    Ryan Cormier began his career in tissue recovery as a tissue recovery technician at Kentucky Organ Donor Affiliates in 2012 where he had been in EMS for 2 years when he discovered his passion for organ and tissue donation. He soon moved to Boston where he continued his career in tissue recovery at New England Organ Bank, now New England Donor Services. After four years, Ryan moved his family to Michigan where he was chosen to lead the tissue recovery team at Gift of Life Michigan as their new manager in 2015. Ryan holds a Bachelor’s in Healthcare Administration and has been CTBS certified since 2014. In addition to leading his recovery team to record recovery volumes and sustained low error and contamination outcomes, Ryan is also responsible for the staffing model change that has allowed Gift of Life Michigan to staff appropriately and adequately for the unpredictable nature of tissue donation.

  • Birth Tissue Processing and Clinical Application

    Includes Credits

    This presentation will review a high level summary of various birth tissue processing methods and clinical applications.

    This presentation will review a high level summary of various birth tissue processing methods and clinical applications. 

    Shabnam M. Namin, PhD, MBA, CTBS

    Vice President of Research & Development

    Dr. Namin is the Vice President of Research and Development for UMTB Biomedical, Inc. She is responsible for leading product development of all cell and tissue based products for the company. In addition, Dr. Namin is an important member of the commercialization team. Her main interest is the development of regenerative therapies focused around amniotic derived tissue products. As such, Dr. Namin has played an integral role in developing and commercializing the company’s amniotic tissue offerings.
    Dr. Namin received her bachelors and PhD in Biomedical Engineering from Florida International University.  She also received an MBA and MS in Industrial Engineering from the University of Miami. During her studies, Dr. Namin spent several years working in many different facets in the tissue engineering realm, focusing on the commercialization of cell and tissue based products. She has multiple publications and patents for her work on the development of these therapies. She is currently an active member of the Scientific & Technical Affairs Committee (STAC) for the American Association of Tissue Banks.  

  • Birth Tissue Programs: A to Z

    Includes Credits

    The donation and acquisition of birth tissues present a number of technical hurdles to an OTPO that already recovers cadaveric tissue for transplantation. Birth Tissue A – Z will provide an overview of birth tissue program considerations and challenges. Focusing on the essential building blocks of a successful birth tissue program, we will review aspects of the birth tissue program that differ from traditional cadaveric tissue programs. The role of physicians and hospital staff will be discussed and we will provide insight surrounding the structure and typical challenges that an OTPO can encounter when implementing a birth tissue recovery program.

    Learning Objectives: 

    1. Participants will be able to recognize and understand birth tissue and cadaveric tissue program differences and challenges
    2. Participants will be able to list the components of a successful birth tissue program. 
    3. Participants will be able to identify the key roles and individuals who influence a birth tissue program. 
    4. Meeting participants will learn about at least three technical challenges when setting up birth tissue procurements. 
    5. Meeting participants will know the difference between informed authorization and informed consent. 
    6. Meeting participants will learn what role meconium plays when considering the contamination potential of birth tissue.

    Louis Jares, CTBS, CEBT, D-ABMDI

    Education Director

    Louis Jares is an Education Director with the Musculoskeletal Transplant Foundation (MTF). Having been in the tissue banking industry for over 23 years, he began his work in the field of donation at the Mile High Transplant Bank in Denver in 1996 and has since also worked for Donor Alliance and The Rocky Mountain Lions Eye Bank. Louis has a Bachelor of Science in biology and is also a Certified Tissue Bank Specialist (1998), a Certified Eye Bank Technician (2003), a Registered Diplomate with the American Board of Medicolegal Death Investigators (2006), and an affiliate member of the National Association of Medical Examiners (2009). He has participated in several committees and projects over the years including the AATB Accreditation and Education Committees, the Donor Alliance Mortuary Resource Committee, tissue banking consultation in the Republic of Colombia, Germany, Bulgaria, and the Netherlands. As part of his international work, he has had the honor of presenting at the European Association of Tissue Banks in Brussels, Belgium in 2014. Louis was a co-founder of the MTF Medical Examiner and Coroner Advisory Committee which he helped co-found in 2006 and kept active until the Committee’s dissolution in 2017. He is also a member of the NAME Ad Hoc Organ and Tissue Committee since 2015. His personal interests in research and Forensic Anthropology came together with a recently published journal article entitled Transplanted Allograft Bone in Forensic Anthropology published in the Journal of Forensic Radiology and Imaging in March 2017. He is the current Chairperson of the AATB Education Committee and Elected Vice-Chairperson of the AATB RADE Council. Louis hails from Denver, Colorado but currently resides in South Texas, between San Antonio and Austin.

    Faith Case, BS, CTBS

    Faith Case has served in the tissue bank industry for the past ten years with a primary focus on quality systems. She is the Director of Quality Assurance, Risk & Safety at Regenerative Biologics, Inc. (formerly known as Southeast Tissue Alliance, SETA) a tissue recovery and acquisition agency in Gainesville Florida. Faith has committed her career to continuous improvement, challenging the fundamental quality of people, processes, and products to achieve superior performance outcomes. She advocates creating cultures that promote continuous learning and process improvement. Recognizing and honoring the gift of donation, Faith is committed to maintaining the integrity of donors and raising awareness of the importance and benefit of donation. 

  • Bone Quality Considerations In Structural Allograft Banking

    Includes Credits

    In this session, from an engineer’s perspective, Prof. Willett will define bone quality and how it relates to the mechanical performance of cortical bone allograft. He will discuss the variability in and degradation of bone quality, particularly those independent of clinical bone mineral density measures, resulting from donor characteristics and disease states, processing, sterilization and implantation. Specific attention will be paid to the effects of gamma irradiation sterilization, recent progress in protecting the mechanical performance of cortical bone while still using conventional gamma irradiation sterilization, and opportunities and challenges for bone quality assessment in tissue banking.

    Learning Objectives

    1. Upon completion, participant will be able to define the concept of ‘bone quality’
    2. Upon completion, participant will be able to summarize some key bone quality concepts and how they relate to structural allograft mechanical performance
    3. Upon completion, participant will be able to summarize known and theorized changes in bone quality due to disease, processing, sterilization and upon implantation.
    4. Upon completion, participant will be able to describe how gamma irradiation sterilization degrades bone quality and mechanical performance and the importance of this degradation in the context of structural allografts
    5. Upon completion, participant will be able to summarize and critique recent progress in the development of means to protect the mechanical properties of cortical bone allograft while still using gamma irradiation sterilization
    6. Upon completion, participant will be able to identify opportunities and challenges for bone quality assessment in tissue banking.

    Thomas L. Willett, PhD

    Assistant Professor, Systems Design Engineering - Biomedical Engineering Program

    Thomas Willett is an Assistant Professor in Systems Design Engineering at the University of Waterloo where he directs the Composite Biomaterial Systems Laboratory and contributes to the undergraduate Biomedical Engineering program and a graduate level NSERC CREATE training program in Global Biomedical Technology Research and Innovation. He has been involved in skeletal tissue mechanics research (both soft and hard tissues) for over 15 years, starting with cartilage mechanics (MASc, Queen’s University), then damage mechanisms in tendons (PhD, Dalhousie University) and a broad range of studies in bone quality and mechanics (Mount Sinai Hospital and University of Toronto). He has conducted research in the structural allograft processing area for approximately 8 years. Current research focusses on cortical bone fracture mechanics, the factors affecting cortical bone quality and mechanical properties including processing and sterilization in tissue banking, and the development of 3D printable composite biomaterials for bone reconstruction. He has published 45 peer reviewed journal articles and his laboratory has received major funding from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, the Natural Science and Engineering Research Council of Canada, the Canadian Foundational for Innovation and the Ontario Ministry for Research and Innovation.

  • Brandon's Crossroads: Donor Family Story

    Includes Credits

    Brandon's mom shares his story life and giving the gift of life through organ and tissue donation.

    Join us as Sharon Castellanos shares Brandons story of donation and how it impacted her as a healthcare professional. 

    Sharon Castellanos, DNP, WHNP-BC, CNS, AHN-BC

    Dr. Sharon Castellanos is an expert nurse practitioner in the field of Maternal-Fetal Medicine with a strong internal medicine background. She has spent the last 25 years as a champion in the field of diabetes, developing, implementing and deploying innovative curriculums within Kaiser Permanente Santa Clara and Kaiser San Jose. Her goal is to improve access, value and meaningful care to obstetrical patients. She recently retired from Kaiser and returned to practice within Santa Clara County Valley Medical Center, serving her community as a Maternal Fetal Medicine Nurse Practitioner. She has received many awards for her contributions in nursing clinically and within the community. Her life shifted in 2006 when she became a donor mom. This loss exposed her to the increasing health disparities around tissue and organ donation. To bridge this gap, she founded Brandon’s Crossroads Foundation Inc., a non-profit foundation whose mission is to educate adolescents on tissue and organ donation. She obtained her Doctorate from Northern Consortium of Nursing Practice, in June 2014 and has continued research in this field of tissue and organ donation education. 

  • Clinical Applications and Material Options for Dental Regeneration

    Includes Credits

    This program will review the chemical and physical properties of various regenerative materials to assist clinicians in selecting the best materials to meet the clinical need of the patient. A comprehensive review of the many types of tissue-based products and their clinical applications will be presented in case format to provide a working knowledge of the most optimal bone graft material or membrane for the defect to achieve an aesthetic and predictable outcome for the patient.

    This program will review the chemical and physical properties of various regenerative materials to assist clinicians in selecting the best materials to meet the clinical need of the patient. A comprehensive review of the many types of tissue-based products and their clinical applications will be presented in case format to provide a working knowledge of the most optimal bone graft material or membrane for the defect to achieve an aesthetic and predictable outcome for the patient.

    Justin Lazzara, MIM, MBA, CTBS

    Justin Lazzara is a regenerative marketing professional within the Zimmer Biomet Dental division, where he leads the Regenerative Specialist Sales Team and directs the $65M comprehensive regenerative portfolio for the company. His experience in the medical devise/regeneration business, specifically the dental implant/oral reconstructive therapy arena, exceeds 20 years. Specifically, Justin creates strategies to grow and educate dental surgeons on the safe and effective use of their surgical and grafting solutions. He has proven success in launching innovative bone/tissue-based products in the market. Justin holds two Master’s degrees in business: one for Global Management from Thunderbird School of Business, and the second for Management, Marketing and Finance from the University of Miami. He is a Certified Tissue Bank Specialist.