Biobanks are made up of collections of human samples (biospecimens) such as DNA, blood, tissue and tumour cells, which are held for use in health and medical research. These samples are linked to relevant personal and health information such as health records, family history, lifestyle and genetic information. Written consent is obtained from a person who donates their tissue and the sample is carefully preserved and protected in the biobank.
The samples held in biobanks help researchers to improve their understanding of human health and disease. They can assist researchers in discovering why some people develop particular diseases and others do not. Biobanks help researchers improve the way disease is detected, diagnosed and treated. They help researchers to understand the risk factors that underlie complex diseases and speed up the time it takes to translate these discoveries into real improvements in patient care and improved health outcomes.
Biobanks are complicated, and BDHP has brought together experts from across the partnership to form a working group. BDHP in collaboration with the Queensland Department of Health established the biobanking working group. A Governance Framework for biobanking across BDHP was developed, which outlines principles and guidelines for biobanking.
BDHP Biobanking Principles
- Provide a valuable resource for researchers to advance our understanding of human health and disease.
- Harness synergies between partner organisations to provide a well governed, accountable and efficient capacity.
- Maximise researcher access to biological samples and associated data in line with the intent of participants donation.
- Maximise collaborations between researchers, partner organisations, other research organisations and key stakeholders.
- Optimise return on investment by ensuring quality of sample collection and curation to maximise utility of samples and support effective research and translation.
Biobanks across BDHP partners