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Content archived on 2024-05-29

Harmonising population-based biobanks and cohort studies to strengthen the foundation of European biomedical science in the post-genome era


This coordination action aims to establish a collaborative research network that will identify and explore key issues that will help to ensure that Europe makes best use of its rich array of population-based biobanks and longitudinal cohort studies. These include major cohorts that already exist and exciting new initiatives that are just starting up. The ultimate aim is to harmonise those features that are common to many such studies and that, when harmonised, will help to: (1) promote communication between major biobanking initiatives; (2) enhance the effective sharing and synthesis of information and data; and (3) avoid the expensive mistakes and inefficiencies that can arise when individual initiatives repeatedly "re-invent the wheel". Because of its large and varied population-base, the population-centred nature of many of its health systems, and its past emphasis on the importance of population-based cohort studies, Europe is well placed to capitalise on the biomedical research opportunities that exist in the post-genome era. If we can ensure that our biobanks are able to work together to address pivotal research questions that fall outside the scope of projects funded by single nations, or even of large cohorts running across several nations, we can ensure that Europe remains at the cutting-edge of biomedical research internationally. Our long-term aim to harmonise large population-based biobanks and cohort studies in this manner is unashamedly ambitious. But it can undoubtedly be realised if it is approached in manageable stages. Given the pre-existing thought that has already been put into such harmonisation under initiatives such as the EU funded COGENE project and the Public Population Project in Genomics (P3G) with Canada, and under EU funded projects such as GenomEUtwin, this proposal for a Coordination Action represents the next logical step towards our ultimate aim and allows Europe to be well prepared for any research opportunities...

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Geitmyrsveien 75
4404 Nydalen OSLO

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Participants (17)