Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS


DANUBIOBANK — Result In Brief

Project ID: 18822
Country: Germany

New technologies boost healthcare integration

An ageing disorders - focused initiative set up a regional biobank to boost research and related developments. Far-reaching collaborations brought together academia and industry and built on the strength of IT-based communications.
New technologies boost healthcare integration
With the group of over-65-year-olds growing fast, ageing disorders present a major challenge for Europe's public healthcare systems. One way of easing the pressure is through the identification of relevant novel disease genes and use of new technologies to control risk factors. To achieve this, studies require access to well-classified and ample-sized patient cohorts as well as quality-controlled central banks for study samples. To this end, development of an information technology (IT)-based infrastructure will provide relevant studies with the samples and data they need.

The EU-funded project 'The Danubian Biobank initiative - towards information-based medicine' (Danubiobank) worked to set up a 'Danubian Biobank foundation for public utility in molecular medicine of aging disorders'. The vision was to establish a network of organisations located along the Danube river and neighbouring regions including universities, associated teaching hospitals, primary prevention programmes and endpoint-related rehabilitation clinics.

The consortium's mission was to set the stage for healthcare-integrated biobanking of local and regional healthcare systems through e-health portal structures, IT-based strategies and novel technologies relevant to vascular and metabolic ageing disorders.

In cooperation with IT companies, European projects and the 'Public population project in genomics' (P3G), project partners outlined the common IT architecture of the network with web-based communication taking the form of an interactive project-driven website within a public access e-health portal. The website included an encryptable web-based patient health record study support system (SSS) and the Danubiobank expertise platform (see online).

A partner of the P3G international biobanking activities, the Biobanking and Biomolecular Resources Research Infrastructure (BBMRI) European biobanking activities and the Telematics Platform for Medical Research Network (TMF) German local biobanking activities, the project contributed to elaboration of data entry documents and guidelines for establishing biobank structures as well as the safe handling of samples and records held therein.

The Danubiobank consortium collaborated with key parties for development of a liquid nitrogen-based roboted biobanking unit for integrated health care biobanks. Multiple activities were also developed for the implementation of novel technologies and standard operating procedures (SOPs) for applications. These included the co-founding of the European lipidomics initiative, 'Lipid droplets as dynamic organelles of fat deposition and release: translational research towards human disease' (Lipidomicnet). The consortium also worked with Sixth Framework Programme (FP6) projects 'European Special Populations Research Network' (Eurospan) and 'Identification of genetic roots of coronary artery disease by combining stepwise genome wide association studies with transcriptomic and functional genomic investigation of relevant genetic variants' (Cardiogenics). It also played a role in the establishment of a highly competitive FP7 application on healthcare integrated biobanking (Hibconsortium).

Project efforts advanced an innovative research strategy for ageing disorders and highlighted the field of biobanking for better networking and formation of strategic alliances.

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