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Belgium (Member)



BCP (BBMRI.BE): The scientific participation of Belgium in BBMRI-ERIC is exerted by a national node (BBCP) which should closely collaborate with the central executive management office, and involves the three Belgian network biobank initiatives i.e. Belgian Virtual Tumourbank project assigned to the Belgian Cancer Registry (BVT-BCR; Federal Initiative), Biothèque de la Fédération Wallonie-Bruxelles (BWB; Walloon Initiative) and Centre for Medical Innovation (CMI; Flemish Initiative) and involves sixteen public institutions i.e. University Hospital of Ghent, University of Ghent, University Hospital of Antwerp, University of Antwerp, St-Luc University Hospital, University Hospital Brussels, Vrije Universiteit Brussel, Universitair Ziekenhuis Leuven, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, University Hospital of Liège, University Hospital of Mont-Godinne, St-Pierre University Hospital, Erasme Hospital, Brugmann University Hospital, Jules Bordet Institute and University of Hasselt.

The main goals are:

  • To further contribute to the development of the Belgian national node and representation of the national node in the BBMRI-ERIC management committee according to the statutes and business plan of BBMRI-ERIC, on rotation (2 to 3 years) and in consensus with the regional network biobank initiatives. The Belgian Node strategic core decision making structure BBMRI.BE has been developed under the name “Belgian Biobank Consensus Platform” (BBCP);
  • Optimal harmonization of procedures within BBCP to integrate the three network biobank initiatives existing in Belgium i.e. BVT-BCR (Federal Initiative), BWB (Walloon Initiative) and CMI (Flemish Initiative), and to further integrate additional Belgian biobanks that are currently not part of these initiatives, into a national research infrastructure. The Belgian Biobank Harmonization Board has been recently created with this purpose;
  • Optimal harmonization of BBCP procedures with BBMRI-ERIC by means of three workgroups
    i) Minimal dataset and information technologies workgroup,
    ii) Quality and procedures workgroup and
    iii) Ethical, legal and governance workgroup;
  • Fulfill the needs of the scientific community: optimal biospecimen harmonization, fluent access to qualitative samples and link to patient data;
  • Further development of the Belgian strengths in health care integrated biobanking to become a leading and liaison partner for and between academic and industrial research.

Annelies Debucquoy


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