biobank.cy Center of Excellence in Biobanking and Biomedical Research
With funding from the European Commission, the Republic of Cyprus, and the University of Cyprus, the dream to establish the first biobank in the country has become a reality, thus creating new prospects for next-generation medical research.
See the CY-Biobank project, Grant Agreement Number 857122, for more information.
Cyprus started as an Observer at BBMRI-ERIC in 2016 and became a full member in 2022, with the ambition to constitute a significant node, contribute to European biobanking, and benefit from their participation in the largest family of biobanks in Europe. Research in Cyprus has a relatively short history, but substantial progress has been made in various fields of human molecular and medical genetics. Nevertheless, much more needs to be done to satisfy the increasing needs.
The main goals are to:
- Set the stage and prepare the legal statuses for creating the Cyprus National Node, BBMRI.cy.
- Establish a strong biobank with optimal operational conditions harmonised with BBMRI-ERIC standards and norms, ensuring full transparency
- Integrate into the medical community and the public sphere, demonstrating respect for ethical, legal, and social implications, in order to facilitate patient and healthy donor enrolment for present and future research on monogenic and complex disorders
- Enhance the biobank’s capacities in order to support research in many more areas and on diseases that remain neglected, while taking advantage of unique genetic phenomena present in the Cypriot gene pool
- Reach a level of maturity that will lead to wider visibility and exploitation of the biobanked material by local and foreign researchers
- Complete the Cyprus human genome project by creating a Cypriot reference genome, which will serve as a baseline for other medical projects applied to separate disease entities
- Develop educational activities to train current and future generations of researchers in the fields of population genetics, molecular epidemiology, and bioinformatics
CING – Cyprus
The scientific participation of CING is fully supported by the Ministry of Health of Cyprus. CING established its own Biobank in 2012 both to support its research/ academic activities and to maintain the delivery of a high standard of its specialsed services to patients.
The main goals are to:
- Develop, streamline and harmonise biobanking activities in Cyprus in line with BBMRI-ERIC
- Serve as a strong link with BBMRI-ERIC and strengthen and consolidate CING biobanking activities with other Cypriot national stakeholders
- Facilitate the execution and operation of population programs and promote optimal clinical biobanking activities
- Integrate the biobank activities at CING and other National Collaborating Stakeholders into the BBMRI-ERIC framework
- Provide ethical and legal services to the national biobank stakeholders
- Promote public awareness of the importance of biobanking in biomedical research, towards personalised medicine and better understanding of etiology
- Provide a voice to patients and advocacy associations