As the dawn sets for 2021, our CoE team of staff has already started gearing up for engaging in new exciting endeavors that are encompassing more public campaigns and research projects, taking advantage of all the novelties, including the information technology systems that have acquired and put into use, as well as the storage infrastructure, and quality standardization procedures, that have been harnessed during the first year.
Among our first activities is the arranging of a set of visits in Limassol in January, where our Biobank team will be meeting with former patients of COVID-19, health professionals and the wider public in order to take biological samples that will help establish the levels of corona virus antibodies in their organisms and thus set an epidemiological image of the current situation on the island. Tens of people have already participated and have taken these tests, which are offered free of charge. As we aspire to become a local and regional Center of Excellence in Biobanking and Biomedical Research, we approach these visits with great excitement and sense of duty!
We are hoping to follow them up in the near future to the rest of Cyprus, in both urban and rural areas, in order to achieve an island-wide reach and serve the expectations of the wider public. Meanwhile, Professor Deltas and the CoE team are planning to meet the new demands of the continuously expanding team of staff and volume of research and Biobanking to hire a new building, where some of the activities of Biobank.cy could be transferred. For those who are involved in real estate, please read the 2020 review section and especially the new story regarding our expression of interest, and give us a tip for a potential building that could shelter some of our activities.
2021 is also an important year for raising awareness about the Biobank and why biobanking is important for Cypriot society. Since the concept of biobanking in general, and of any new concept in science specifically, is relatively unknown to the average Cypriot, the Biobank.cy team came up with an idea of proceeding with the production of a new, uncommon for Cypriot standards, animation video, that will help our fellow citizens to understand what biobanking is all about. Even more important for us is to mobilize the wider public on an island-wide level to start visiting our premises for sample donations. Stay tuned for more interesting news coming your way in the next BBMRIC-ERIC newsletter! We wish you a prosperous and health 2021, stay safe, stay healthy!