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A storage facility used to archive biological samples for use in research and experiments. Ranging in size from individual refrigerators to warehouses, biobanks are maintained by institutions such as hospitals, universities, nonprofit organizations, and pharmaceutical companies.

Articles using this Glossary Item


Book Review: Bioinformation

16 October 2017 - by Ryan Ross

Since 2011, Polity Books has published a number of books in its 'Resources Series', which have focused on subjects like diamonds, oil and timber. Yet its forthcoming volume marks something of a shift, for its focus is bioinformation... [Read More]

AstraZeneca to launch its own 'two million genomes' project

25 April 2016 - by Rachel Siden

AstraZeneca has signed deals with the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute and two other institutions to launch one of the largest genome-sequencing efforts yet undertaken... [Read More]

Clinic offers sperm donors free IVF for a friend

14 March 2016 - by Ayala Ochert

An IVF clinic in the UK has announced that it will offer sperm donors the chance to nominate a friend or family member for free IVF treatment.... [Read More]

Video Review: Talking Biopolitics - A Conversation with George Annas and Lisa Ikemoto

12 October 2015 - by Dr Rebecca Dimond

Genomic medicine has advanced rapidly in recent years and, with our increasing capacity to collect and store genetic information, it holds not only great promise but also pitfalls, for individuals and communities. This was the topic under discussion in a live video conversation on 7 October, organised by the Center for Genetics and Society... [Read More]

Squealing on DNA: the law and secondary uses of genetic information

30 March 2015 - by Professor Nils Hoppe

One of the legally and ethically problematic issues regularly debated in the context of biobanks and tissue repositories is that of its potential for forensic use. When Anna Lindh (the Swedish foreign minister) was murdered in 2003, her killer was subsequently identified by way of matching DNA traces found at the crime scene with data contained on the killer's Guthrie card... [Read More]

Back up your stem cells for £40,000

16 September 2013 - by Antony Blackburn-Starza

A Singaporean-based company has become the first company to offer iPS cell banking to the public... [Read More]

Unbroken news: non-invasive prenatal testing

07 May 2013 - by James Brooks

I know what they say about yesterday's news and today's fish and chip paper but what I'm about to tell you is six months old and still a little way off as a headline... [Read More]

Multimillion-dollar grants for stem cell biobank

25 March 2013 - by Dr Shanya Sivakumaran

The California Institute for Regenerative Medicine in San Francisco, USA, has awarded two multimillion-dollar grants to Cellular Dynamics International in Wisconsin and Coriell Institute for Medical Research in New Jersey to generate and bank iPS cell lines.... [Read More]

Drug companies and universities team up to create European stem cell bank

10 December 2012 - by Paola Quattroni

Ten drugs companies and 23 European universities will work to develop a stem cell bank that researchers will use in fundamental disease research and to test potential new medicines... [Read More]

Donor stem cells as safe and effective as patient's own in heart attack trial

12 November 2012 - by Dr Nicola Davis

Stem cells obtained from donors have been used in clinical trials to effectively treat damage caused by heart attacks. The trial found that donor stem cells were 'just as safe' as stem cells derived from the person being treated.... [Read More]

23 and You? Genome research, direct-to-consumer genetics and informed consent

09 July 2012 - by Dr Megan Allyse

When US based, direct-to-consumer genetic testing company 23andMe announced last month that it had obtained a patent on a method for determining predisposition to Parkinson's disease, it highlighted, perhaps inadvertently, a growing area of unresolved tension between clinical, commercial and research interests.... [Read More]

US embryonic stem cell bank to close after only four years

02 July 2012 - by Ruth Retassie

The University of Massachusetts (UMass) Stem Cell Bank, opened in response to restrictions on the funding of human embryonic stem cell (hESC) research in the USA, will close after just four years in existence when it runs out of public funding later this year.... [Read More]

TV Review: HARDtalk - Professor Sir John Sulston

15 May 2012 - by Dr Daniel Grimes

Watching Stephen Sackur interview renowned scientist Sir John Sulston on HARDtalk, it comes as a surprise to discover that Sulston's current interests lie in human population control. This from the scientist whose pioneering work on the basic cell biology of the nematode worm led him to Stockholm in 2002, where he was jointly awarded the Nobel Prize.... [Read More]

British lab working with controversial stem cell doctor

16 April 2012 - by Ana Pallesen

A commercial London laboratory is working with a clinic in Lebanon that uses medical techniques that are not verified by the medical community, and fall outside most countries' legal parameters... [Read More]

UK Biobank, the world's largest biomedical database, opens online

02 April 2012 - by Cait McDonagh

The world's largest database of medical information has opened online, allowing researchers around the world to access its contents. The UK Biobank holds anonymous information from more than 500,000 British people, making it a 'globally unique resource' according to England's chief medical officer, Dame Sally Davies... [Read More]

MPs call for more cord blood donations

06 February 2012 - by Dr Mary Yarwood

The All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Stem Cell Transplantation last week called for more facilities in the UK to increase the collection and banking of valuable cord blood.... [Read More]

Can solidarity inform bioethics? Reflections on a concept and implications for biobanks

05 December 2011 - by Professor Barbara Prainsack and Dr Alena Buyx

What do research biobanks, social media and the NHS have in common?... [Read More]

Film Review: Stem Cell Revolutions - A Vision of the Future

26 September 2011 - by MacKenna Roberts

The short film 'Stem Cell Revolutions: A Vision of the Future' uses interviews to document how stem cells have 'vitally changed our understanding of the human body'. The film opens with a voiceover by the film's celebrity commentator novelist Margaret Atwood: 'Sometimes it seems stem cells are proposed as the answer to everything... What can't they do?'... [Read More]

New stem cell lab to open in Cape Town

19 September 2011 - by Dr Maria Teresa Esposito

A new stem cell lab in Cape Town, South Africa, has renewed the debate over stem cell banking in the country... [Read More]

Event Review: Whose Genome Is It Anyway?

18 October 2010 - by Dr Vivienne Raper

Would you publish your genome? Last week, the 12-member Genomes Unzipped project published their direct-to-consumer genetic test results online. They say they're dispelling fears and encouraging discussion about what genetics means for society. But, in a Royal Institution debate on Thursday, Wellcome Trust Director Sir Mark Walport said openly disclosing their DNA would - like drunken Facebook party pictures - return to haunt them... [Read More]


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