A biobank is a large organized collection of samples, usually taken from humans, intended for use in research activities. Storage and cataloging of samples in biobanks is carried out according to genetic, clinical and other characteristics, such as age, gender, blood type and nationality. Some samples are also categorized based on environmental factors, for example, depending on whether the donor has been exposed to a particular substance that could affect their health. Biobanks are important for biomedical research, including in the field of genomics and personalized medicine. Researchers can use the biobank if they need samples with similar characteristics for the study.
Depending on the type of stored biomaterial and the purposes of its further use, several main types of biobanks can be distinguished: research, clinical, population and mixed.
The requirements for the operation of all biobanks are the same:
- strict observance of ethical requirements and responsible attitude to the personal data of patients and donors;
- standardization of procedures for processing, transportation and storage of biomaterial;
- collection and safekeeping of information associated with biosamples.