BBMRI-ERIC

The pan-European Biobanking and BioMolecular resources Research Infrastructure – European Research Infrastructure Consortium (BBMRI-ERIC) improves the accessibility and interoperability of the existing comprehensive population-based or clinical collections of biological samples from different (sub)populations of Europe. These collections include the attached data on factors such as health status, nutrition, lifestyle, and environmental exposure of the study subjects. Combined with the expertise of the clinicians, pathologists, bio-informaticians, and molecular biologists involved, a globally unmatched, Europe-wide platform for translational medical research is envisaged with the aim to develop personalised medicine and disease prevention for the benefit of European citizens.

To reach this goal, biotech and pharmaceutical industry must also have a way to collaborate with academic researchers to fully realize the enormous potential of European biobanking. In addition to clinical, ethical, and legal experts, patient communities are involved to achieve standards and guidelines that properly balance individual values, such as protection of privacy and informed consent, with shared values of facilitated access to advance health care and disease prevention.

On 3 December 2013, BBMRI was officially awarded the Community legal framework for a European Research Infrastructure Consortium (ERIC). This specific legal form is designed to facilitate the joint establishment and operation of research infrastructures of European interest. The ERIC status allows biobanks and biomolecular resources to be combined in one pan-European facility and provides access to collections of partner biobanks and biomolecular resources, their expertise, and services on a non-economic basis.

BBMRI-ERIC is set up as a distributed research infrastructure in most, if not all, European Member States. BBMRI-ERIC consists of 18 Member States, 5 Observer States, and one International Organisation, making it one of the largest research infrastructures supporting health research in Europe.

Role of institution in the project

BBMRI-ERIC is mainly involved in WP4 and WP5 with implementing finding/cataloguing services, integration of imaging services to the dashboard and provide existing tooling for clinical data quality and WSI data/metadata quality and clinical data harmonization and pipelines for processing WSI conversions to open formats. Further contributions are in WP2, 7 and 8 with BBMRI-ERIC’s biobanks related domain knowledge.

Dr. Petr Holub

Dr. Petr Holub is Associate Professor of computer science at Masaryk University. Since 2015, he has become Senior IT and Data Protection Manager with BBMRI-ERIC, European Research Infrastructure Consortium for Biobanking and BioMolecular Resources. He is also Chief Information Technology Officer for BBMRI-ERIC Common Service IT. He has background both in sciences and computer sciences. He was head of the Department of Communication Technologies at Institute of Computers Science, Masaryk University, as well as architect of advanced multimedia and collaborative systems of the Czech national e-infrastructure at CESNET. His research in computer networks and multimedia processing has led to more than 50 research papers in established computer science, bioinformatics and medical informatics journals and ranked conferences. He has received Best Open-Source Software Award by ACM Multimedia SIG. He is a co-founder of Comprimato company, which commercializes research results in acceleration of compression algorithms.

Kurt Macjen

Kurt Majcen graduated with a degree in Information Technology from the Graz University of Technology. In 1995 he joined JOANNEUM RESEARCH for database and software development. He built up valuable experience with European projects in the cultural heritage area and for the Centre of Earth Observation in Ispra. After coordinating the healthcare project NDSNET and renewal of the company’s extensive website he led the CLINICIP project team (Closed Loop Insulin Infusion for Critically Ill Patients). Kurt ran and coordinated a series of Ambient Assisted Living projects like, Learn4Generations, a study on the potential of AAL solutions for home care and RegionAAL – the Styrian AAL test region (large field test in 100+ households for longer than a year), when setting up a working group on assisting technologies for older adults. He is further interested in information management (e.g. introducing new document management and knowledge exchange systems). Kurt conducted various studies (feasibility study for a Digital Mediathek, pilot study about converging technologies for internet, TV and mobile devices). Establishing a technical system and maintaining ISO-14155 compliant procedures for data management within clinical studies were also within his responsibilities. Kurt joined BBMRI-ERIC as project manager and IT-Scientist in 2021.

Heimo Müller

Heimo Müller, PhD studied Mathematics in Graz and Vienna, concluding with a thesis on data space semantics. He worked on data visualisation at Joanneum Research and participated as national expert in ISO/IEC JTC1 SC24 and SC29 and was document editor in SC24/WG7. He developed an interactive data exploration system for clinical data (GenView) and was within the FET flagship project IT Future of Medicine (ITFoM) responsible for ICT aspects of the medical platform. He participated in several EC funded projects and is currently involved in EOSC-Life (European Science Cloud for Life Science), EJP-RD (European Joint Programming on Rare Diseases) and IMI Conception (Medication Safety in Pregnancy). Heimo Müller is the PI of the BIBBOX, an open source platform for data sharing used in the H2020 projects HEAP and CY-Biobank.

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