University of Debrecen – Biobank

Head of Biobank: Dr. István Balogh
Telephone: +36 52 340 006

Biospecimens have become a strategic tool for healthcare and medical research, microbial biology as well as in translational research and systems biology through all types of -omics applications. Optimal management of biospecimens and bioresources through biobanking for future research has now become a fundamental requirement. The purpose of the University of Debrecen Biobank (UDB) was to create a centralized resource to collect, process, store and disseminate biological specimens, biomarkers, and health data for investigators of University of Debrecen for use in biomedical research. Besides supporting research at the University of Debrecen UDB serves as a potential tool for international collaborative projects.

University of Debrecen is the most important clinical center in the region, and research activity in the field of rare diseases, metabolic diseases, hematology-hemostasis, cardiology, immunology is well-recognized internationally. Therefore the establishment of a biobank and to join the Biobanking and BioMolecular Resources Research Infrastructure are fundamental goals.

The main pillar of the University of Debrecen’s Biobank is the healthcare provider’s genetic biobank. These are clinical laboratory genetic samples: DNA samples from patients suffering from rare diseases, samples for risk factor analysis, sample for PGx testing, etc.

In addition to the DNA biobank, cell suspensions, plasma, serum, and urine samples for specific scientific projects (eg. Dept. of Chemistry, Dept. of Human Genetics, Dept. of Oncology, Dept. of Obstetrics and Gynecology) are also stored and catalogized.

Altogether, number of samples present in the biobank is app. 85.000.

Scientists involved in the biobanking project are healthcare professionals (clinical geneticists, clinical laboratory geneticists, technicians), research groups in the field of basic science and study groups at different clinical departments.

The Biobank functions under standard operating procedures (SOPs), quality assurance and quality control measures for sample collection and maintenance, and a common database to track consent, samples and manage requests to dispense biological samples and data. We adhere to all state and local regulations regarding the use of samples for human subject research. There are several quality measures implemented: samples are tested in-house genetic testing (from SNP to WGS) and by external QC (RfB). Storage of the samples performed according to the consent.