The unit develops and implements infrastructure – based on the CRIP Privacy-Regime and approved by German data protection authorities – for networked biomedical research consortia.

By integrating biobanks into so-called metabiobanks, the unit enables the web-based case-by-case and sample-by-sample search for human biospecimens and associated data for networked research across institutional and national borders. Thus, human specimens (such as blood, serum, tissue) accruing with diagnostic or therapeutic procedures are swiftly made available for research securing statistical rigor.

Collaborating with more than a dozen university hospitals and biobank partners, the unit has acquired outstanding expertise regarding

  • the semantic integration of case and sample-related information data from medical research and healthcare,
  • the contractual design of the data transfer with regard to pertinent ethical and legal regulations, and
  • the governance of cross-institutional biobank networks.

The data transfer from the hospitals has been approved in terms of data protection regulations. CRIP has been internationally evaluated with success.

p-BioSPRE: Biobank Portal of the p-Medicine Consortium

In the scope of the “p-Medicine” project supported by the EU, the Metabiobanks CRIP unit built up the p-BioSPRE platform together with the Fraunhofer IBMT between 2011 and 2015. It initially grants authorised researchers access to highly annotated biobanks in the field of the most frequent form of childhood leukaemia, acute lymphoblastic leukaemia (ALL) and the Wilms tumour (nephroblastoma), including information about the associated patient declaration of informed consent. p-BioSPRE can be flexibly expanded at any time by additional tumour entities and additional biobank partners.

Demonstrator with test data for numerous tumour entities:

P2B2: Project Portal of the German Biobank Register

The project portal in the German Biobanks Register (P2B2) permits a cross-functional biobank search for specific samples or cases in various biobanks. Built up in 2010 – 2012 within the scope of the P2B2 project supported by the BMBF, P2B2 provides the “proof-of-concept” that can be built up as a project portal for all types of medical biobanks according to the CRIP concept that was originally developed for the tissue bank of pathology. P2B2 is accessible with a single sign-on together with the German Biobank Register.

CRIP: Central Research Infrastructure for Molecular Pathology

CRIP (online since 2006) is the prototype for all additional Metabiobanks of the work group. Developed in collaboration with the CRIP Advisory Committee and the foundation partners, the CRIP Privacy Regime became the trailblazing concept and has been approved in Germany as conform with the Data Privacy Law since 2006. Starting with the software originally developed for CRIP, the modular software portfolio "CRIP Toolbox" was developed in the course of the year for the flexible and customised structuring of biobank portals.

  • Weiler G, Schröder C, Schera F, Dobkowicz M, Kiefer S, Heidtke K R, Hänold S, Nwankwo I, Forgo N, Stanulla M, Eckert C, Graf N. p-BioSPRE – an information and communication technology framework for transnational biomaterial sharing and access. ecancer medical science 2014(8).
  • Gros O. Computergestützte Wissensextraktion aus Befundtexten der Pathologie. Dissertation Mathemat-naturw. Fakultät der Universität Potsdam, 2013.
  • Schröder C, Heidtke K R, Zacherl N, Zatloukal K, Taupitz J. Safeguarding donors' personal rights and biobank autonomy in biobank networks: the CRIP privacy regime. Cell Tissue Bank 12(3): 233 – 240; doi: 10.1007/s10561-010-9190-8. Epub 2010 Jul 15.