Boris Calmels, PharmD, PhD, from the Institut Paoli Calmettes, Marseille, France, describes the biobank project, a project designed to improve complications from hematopoietic stem cell (HSC) transplantation. 33 of the HSC transplant centers and 23 biological research centers in France came together 5 years ago, in a project funded by the French government and a number of patient associations. Dr Calmels explains that a large biobank has been built up, focusing on the complications of HSC transplantation. The biobank contains 150000 samples from 5000 patients and over 2000 related donors. In the next few years, the aim is to expand the collection to include unrelated donors, however Dr Calmels points out the challenges of this as it requires collaboration with the national registry of HSC donors and it is also important to preserve donor anonymity. According to Dr Calmels, this is a very exciting project, because it allows clinical data to be combined with biological data. Initially, the biobank was dedicated to graft versus host disease (GVHD), but has now been opened to all complications of stem cell transplantation. He summarizes that the goal of the project is to promote research on HSC transplantation using this fantastic resource.
Recorded at the 2017 annual meeting of the European Society for Blood and Marrow Transplantation (EBMT) in Marseille, France.