Hannover Unified Biobank (HUB), Fraunhofer Institute for Toxicology and Experimental Medicine (ITEM)

PRAGMATIC – HOLISTIC- SOLUTION ORIENTED – A comprehensive system architecture for Hannover Unified Biobank and Fraunhofer ITEM. This instalation confirms our approach nicely: With CentraXX providing a modular system architecture, we were able to win Hannover Unified Biobank as a new client. The Institute of Hannover Medical School needed a system architecture with which it could manage and store all biomaterial from Hannover Medical School across all institutes and make it available for study purposes. Complex processes with numerous participants must be converted into a clear, understandable and optimally usable management system. The Institute chose KAIROS, and with it CentraXX, as partners for this project.

The Hannover Unified Biobank (HUB) is responsible for setting up a central and harmonized biobank for all areas of the Hannover Medical School (MHH). Its tasks include the collection, storage and administration of all samples such as tissue, cell lines, microorganisms and body fluids. The samples themselves are used for various purposes in clinical research.

The HUB was looking for a competent partner to set up a biobank management system that would cover all institutes and tasks. This partner would create the basis in the form of an efficient, comprehensive database system and establish central services for the MHH. In addition, the HUB was faced with the challenge of integrating the existing biobanks into a common, new system and thus creating an overarching technical basis for all participants and their specific needs. This is an approach which, in addition to sample storage and biobank relevant administration, also includes the operation of processes. According to the requirements of the HUB, these should include – in addition to a consistent procedure for subject consent – the connection and control of various other processes, for example in the case of multi-center studies or the connection of laboratory equipment to an automatic sample store or pipetting machines.

A case for KAIROS: In the context of a Europe-wide tender by the HUB together with the Fraunhofer Institute, its CentraXX database system convinced the IT experts and scientists at the HUB on the one hand because of its profound theoretical understanding of the requirements, and on the other hand because of the pragmatic approach with which the system is used in day-to-day business. Fast, user-specific reports on the processes themselves are just as much a part of the basic applications as the creation of account statements and a self-service portal for the partners of other university departments. In particular, Kairos is proving to be the provider whose solution links patient data and biobank data while strictly maintaining the data protection function, for example through an anonymous view.

With successive extension options for later requirements, KAIROS is also proving to be an ideal partner for long-term cooperation, as CentraXX will also be able to cover topics such as study management or comprehensive research portals in the future: Based on modern web technology and thus a future-proof technical development concept, further interfaces and processes can be automated and additional devices and systems can be connected. Against the background of increasing cooperation between different research institutes, this option is becoming more and more important: Various members of the North German Biobank Alliance, in addition to the HUB the universities of Greifswald, Kiel and Lübeck, are now using CentraXX throughout and can thus expand their cooperation in the future by accessing a common, broader database and the same processes. The same applies to the National Cohort, a network of various German research companies: CentraXX is also in use there.

Another advantage is the possibility of building a bridge to the Fraunhofer Institute for Toxicology and Experimental Medicine (ITEM). The MHH and parts of the ITEM will thus be able to use the system independently as well as with each other, and will be able to create much better synergies with regard to their infrastructures in joint projects.

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