Qatar Biobank marks region 1st non-European entity to join BBMRI-ERIC

By Arya M Nair, Official Reporter
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Qatar Biobank joins BBMRI-ERIC
Image Courtesy; Qatar Foundation

Qatar Biobank, a member of Qatar Foundation, has joined Biobanking and BioMolecular resources Research Infrastructure – European Research Infrastructure Consortium (BBMRI-ERIC), as an Observer through its Assembly of Members approval and Qatar’s official confirmation, provided by its representatives, Minister of Public Health and Qatar Biobank.

It is a great privilege for both Qatar and BBMRI-ERIC, where Qatar Biobank represents Qatar as the first non-European, Middle Eastern, Observer of BBMRI-ERIC in the debates of the Assembly of Members and participates in certain activities identified by the Assembly Members.

At the same time, BBMRI-ERIC will benefit from fostering an international exchange of knowledge and human biosamples collected and stored in Qatar Biobank, enabling the global research society to deal with potential future global health threats for a better healthier future.

Qatar Biobank will have access to facilities and field experts, through BBMRI-ERIC, to strengthen its medical research capabilities and support reaching its goal of precision medicine development.

Qatar Biobank joins BBMRI-ERIC
Dr. Nahla Afifi
Qatar Biobank

“We have been working hand in hand with the BBMRI-ERIC for years now, collaborating on many projects, exchanging knowledge between our local researchers and field experts and theirs to reinforce Qatar’s position in the biobanking field globally as one of the leaders, and joining the consortium is an assurance that our work in Qatar Biobank with our local stakeholders is well recognized from our international stakeholders and that Qatar’s efforts in the biobank and medical research fields are valuable for the world’s health future.”

Dr. Asma Al Thani, vice-chairperson of Qatar Biobank Board said that “I am so proud to witness Qatar’s name present among leading countries in the medical research and biobanking fields through our work and efforts at Qatar Biobank, under the great leadership of Qatar Foundation and the Ministry of Public Health. This is the first time an Arab Middle Eastern country and a non-European country joins BBMRI-ERIC as an observer or a participant, which reflects Qatar’s position in these fields and how far we’ve reached with our work.”

Qatar Biobank was founded in collaboration with Hamad Medical Corporation and the Ministry of Public Health to collect and store biological samples and information on health and lifestyle from large numbers of members of the population of Qatar, Qataris and residents of Qatar for 15 years or more who are at least 18 years old, in order to facilitate the medical research for local scientists to achieve a better healthier future for the community.

Qatar Biobank represents Qatar in the biobanking and medical research communities as one of the leading biobanks in the field globally, which positions Qatar as a hub for research and a valuable source in the field.

BBMRI-ERIC is one of the largest European research infrastructures for biobanking that brings together all the main players from the biobanking field, researchers, biobankers, industry and patients, to boost biomedical research and make new treatments possible.

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