The Minister of Education, Vladimír Balaš, and the Director for European Research Area and Innovation, Anna Panagopoulou, identified the project as a prime example of a functioning research infrastructure that uses synergistic effects.
“I cite Brno as a prime example of a place where cooperation between the university, its research infrastructure and the industrial sector is working well, a process that is attracting young people”, said Ms. Panagopoulou. According to Ms. Panagopoulou, this model fulfils the goals of the European Commission in relation to financial support from EU funds.
“However, none of this would be possible if we were not part of a democratic and free Europe, and our children and the rest of society must be reminded of this every day”, emphasised Masaryk University’s Rector, Martin Bareš.
Jana Klánová, Director of the RECETOX at Masaryk University’s Faculty of Science, also thanked the residents of Brno and its surrounding regions. “For over 30 years, we have had a great response from local citizens who have been willing to engage in population studies and collaborate with our scientists. We want to strengthen this cooperation, and that is also why we have built the biobank”, said Ms. Klánová.
Infrastructure primarily handles biological material collected in the CELSPAC population studies. In combination with the survey data, these samples contain invaluable information, offering local as well as international researchers vast amounts of information.
Biobank has been built underground between the RECETOX and INBIT pavilions in the northern part of the campus. It was completed in 2020. The facility uses a laboratory information system that was developed in cooperation with the Czech national hub of the European Biobank Infrastructure Network (BBMRI). The project was funded by the European Operational Program Development - Research and Education.
Biobank was constructed in part to house data generated by the ELSPAC long-term study of pregnancy and childhood, in which researchers followed thousands of children born in Brno and Znojmo in 1991. This population study generated data on the health of the children, as well as socio-economic data on the situation of the families and other important factors.