Biobanking is a complex but fascinating world. It has direct impact on our daily life as it provides researchers with the precious material that they need to find new healthcare solutions. IBBL’s communication department has use of multi-support resources to make this unknown science more approachable to the general public and to increase its visibility among stakeholders. In the persons of project managers, IBBL routinely interacts with clinicians and researchers to facilitate the communication and ensure that a research project or a bioservice runs smoothly.
Educating the scientists of tomorrow
The Researchers’ Days is one of the large-scale outreach event that brings together scientists and the general public in Luxembourg. For the 4th time in a row, IBBL’s researchers proactively registered and shared their passion for biomedical science with young and old. Participants got their hands dirty as they embarked on an interactive journey through the human digestive system and unraveled the millions of organisms that inhabit our gut. The most curious minds were invited to further discover the biobanking environment by taking a tour throughout IBBL’s storage facilities and laboratories. And so, in 2016, IBBL opened its doors to students from the Lycée Michel Rodange and Lycée Robert Schuman.
Celebrating the value of patients
Even though IBBL can in no case get in touch with the donors, patients are at the core of our activities. First, we committed to personalised medicine, a medical approach that is centered on the patient and customises healthcare to an individual’s needs. Second, IBBL collects, processes, stores and redistributes the biological samples and their associated data voluntarily donated by patients to advance biomedical science. Their role is of utmost importance and, even though IBBL is never given any identifying information about the donors, our staff is always enthoustiastic to show solidarity and express gratitude with patients at events, such as the Relay for Life or the NCER Summer Party.
« To continue our mission of providing high-quality biological samples to advance medical research, we need the support of voluntary donors. The least we can do in exchange is to keep them updated about the scientific progress achieved with their help. »
Head of Marketing & Communication
Our research in biospecimen science and our expertise in biospecimen handling have increased our visibility worldwide. IBBL is one of the few biobanks that offer biospecimen services but that also carry out its own research. The outcomes of our studies are shared with the scientific community via peer-review journals and via poster presentations at conferences such as the ISBER annual meeting. Furthermore, in 2016, several IBBL’s experts were honoured to be invited as speakers and share their expertise at international events organised by reknown bodies, including the European College Society of Veterinary Clinical Pathology, the US National Institutes of Health and the US National Cancer Institute.
Despite our growing notoriety within the worldwide biobanking community, there is still much to be done to raise awareness among the general public. We will continue our efforts in getting involved with the population at all levels to communicate the value of a biobank and drive engagement. With regard to our partners and clients, we will keep on listening and responding to their needs by modernising our services, and we are already looking forward to coordinating the first international biospecimen symposium in partnership with the International Society for Biological and Environmental Repositories.