Interview conducted by Catherine Seiler, PhD
The ISBER Best Practices, 4th Edition was released in January 2018. Building on the first three editions, the 4th edition facilitates biobankers in their day-to-day operations From Collection to Discovery. As of July 9th over 1,200 biobank managers, technicians, pathologists, scientists and policy makers have downloaded the 4th Edition. We were particularly excited about the 1000th download, so we reached out to this person to ask them a few questions and celebrate this milestone.
Congratulations to the Best Practices 1000th downloader: Marei-Theresa Schleyer!
Biologist, Master of Science in Immunology (December 2015)
Immunological, Rheumatological Biobank (IRB)
Department of Rheumatology and Clinical Immunology
University Medical Center Freiburg
Tell me a bit about yourself, where you work, and what you do?
My name is Marei-Theresa Schleyer, I am an Immunologist and in July 2016, I became the biobank manager of the newly established rheumatologic, immunologic biobank at the Medical Center of Freiburg, Germany. Since then my daily work consists of the administration of the database, preparation and storage of biomaterial, coordination of clinical studies (ethics application, inclusion of patients, recruitment and information of healthy donors etc.), financial engineering and generation of SOP‘s according to European standards. In addition, I participate in internal scientific projects and supervise students.
We are collecting and storing biomaterials and data from patients with autoimmunity, immune dysfunction and rheumatological conditions, such as vasculitides (EGPA, GPA, MPA), connective tissue diseases (SLE, Sjögren´s Syndrome, APS) and rheumatoid arthritis. To date, we have consented more than 2100 patients as well as a number of immune competent donors. Although we are a comparatively small biorepository funded by third party funds, we are dedicated to offering a high quality biobank service.
How did you hear about ISBER and the Best Practices?
I heard about ISBER for the first time at the Global Biobank Week in Stockholm in September 2017. I was immediately excited about the incredible work you are doing and the whole community. But since we are a newly established Biobank and sampling started only in spring 2017, it took 6 more months before I found the time to take a closer look at your guidelines.
How do you plan on using the Best Practices in your repository?
Luckily, from the beginning on we focused on good clinical practices, good laboratory practices and the WHO guideline to provide the best biomaterial and data quality possible. Major parts of the ISBER’s Best Practices are already integrated into our daily work. Those who are lacking or only partially available we will try to integrate during the next months. In this way, we hope to guarantee the best quality and thereby find new collaboration partners who are interested in immune-related diseases. Ideally, this will allow us one day to finance our work and to be independent from third party funding.
Congratulations again Theresa!
Please visit the ISBER Best Practices page often as we release translations of the Best Practices, webinars, and updated Best Practices-related tools.
Interested in joining ISBER? See our membership options here.