Russia’s First Commercial Research Biobank, National BioService, Opened a New Laboratory at the Skolkovo Technopark in Moscow
Contributed by Zisis Kozlakidis, PhD, ISBER President 2017-2018
Two nationwide initiatives were announced during the “Opening of the NBS and of ROSBIO” workshop in Moscow, Russia on the 23rd of November 2017. The first is a recent creation of the Russian Biobanking Society (ROSBIO). The main goal of the Society is to integrate the efforts of Russian biobanks and to promote best practices of biobanking based on international standards and the ISBER Best Practices. The second announcement was for the creation of a large resource of digitalized histological and cytological images accompanied by detailed and standardized clinical and histopathological information. This resource will allow the National BioService (NBS) and its partners, Foundation for the development of digital medicine “The Internet Development Institute” and Independent Non-commercial Organization “The Third Opinion”, to develop tools for training histopathologists and to develop methods of computerized analysis and classification of morphological data.
As the first in Russia institutional member of ISBER, NBS supports and develops biobanking network in Russia, in line with ISBER’s recommendations and guidelines. Dr. Zisis Kozlakidis, president of ISBER, took part in the opening ceremony and workshop that took place in Moscow on Nov 23th 2017 that was dedicated to the trends in the development of the Russian biobanking environment. “It’s really exciting to see this initiative taking shape,” he said, noting that Russia is placing itself amongst the world leaders in the expansion of biobanks.
National BioService (NBS) is one of few fully compliant organizations in Russia that provides domestic and international pharma and diagnostic companies with biological materials required for their R&D activities. It also develops tissue based products, including customized tissue microarrays (TMA) and biomarkers, provides in vitro preclinical testing services as well as helps other organizations in Russia to create their own biobanks in accordance with local and international standards. NBS collaborates with more than 90 clinical and research centers in 15 regions of Russia, the company said, with the ultimate aim of advancing Russia’s biopharmaceutical industry. Currently, most of medicines and diagnostics used in Russia are developed and produced abroad and for Russian companies to start making an impact, they need supporting services including access to biospecimens – the key area of expertise of NBS.