Genomics England partners with National Biosample Centre

19 February 2015

Genomics England has announced a formal partnership with the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) National Biosample Centre for long-term storage of the 100,000 Genomes Project patient samples. 

Genomics England’s Main Programme Managing Director James Peach said: “The NIHR National Biosample Centre’s robust infrastructure and latest technology will enable high calibre research and new scientific insights. Ultimately this will mean new diagnostics and treatments for the benefit of patients”.

The NIHR National Biosample Centre in Milton Keynes was opened last month as a national resource for biomedical and clinical research with the capacity to store over 20 million biological samples. The facilities are available to academic, NHS and commercial researchers, subject to governance frameworks.

Opening the centre, Life Sciences Minister, George Freeman said: “The NHS is not only a world class healthcare system but it is fast becoming recognised as a world class research platform for 21st Century medical innovation”.

The NIHR National Biosample Centre is a £24 million collaboration between the University of Oxford and the UK Biocentre, which in turn arose from the UK Biobank.

George Freeman recently described the £300 million English showcase 100,000 Genomes Project was the ‘NASA of genomic medicine’ in bringing together genomic data and NHS medical records. It is intended to create a legacy of genomic medicine, so far yielding a number of NHS Genomic Medicine Centres, the Genomics England Sequencing Centre at the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute, and a national network of NHS Genomic Laboratory Services configured around them, although these plans are still at the consultation stage.

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