How are biobank samples acquired for research?

The biobank can assign samples and related data for the sole purpose of high-level health sciences research and product development.

If you are planning a research project and would like to use the biobank’s materials, contact us (see contact information) and tell us about your research design.

On the basis of our discussion, we will conduct a preliminary sample and data search.

Submit a preanalysis request


Auria Biopankin Extranet on tutkijoille suunnattu järjestelmä, jossa voi jättää sähköisesti esisielvityspyynnön.

Submit a request


You can submit samples and data requests to Auria Biopankki by logging in to Auria ProMa Extranet. If you do not already have extranet IDs, you can create your own IDs on the registration page:

The Scientific Steering Committee

Requests for samples and data are processed by Auria Biobank’s Scientific Steering Committee, which is in charge of the scientific evaluation of research projects involving the biobank.

The Scientific Steering Committee evaluates especially:

  • the scientific level of the research (theoretical grounds and methods to be used, etc.)
  • the significance and ethics of the research
  • the amount of material requested in relation to the number of samples in biobank and criteria for selecting the samples
  • the resources of the research project
  • how the project fits in with the biobank’s area of research

The Scientific Steering Committee may request that the application be supplemented with a statement by a regional ethics committee, as referred to in the Medical Research Act, or other additional statements. Any research carried out by the biobank itself is also evaluated according to the same criteria.

Composition of the Scientific Steering Committee

Chairman: Matti Laato (VSSHP), Kirurgia
vice Heikki Irjala

Presenting Official: Lila Kallio, Auria Biopankki

Secretary: Aulikki Santavuori, Auria Biopankki

Klaus Elenius (TY), Lääketieteellinen biokemia (vice prof. Kati Elima)
Laura Pirilä (TY), dos.
Ilmo Leivo (TY), Patologia (varalla dos. Pekka Taimen)
Jorma Toppari (VSSHP), Lastentaudit (vice prof. Harri Niinikoski)
Henna Karra (SatSHP), Patologia (vice Hannu Järveläinen (SatSHP), Sisätaudit)
Antti Jekunen (VSHP), Onkologia (vice Carl-Marcus Svartbäck, patologia)
Veikko Launis (TY), Lääketieteellinen etiikka
Tom Southerington (VSSHP), Tutkimuslakimies (vice Jari-Pekka Tuominen)
Veli-Matti Kähäri (TY), Prof.

Meetings of the Scientific Steering Committee

Last day to submit material in parentheses

Autumn 2018

27th of August (13th of August)

24th of September (10th of September)

22th of October (8th of October)

19rd of November (5th of November)

10st of Decembver (26th of November)


Auria Biobank’s Director makes the decision on whether to assign samples/data for biobank research on the basis of a statement by the Scientific Steering Committee.

Pursuant to the Biobank Act, Auria Biobank can restrict access to samples and data, especially if

  • the intended use goes against the biobank’s defined research area, the consent that forms the grounds for processing the sample, or legal requirements
  • the ethical or scientific level of the intended use cannot be verified
  • the professional or scientific qualifications of the applicant cannot be verified
  • the applicant’s prerequisites to comply with laws and the biobank’s guidelines and agreements cannot be verified
  • the material that is being requested is limited, so its use is being prioritised for very significant research
  • the material that is being requested is the original research subject of the researcher who collected the material, and assigning it for another purpose would jeopardise this primary use
  • the research plan that is being presented in the request overlaps with research that is already being conducted or which has already ended
  • use of the material that is being requested in the manner presented would jeopardise the protection of privacy
  • an ongoing intellectual property rights protection process would be jeopardised, or
  • the researcher has previously failed to fulfil his or her agreement with Auria Biobank

Preliminary meeting, agreement on the assignment of samples/data

Following a positive decision on the assignment of samples and data, a preliminary meeting with the applicant is arranged to agree on the details of how the project will be implemented and to provide a preliminary cost assessment.

A Material Transfer Agreement (MTA) concerning the assignment of samples and data is drawn up together with the researcher’s background organisation, and the costs are confirmed. The background organisation may be a Finnish or international research institution or company.

After signing the MTA, the samples and data can be handed over.

When the research ends, the results of the sample analysis and/or raw data is returned to the biobank in accordance with what is specified in the MTA.

The results of the research must also be published, depending on the research, for example in a scientific magazine.

General principles governing access to samples and data

The biobank assigns samples, research data gained from samples, and health data related to the donor for high-level health sciences research and product development. Written agreements concerning the assignment of samples and data are always concluded with the researcher’s background organisation. The background organisation may be a Finnish or international research institution or company in the sector.

As a rule, the assignment of samples and data takes place such that an individual cannot be identified from them. When it is necessary to link sample data to, e.g., register data, this is carried out by the biobank. The assignment of samples and data requires a supporting statement from the Scientific Steering Committee that monitors the biobank’s research activities, a positive decision from the biobank on the assignment, and an agreement on the terms and conditions of the assignment.

By order of the biobank, the researcher must submit the raw data collected during the research or the sample-specific analysis results to the biobank. The biobank enters the data in its sample and data registers, from where it can be assigned for other research purposes in future. If the donor so wishes and if the research data is of a sufficient standard, the research data can also be made available to the sample donor or the health-care unit treating the donor.

The biobank can also conduct research of its own, participate in research collaboration or employ external service providers for the processing and analysis of samples.



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PL 52, 20521 Turku, Finland

+358 50 578 0815



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