Stem cell banking: Between traceability and identifiability

Bartha M. Knoppers, Rosario Isasi

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

27 Scopus citations

Abstract

Stem cell banks are increasingly seen as an essential resource of biological materials for both basic and translational research. Stem cell banks support transnational access to quality-controlled and ethically sourced stem cell lines from different origins and of varying grades. According to the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, advances in regenerative medicine are leading to the development of a bioeconomy, 'a world where biotechnology contributes to a significant share of economic output'. Consequently, stem cell banks are destined to constitute a pillar of the bioeconomy in many countries. While certain ethical and legal concerns are specific to the nature of stem cells, stem cell banking could do well to examine the approaches fostered by tissue banking generally. Indeed, the past decade has seen a move to simplify and harmonize biological tissue and data banking so as to foster international interoperability. In particular, the issues of consent and of traceability illustrate not only commonalities but the opportunity for stem cell banking to appreciate the lessons learned in biobanking generally. This paper analyzes convergence and divergence in issues surrounding policy harmonization, transnational sharing, informed consent, traceability and return of results in the context of stem cell banks.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number73
JournalGenome Medicine
Volume2
Issue number10
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 5 2010

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Medicine
  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics
  • Genetics(clinical)

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