In May, the starting signal was given for the next major project within the Medical Informatics Initiative (MII), which aims to promote the integration of data across locations. To this end, 24 university medicine sites nationwide are participating in ABIDE_MI (Aligning Biobank and DIC efficiently) to link their local data integration centers and biobanks.
ABIDE_MI will contribute significantly to avoiding redundant structures in the German research landscape and to advancing the merging of information and data from biospecimens with further data from patient care. In this way, valuable information for medical research can be obtained from biospecimens and associated patient data. However, the project’s activities will not be limited to Germany, but should also create synergies at the European level. For this reason, close cooperation with the European biobank network BBMRI-ERIC is being sought, which already has strong links with the German biobank community.
An essential component for making these data available to researchers will be a central online portal – the German Portal for Medical Research Data – which will simplify the application process for research projects. Researchers can submit applications for projects there and request data and biospecimens for medical research purposes via a central hub. In addition, they can conduct feasibility studies through the portal to explore what data is available for research at MII’s university medical sites. Furthermore, patients can also gain insight into medical research through this portal by finding out about ongoing projects.
ABIDE_MI, which is jointly coordinated by MIRACUM’s site Erlangen, the MII Coordination Office and the German Biobank Node, is funded by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) with approximately 5 million Euros until October 2022.