BC Platforms Biobanking Webinar

New Perspectives in Biobanking

Biobanks and repositories for biospecimens are vital for today’s clinical and bioindustry research. Full utilization of biobanks depends on their level of data standardization and availability of information about the housed biorepositories. As this information is generated in different environments, enforcement of standards may become challenging. Automation of sample registration reduces chances for human error, and is the best opportunity for conversions, cleaning and other data curation tasks.

If you can’t make the live recoding, the webinar will be available ‘on-demand’ immediately following the event.

Register and watch here.



Genomic information in the context of biobanks – achieving precision medicine

– What are the challenges in combining genomic and clinical biobank data?

– Are the hospitals ready for the coming of precision medicine?

– Who will benefit and who can tap into the biobank information and samples?

Kathleen Barnes, Director, Johns Hopkins Bayview Genetics Research Facility


How To Build An Optimal IT Infrastructure And Solutions For Biobanking

– How to include large scale genome and -omics data as part of the biobank

– How to allow third parties (academic, industry) to securely use data in your biobank

– Biobank registers and availability databases

Timo Kanninen, Chief Architect, BC Platforms


Collaboration with Academia, Industry and Healthcare

– What can you do to make your biobank interesting to industry or healthcare?

– What can be major hurdles in initiating collaborations?

– Experiences in successful collaboration between academia, industry, and healthcare

Aarno Palotie, Research Scientists in Psychiatry, Center for Human Genetic Research Massachusetts General Hospital




Kathleen Barnes

Dr. Kathleen Barnes is Professor of Medicine, Mary Beryl Patch Turnbull Scholar, in the Allergy & Clinical Immunology Division, Department of Medicine, with joint appointments in Pulmonary & Critical Care Medicine, the McKusick-Nathans Institute of Genetic Medicine, and Department of Epidemiology, Bloomberg School of Public Health, Johns Hopkins University. She received her Ph.D. in biomedical anthropology at the University of Florida, completed a fellowship in immunogenetics at the Johns Hopkins Asthma and Allergy Center, and subsequently joined the faculty. Her work focuses on the genetics of acute and chronic airway disease in family-based and independent clinical populations of African ancestry.



Timo Kanninen is founder and Chief Architect of BC Platforms Ltd. He is the visionary behind BC Platforms’ data platform and has long-term experience in professional software development, research and healthcare IT systems, genetic epidemiology, statistical genetics, and clinical statistics. Mr. Kanninen has studied information technology in production and statistics. He is a co-author on many scientific articles published in high-level journals, as well as scientific head of BC Platforms on multiple EU FP7 and IMI projects.


Aarno Palotie

Dr. Palotie is a faculty member at the Center for Human Genome Research at the Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston and at the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard and Research Director of the Human Genomics program at the Institute for Molecular Medicine Finland (FIMM) in Helsinki. Aarno received his MD and PhD degrees at the University of Oulu his speciality in Clinical Chemistry at the University of Helsinki. His past positions include professorships at the University of Helsinki, University of California Los Angeles (UCLA), Director of the Finnish Genome Centre at the University of Helsinki and a Senior Group Leader at the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute.

The overall goal of Aarno Palotie´s group is to improve our understanding of the genetic mechanisms underlying common diseases. Much of our work draws on the unique clinical and population-based samples collected from the Finnish founder population. One of the main focus areas is genetics of neurological, neurodevelopmental and neuropsychiatric traits.
The long lasting geographical and linguistic isolation, internal migrations, famines and rapid, recent expansions have moulded the population structure of Finland for thousands of years. Such population isolates provide exceptional opportunities for identification of genome variations underlying disease traits. When the unique population structure is combined with the one payer health care system, the harmonized training of physicians and tradition in epidemiological research Finland has become one the most interesting places for genetic epidemiology. The availability of large sample collections (www.nationalbiobanks.fi), mostly performed by the Institute of Health and Welfare THL (www.thl.fi) has stimulated large international collaborative projects such as the SISu project (Sequencing Initiative Suomi) that combines most of the large-scale sequence data produced worldwide. The aim is to construct a large genome data resource that facilitates to develop strong genome medicine programs.
Diseases of specific interest in the Palotie group are migraine, schizophrenia, epilepsy, their comorbidities and some cardiovascular traits. The wealth of multiple large study samples enables the group to use different study designs for genome variant identification and verification and for the estimation of the size of the effect contributed by the variants. These include large collaborative genome wide association (GWAs) and sequencing studies and studies that utilize family structures and extreme population bottlenecks to identify low frequency variant detection.