Strengthening best practices for biospecimen collection, Omics data sampling and handling

Pursuing PHINDaccess’s objectives of Excellence, a seminar titled “Strengthening best practices for biospecimen collection, Omics data sampling and handling” was organized at the Institut Pasteur de Tunis (IPT), November 14-15, 2019.

The seminar, organized by Pr. Houda Yacoub, involved 65 participants consisting of PhD students, Post-docs and researchers from IPT and from other universities in Tunis.

During his introductory talk, Pr. Samir Boubaker, Head of Public Health department at IPT, paid tribute to the late Pr. Amor Chadly, who led IPT for 25 years.

The seminar, which was competently facilitated by Marie-Noelle Ungeheuer and Dominique Clermont (IP, Paris, PHINDaccess partner), covered several aspects, such as (i) ethical, legal and regulatory issues related to biobanks, (ii) good practices for the collection, preparation, storage and distribution of human biological resources, (iii) the Nagoya Protocol for microorganisms handling, (iv) governance of biobanks, (v) challenges of personal data protection associated to human specimens; and (vi) examples of national (IPT, Tunis) and international (IP, Paris) biobanks. A debate revolving around the aforementioned aspects took place in an interactive manner and with concrete cases studies. The seminar was ended with examples on public and African databases as a prelude to PHINDaccess’s forthcoming event.

The seminar also involved Tunisian esteemed experts, namely Pr. Hend Bouacha, President of the National Medical Ethics Committee, Drs. Fatma Guerfali and Kais Ghedira (PHINDaccess members), Pr. Anis Klouz, Director General of SIPHAT, and Mr. Chawki Gaddes, President of the National Body for the Protection of Personal Data (INPDP).