BBMRI-ERIC ( is a European research infrastructure for biobanking bringing together all the main players from the biobanking field – researchers, biobankers, industry, and patients – to boost biomedical research. To that end, BBMRI-ERIC offer quality management services, support with ethical, legal and societal issues, and a number of online tools and software solutions. Ultimately, its goal is to make new treatments possible. BBMRI-ERIC currently includes 23 countries and one international organisation (IARC/WHO), making it one of the largest European distributed research infrastructures.

The mission of BBMRI-ERIC is to establish, operate, and develop a pan-European distributed research infrastructure of biobanks and biomolecular resources to facilitate the ACCESS to RESOURCES as well as FACILITIES and to support high-quality biomolecular and medical research.

Besides offering to biobanks quality management services, support with ethical, legal and societal issues, they offer a number of online tools and software solutions for describing the landscape of biobanks and sample repositories in Europe and facilitating access to these.

Access to European Biobanks which are a part of BBMRI-ERIC

The rules of access to biobank resources are determined separately by each country or biobanking unit. Quick and effective search of biobank resources and negotiation of access to samples is carried out using tools developed by the BBMRI-ERIC community, such as the Directory, Negotiator and Sample/Data Locator.


The Directory is a broad catalogue of our biobanks with aggregated information on their collections. It is tool that the user can utilise for finding suitable biobanks based on general criteria (diagnosis available, type of materials, countries, quality marks, collection types, data types). The database includes currently information from more than 400 biobanks with over 2900 collections, which together provide access to hundreds of millions of samples.


BBMRI-ERIC provides its Negotiator platform to support researchers and biobankers in this complex communication, allowing effective streamlining and monitoring throughout the process. This is particularly useful as the requests become more complex (for example the user needs to access sample/data or communicate with multiple candidate biobanks) and biobanks and biomolecular resources also need time to verify availability of the data and biological material for a particular purpose defined by the researcher/requester.

Sample/Data Locator

The Sample/Data Locator will be a service to locate samples and data sets hosted by the biobanks that are of interest for the requesters. The Locator will allow for detailed privacy-preserving, multi-criteria search of samples and data sets. This will also include the development of connectors to interface to the information systems of biobanks.

Access to samples of Rare Diseases and COVID-19

Biobanks from across the globe are invited to share their collections on the BBMRI-Directory to be visible to the entire research community throughout the world.