Biobanks for research. Ethical and legal aspects in human biological samples collections in France

- J Int Bioethique
Author/s: -Noiville, C.
Journal: J Int Bioethique
Year: 2012
Volume: 23
Issue: 2
Pages: 165-72, 183-4

Because they gather huge quantities of human biological samples and information allowing for better understanding of diseases, biobanks appear as a very powerful tool for boosting both medical research and public health as a whole. Although France does not really appear as a leader in biobanking compared to China or UK, biobanks and other samples collections abound in our country and have then been regulated, even though french law does not use the term biobank as such. The present article gives an overview of the current legal framework and explores the remaining ethical and legal issues, concerning particularly the protection of donors, the sharing of biobanks content and the sharing of biobanks benefits. The article explains how these universal questions arise in this country and what answers (sometimes specific) they get or could get in the following years.