Did you know that in 2008, the Jerome Lejeune Institute in France launched a biological resource center (CRB) called BioJel?
Established in Paris, BioJel is a “biobank” – a repository that collects and stores human blood and tissue samples to be used in different clinical research studies. Unlike most biobanks, BioJel specializes in analyzing and distributing biological resources such as DNA, plasma, blood, and skin cells. The samples are exclusively collected by the Jerome Lejeune Institute from both youth and adult patients with genetic mental disorders. At BioJel, the team is mainly focused on the development of external, national, and international collaborations and supporting the Jerome Lejeune Institute in its clinical research projects. Its main goal is to facilitate research that improves the understanding of genetic intellectual disorders – and ultimately, improve the quality of care for individuals who have them.
Located in the same building as the Jerome Lejeune Institute, BioJel is an essential tool for researching genetic intellectual disorders. The close proximity of the two organizations allows for the rapid processing of samples and optimized pre-analytical treatment. Additionally, to make its data more easily accessible to external parties, the Jerome Lejeune Institute is working with BioJel to create a new virtual data warehouse for its samples, which would enable researchers to better visualize and analyze data.
Collaborating with BioJel
The Jerome Lejeune Institute isn’t the only organization that benefits from the work done by BioJel. Other researchers can also access BioJel samples and their associated data once they receive approval from BioJel’s Scientific Board. All requests are thoroughly investigated by the Board to ensure that the data will be used appropriately.
Thanks to BioJel, many genetic research teams from across the world can access important datasets to help them to complete their research. From projects that aim to find the gaps in scientific Down syndrome research, to those which aim to discover the best ways to treat patients with ADHD and Down syndrome, BioJel samples are utilized in a variety of research projects. In 2021 alone, BioJel has been cited in two research articles published in the prestigious scientific publications Translational Science of Rare Diseases and the Journal of Intellectual Disability Research.