Technological advances in the past few decades have enabled researchers and physicians to celebrate wondrous medical breakthroughs. Many of these evolutionary progressions are achieved by utilising human body parts and tissues in research. The sequencing of the human genome has provided the international research community with a wealth of new information to use in further researching the role of genetic susceptibility in complex diseases. However, maximizing the utilization of this information to benefit public health globally necessitates population based knowledge regarding the frequency of susceptibility alleles, disease penetrance estimates, and the role of the gene interaction. To fulfil these goals, large regional populations are being recruited in many locations for the development of genetic databases usually called bio banks or genetic banks. The ”bio” in bio bank is derived from living, biological entities: people, animals, plants, bacteria. In the realm of bio banking, people are the source of the raw material for the discovery of genes for research, diagnosis, and therapy, raising a host of issues about rights and responsibilities, fiduciary and societal obligations.
© Walter de Gruyter