From Our Activities

Five years BONEBANK - and it goes on

31.08.2020 - After five years of successful collaboration, the final conference of BONEBANK took place on 20 August, 2020. After a round table on the application of stem cell therapy, the partners presented their results in short speeches. "The conference represents in a really good way what the partners have achieved in the project. Together we have developed a unique value chain and I do look forward to further cooperation with the partners in the new founded BONEBANK Interest Group", said lead partner Lina Nießen.
With the BONEBANK Interest Group the network around the use of stem cells will continue beyond the project. The network is a platform for future projects and studies. Institutions and companies are invited to become members.  to the conference video

Results published

11.08.2020 – The project partners have presented and published their results in publications for different target groups:

Save the date: Final BONEBANK-Conference goes online

07.07.2020 – On August 20, the final conference of BONEBANK will take place online. The German and Danish project partners present their success of the last year and a half. How can the extraction of stem cells be simplified? Which quality standards must be met? How can BONEBANK benefit from Smart Data? The experts will answer these and further questions from 9.30am to 13.00am. The event is a CME-certified advanced training. A registration is easy (name, e-mail adress, password). To the programme

IT training for BONEBANK data centre

28.01.2020 – The IT training for the BONEBANK data centre took place in Lübeck on January 27, 2020. Kai Diercks and Christina Bober, from soventec, trained the persons who will work with the database that contains the stem cell samples. They explained the structure and use of the central IT solution (BONEBANK DB): How do I create specific templates? How do I set up users and assign access rights? And above all: How do I search for specific parameters of the stored samples? These training courses are the prerequisite for using the biobank effectively. In addition, the high standards of data security are met. The EU’s General Data Protection Regulation is applicable.

Professor Habermann in the Steering Committee of GBN and GBA

13.01.2020 - German Biobank Node (GBN) and German Biobank Alliance (GBA) have elected a new Steering Committee. The BONEBANK project partner, Professor Dr. Jens Habermann from the Interdisciplinary Centre for Biobanking-Lübeck (ICB-L), was elected for the category 'Biobank Representative'.
The Steering Committee supports GBN in the implementation of the work program and ensures that GBA's biobanks can cooperate effectively. The committee decides on all GBA matters and shapes the strategic direction. At BONEBANK Professor Habermann's team is responsible for the validation of established methods for molecular quality determination and their adaptation to the GMP conditions.

"Competence Atlas" developed for BONEBANK

10.12.2019 – There are many companies and institutes in the German-Danish border region that are involved in stem cells, bone healing and related therapies. In order to link these regional competences more closely, the project partner Life Science Nord has developed an online search function. The function is implemented in the already existing cooperation portal LSN XCHANGE of the project partner. Based on keywords in this area, users will receive information on further focal points and contact possibilities of the organisations in order to find the right cooperation partner in the North. Register free of charge at to take advantage of these regional competencies. The BONEBANK Competence Atlas can be found on the homepage after login.

Research paper published in Translational Medicine journal

23.11.2019 – Our project partners from the University Hospital in Odense have published the results of their clinical study in the journal STEM CELLS Translational Medicine. The research paper is about the relationship between cell morphology and stem cell functions. The title is 'Single-cell high content imaging parameters predict functional phenotype of cultured human bone marrow stromal stem cells'.
The scientists have identified selection criteria for bone marrow stem cells that can be used in future studies to promote bone regeneration. The study was conducted as part of the BONEBANK project. Congratulations to Justyna Kowal, Hagen Schmal and Moustapha Kassem!
The publication is available at
STEM CELLS Translational Medicine is a monthly, peer-reviewed journal which works to advance the utilization of cells for clinical therapy and bridges stem cell molecular and biological research.

Chinese Delegation meets BONEBANK

07.10.2019 -  In early October 2019, the Dean of the Medical School at Tsinghua University visited our project partner Life Science Nord, accompanied by representatives of the ZhengZhou Life Science Cluster. The ZhengZhou Life Science Cluster is a new initiative to build a campus in cooperation with the Tsinghua University. The BONEBANK project was also presented during the visit and received great interest from the Chinese side. The Tsinghua University is one of the most prestigious universities in the world. The associated university hospital has over 10,000 beds.

Vision in Video

19.09.2019 - Christina Bober from project partner soventec has created a short video to explain in a simple way their vision of how sample data of cell products is shared between different hospitals via the BONEBANK data centre.
soventec is developing a software to connect all  hospitals that are involved in the BONEBANK project via special IT-solutions. Within these processes 'data protection and data security are of great importance', as executive director Kai Diercks states.
to the video

BONEBANK at the Europe Biobank Week in Lübeck!

05.08.2019 – Three of our partners, Regina Maushagen, Giulia Facchinetti, and Timo Gemoll, successfully submitted their abstracts to the renowned Europe Biobank Week 2019 which took place from October, 8th to 11th in Lübeck. Regina gave an oral presentation about the topic “The German-Danish Interreg project BONEBANK aims to establish a GMP-conform bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells workflow for regenerative medicine”. Giulia hold a poster presentation about the topic „Influence of cryopreservation on bone cells quality parameters”. Timo Gemoll presented orally the “Use of high-resolution liquid-chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry to determine sample quality in hospital integrated biobanks” including data from the BONEBANK consortia.  to the conference website

Final report on BONEBANK available for download

12.06.2019 – The first joint project meeting of the BONEBANK extension phase took place on June 12 in the rooms of the Chamber of Industry and Commerce in Schleswig.
The meeting focused primarily on workshop sessions in which focal topics and main challenges were addressed with the aim of developing systematic approaches to tackle these challenges.
BONEBANK’S extension phase is all about the consolidation of the existing results, the foundation of a BONEBANK organisation, the development of a GMP compliant novel cell product, the establishing a competence atlas and to make BONEBANK sustainable after the end of the project.

Final report on BONEBANK available for download

29.03.2019 – ‘As a surgeon I throw bone marrow and bone pieces containing this valuable resource in the bin on a daily basis. What a waste!’ says BONEBANK project partner Prof. Arndt Peter Schulz from the University Hospital Schleswig-Holstein. This refers to stem cells that are disposed of as medical waste during routine operations. In their 22-page final report, the project partners show which solutions BONEBANK has developed over the last three years in order to not throw away biomaterial and the stem cells it contains, but to collect them, store them in a biobank and make them available to research. A new surgical instrument, concepts for the transport chain of biomaterial and the development of an IT infrastructure - these and more results are presented by the project partners in their final report. to the final report

New BONEBANK Newsletter

05.03.2019 The current BONEBANK newsletter focuses on the Bone Innovation Summit 2019. Download the newsletter to learn more about the research fields and the key findings presented by the project partners. to the Newsletter

BONEBANK enters extension phase

01.03.2019 The biobank and innovation platform moves on to the second round! Until August 2020, a funding amount of EUR 1.5 million enables BONEBANK to involve not only stakeholders such as biobanks and companies in the project, but also collection hospitals and hospitals carrying out implantations. At the kick-off meeting from 14 to 15 March in Odense, the German and Danish partners have set the course for further cooperation and agreed on a common approach for the next 18 months. More efficiency in bone harvesting, an even better quality of the stem cells harvested for the biobank and a platform for the data centre - these are the core topics that will be in the focus of the continuation of the BONEBANK project. The new project partners, the Department of Clinical Immunology of the Næstved Hospital and the University of Lübeck, will help in this respect. The Chambers of Commerce and Industry in Lübeck will be the new network partner to establish, maintain and intensify contacts with the regional economy.


15.02.2019 – How can innovations in the field of bone healing be driven forward? What methods can be developed to successfully treat complications such as infections and bone malpositions? What goals are being pursued in current research? How can industry and hospitals work together successfully? These and other questions were discussed at the BONE INNOVATION SUMMIT 2019 by representatives from industry, research and hospitals. The international conference was open with a keynote address by Dietmar Hutmacher, Professor at Queensland University of Technology in Brisbane, Australia and expert in regenerative medicine. Organisers were the Interreg projects BFCC and BONEBANK as well as the Northopedics Network, which is funded by the state of Schleswig-Holstein. All three projects deal with specific aspects of bone healing.
The BONE INNOVATION SUMMIT 2019 took place on 13 and 14 February in the Media Docks in Lübeck. read more

High visit at Stryker

21.12.2018 – On 27 November a Danish delegation of the region Sjælland (Zealand) visited the BONEBANK partner Stryker in Schönkirchen near Kiel. The delegation consisted of Heino Knudsen, President of the Zealand Region Council, Holger Schau Rasmussen, Mayor of the municipality of Lolland, and five other regional representatives. They gained an insight into the goals as well as current and future activities of BONEBANK. The challenges in the field of manufacturing medical devices and possible starting points for further cooperation were discussed. During a subsequent tour, the delegation had the opportunity to take a look at the production process.

Before the meeting, the delegation had met Prime Minister Daniel Günther and Minister for European Affairs Dr. Sütterlin-Waack to sign a joint action plan 2019-2020 for future cooperation.

BONEBANK goes BIO-Europe - driving forward our business case!

12.11.18 – The BONEBANK project was represented at the BIO-Europe in Copenhagen, Denmark, in November 2018. The main goal for our project partner Thomas Frahm (Life Science Nord Management GmbH) was to pitch the business model and ideas for products. He was to find out what international companies and decision makers of the biotechnology and pharmaceutical industry think about our findings which has been developed in the last two years. In summary, we had 19 meetings with decision makers of 14 nations. The conversations focused on the project itself, the business model for stem cells for research, quality of stem cells, regulatory aspects and the benefit for patients and industry. Most of the people had a strong interest at the cells in general, especially in relation to clinical cases (patient specific stem cells with clinical background information). Therefore, BONEBANK is on the right track and the project partners are working to provide in the future stem cells for therapeutically aspects. The project extension BONEBANK extension phase that starts in March 2019 enables the expansion of these activities.

BIO-Europa is held annually in different cities and is the largest partnering conference for the global biotech industry in Europe. In 2019, the BIO-Europe will take place in Hamburg, Germany, from 11th-13th November. Life Science Nord will be the regional host for the third time.

Health systems in Germany and Denmark

12.10.2018 - The BONEBANK project partners compared the German and Danish health systems. Their issues: Which opportunities do the respective systems offer for the stem cell research? What activities are there to support the development of stem cells which are suitable for therapy purposes? Is there potential for reimbursement? The analysis is supposed to give evidence for future developments.

To the PDF document Overview and comparison of health and reimbursement systems relevant for exploitation of stem cells

Green light for BONEBANK extension phase

25.07.2018 - The project partners have submitted an application to extend the BONEBANK project, which now has been approved by the INTERREG Secretariat. With an additional budget of EUR 1.5 million, further stakeholders such as harvesting and implementing hospitals, biobanks and companies will be involved and a BONEBANK organisation established.
The Department of Clinical Immunology of the Næstved Hospital and the University of Lübeck are contributing their expertise as new project partners. The Chamber of Commerce in Lübeck will support the network partners in maintaining contacts with the regional economy.

BONEBANK-Harvester successfully tested in the US

25.06.2018 - Within the development of a suitable, medical harvesting instrument for material containing stem cells, a workshop took place in New Jersey/US. At the beginning of June an experienced surgeon carefully tested the BONEBANK-Harvester with anatomical specimen. The test certifies the safe function of the device and a good handling for the surgeon in different deployment scenarios. The tester confirmed the applicability of the device during the operation and the low risk assessment for the patient.

Personal contact with Danish MedTech companies

20.06.2018 - A delegation of Danish medical technology companies visited Lübeck on the 18th and 19th June to get in touch with German actors in the health sector. BONEBANK with its cross-border biobank was also in demand. Professor Arndt Peter Schulz presented BONEBANK's goals and activities at the IHK in Lübeck: ”Important contacts could be made with Danish medical technology companies to help us achieve their goals in BONEBANK, such as developing suitable sterile packaging material and developing a stem cell implantation device.” said the orthopaedist and trauma surgeon from the University Hospital Schleswig-Holstein.
The trip was organised by the Danish Health Tech Group (DHTG). DHTG brings together suppliers of products and solutions for the medical device, pharmaceutical and hospital sectors.

Europe Biobank Week 2018: Abstract accepted

10.06.2018 - The Interdisciplinary Centre for Biobanking-Lübeck had submitted an abstract for the Europe Biobank Week 2018 under the title "International Harmonization and Standardization between Denmark and Germany: The German-Danish Interreg project BONEBANK". This abstract has now been accepted by the Scientific Committee. BONEBANK partners will thus be present at one of the most important biobanking conferences worldwide.
Europe Biobank Week 2018 will take place from the 4th to 7th September 2018 in Antwerp, Belgium. The biobanking community meets there to discuss the future challenges for biobanking, to network and to explore new perspectives of cooperation. The topic for 2018 is "Biosharing for Scientific Discovery". More information at:

The biobankers also submitted an abstract to the National Biobank Symposium in Berlin on the 11th and 12th December 2018 - with good chances.

Samples taken from over 100 patients

The project partners of the University Hospital of Lübeck have so far collected bone material from 40 patients, 24 of which are stored in nitrogen tanks at temperatures below -150°C in the Interdisciplinary Center for Biobanking-Lübeck. The remaining 16 samples were sent to the University Hospital in Odense for processing. The Danish project partner collected bone marrow samples from 68 donors at Odense University Hospital and successfully isolated stromal (mesenchymal) stem cells, which are currently being analysed. Thus, the target size, as formulated in the project proposal, has already been achieved. In the application, 20 samples were planned in Schleswig-Holstein and 20 in Denmark.

BONEBANK on NDR television

19.04.2018 - The television was visiting Arndt Peter Schulz and a reportage was published that was shown in Schleswig-Holstein magazine. The Lübeck accident surgeon tells in an interview how he came up with the idea of using medical waste to extract stem cells for the treatment of bone fractures. In three minutes, the video contribution illustrates how one pays into the "bone bank of Lübeck".

Valuable network contacts at "BioMedTec Ideas"

23.03.2018 - BONEBANK was represented with a booth at the "BioMedTec Ideas" in Lübeck. Scientists and entrepreneurs in the medical technology and life sciences industry presented innovative product developments and ideas. At the numerous exhibitor stands, a marketplace of ideas arose, where developments were discussed, contacts were made and customers were acquired. “We have had interesting discussions that can promote the transfer of our research activities into the economy," said Timo Gemoll from the University Medical Center Schleswig-Holstein, Campus Lübeck. The molecular biologist, together with his colleagues Professor Arndt Peter Schulz and Lina Nießen, represented the Interreg project. The event was organized by the Chamber of Commerce and Industry Lübeck together with other cooperation partners.

Cryopreservation of bone material and isolated stem cells at the UKSH

10.03.2018 - Which methods can be applied to isolate and cultivate stem cells so that they can be used for therapeutic use in regenerative medicine? What are the optimal condition to store bone material and isolated stem cells? The BONEBANK partners from the University Hospital Schleswig-Holstein (UKSH) in Lübeck try to answer these questions.  to the article

Interview with lead partner Arndt Peter Schulz

01.03.2018 - Arndt Peter Schulz from University Hospital Schleswig-Holstein (UKSH) explains why BONEBANK is a multidimensional innovative project.  to the interview

Shared parameters set for the database

13.02.2018 - One of the central prerequisites for a cross-border biodata database is the uniform specification of the parameters that the participating partners document for the characterization of the samples, or for finding the samples for further processing. The German and Danish partners have now agreed on these uniform parameters at a project meeting in Kiel. The parameter set for the sample database takes equal account of German and Danish interests with regard to common standards.
At BONEBANK, the extracted bone material is collected and processed by one team in Odense and one in Lübeck,  respectively. The data of these decentrally created samples are entered into the virtual sample database. With web-based access, the samples can be managed across teams and identified at any time.
This database is customized and extended by soventec based on its sample management software Lab OS®, especially designed and extended for the BONEBANK project.
In the next step, Soventec converts the parameters into data templates and makes them available to the partners via input masks. In particular, the matching of different codes used in the Danish and German health care systems presents a challenge. If this succeeds, it will considerably simplify the subsequent work on common data.

Workshop with innovative health projects in Odense

30.11.2017 - With the slogan "Health Innovation - Today and Tomorrow", the programme Interreg Deutschland-Danmark organized the first health workshop in Forskerparken, the science park in Odense. The Interreg projects were invited, which promote innovative solutions in the health sector. The focus was on the exchange of experience and networking with one another regarding joint activities in the future. For BONEBANK lead partner Arndt Peter Schulz, the workshop was a complete success: "We talked to many other partners and made interesting contacts. And thus, some ideas developed for future Interreg projects. I hope that something like this will take place again soon."

© Möller / IHK
© Möller / IHK

Stem Cell Project of Interest for Regional Economy

06.10.2017 - The latest partner meeting of Interreg project BONEBANK took place at the IHK-office in Schleswig on September 28 and 29. The German and Danish partners from science and economy agreed upon their next steps in the setup of the cross-border biobank for bone marrow stem cells. Involved is Anke Spoorendonk, retired Minister for European affairs of Schleswig-Holstein, who joined the project advisory board.
The chamber of commerce and industry backs the project: “Regional economy can profit as well, in particular the life science industry,” says managing director Stefan Wesemann. “Businesses can utilise the stem cell products for research and development activities or create new products.”
Project partner Kai Diercks from soventec GmbH, an internationally operating software company, adds, “We are pleased to support the development of this promising stem cell-based healing process in documentation and logistics with our IT solutions.”

BONEBANK at Global Biobank Week 2017

15.09.2017 - This year’s Global Biobank Week took place in Stockholm under the motto of “Towards Harmony in Biobanking.” BONEBANK’s project partners had the opportunity to introduce themselves to an international audience of professionals though a poster presentation “Crossborder biobanking: The German-Danish Interreg project BONEBANK.”
The partners used the conference to exchange ideas with other biobankers and stem cell researchers: “A source of great interest to all was the fact that we use material discarded as ‘waste’ during routine operations. Especially biobankers, who are specialised in the conservation of human tissue, are hurt by this wastefulness,” says Christina Bober of soventec GmbH.
The conference’s programme offered many topics of great relevance for the BONEBANK project partner’s further work, e.g. the IT connection of different biobank locations. Experts in this field gave talks on the ethical and legal bases – regarding locations in different countries as well.

Software for efficient data-management in the cross-border Biobank

01.06.2017 - To provide the efficiency of the BONEBANK stem cell biobank, one objective of the project is connecting the IT infrastructure of the participating sites, thus allowing for convenient work with the shared data. The software used for this purpose should identify the samples from the BONEBANK project and describe their characteristics and qualities in specific parameters. Pseudonymous records are managed together so that relevant information about the donor samples can be found through structured searches. to the article

Market-analysis shows the future potential of BONEBANK

01.06.2017 - What are the needs and requirements of public and industrial stem cell research? Which conditions apply to biobanking, the extraction of stem cells and their use? These are the questions pursued by us at Life Science Nord Management GmbH in our "Needs and Requirement Analysis," which provides information about research and development as well as the clinical and industrial applications of stem cells. to the article

Isolating stem cells from left-over material after surgeries

01.06.2017 - There are more than 100 ongoing clinical trials using bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells (BM-MSCs). Due to the limited access to stem cells we developed a new strategy of collecting bone marrow material for MSC isolation; instead of aspirating bone marrow from healthy volunteer donors, we collect it from waste material generated during routine surgeries of consenting patients. to the article

Highest requirements for new surgical instruments

01.06.2017 - The concept of the entire BONEBANK project is mainly predicated upon the availability of a specific surgical instrument, which can be used by surgeons during the course of fracture treatment to remove an adequate quantity of biologically vital, high-quality stem cells. As a globally recognised manufacturer of medical products, the company STRYKER has the expertise, capacity and internal structure to purposefully and efficiently succeed in providing provision of, and approval for such an instrument in Europe. to the article

BMBF invests EUR 14.4 million in German biobanks

30.05.2017 - The Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) funds biobanks with EUR 14.4 million. Biobanks offer a high potential for the innovative promotion of health. Significant sample- and data-storehouses for the research of diseases can be build due to biobanks.

Our project partner, the Interdisciplinary Centrum for Biobanking-Lübeck (ICB-L) with Prof. Jens K. Habermann is also funded by the BMBF.

Read the full press release (in German)


Surgeons are interested in our innovative project

27.03.2017 - Our project partners from the University Medical Centre Schleswig-Holstein, Campus Lübeck and Life Science Nord Management GmbH represented the BONEBANK project with an information booth at the 134th Congress of the German Society for Surgery. Prof. Arndt Peter Schulz, Lina Nießen, Wiebke Zweig, Dr Anna Struck and Dr Gerhard Heinrichs are happy about the great interest of the congress participants.

Opening conference on stem cell research

01.10.2016 - In September 2016, we hold our opening conference called "Stem cells for bone regeneration: State-of-the-art research and solutions" in Odense, Denmark. It was a successful event with a lot of inspiring facts and ideas for a cross-border cooperation in the field of stem cells.


to the Programme (PDF)

"Business and Science: Two worlds. One idea."

25.09.2016 - The Fehmarnbelt Days 2016 focused on the cooperation between economy and research. Our project partner Nils Reimers of Stryker described the excellent cooperation between economy and research on the basis of BONEBANK as best practice.

Bone stem cells were harvested

01.08.2016 - In July 2016, we started the harvesting process of bone marrow stem cells for our first pre-study. Project partner Lina Nießen takes a closer look on the specific procedure.