The Wales Cancer Bank is a research resource that provides samples and data to the cancer community worldwide. The biobank is funded from multiple sources and supported by the host institution, Cardiff University. WCB is very grateful for the support it receives from all funders.
The main infrastructure funding for WCB is provided by Health and Care Research Wales. This funding supports the majority of the staff salaries as well as other non-staff related expenditure. Welsh Government, through the various iterations of the Health Research and Development departments, was the founding funder of WCB in 2004 and continues to be the main contributor to facilitate this important biobanking activity.
Velindre NHS Trust fundraise to support projects that will improve outcomes for cancer patients and that will help to develop the research activities undertaken in Velindre Cancer Centre. This charity funding has supported posts in WCB to underpin lung consenting in Velindre and Cardiff since 2012, which has given hundreds of patients with lung cancer the opportunity to contribute samples to lung cancer research locally and nationally. The continued support for the lung consenting post has also enabled S E Wales patients to be screened (via the CRUK Stratified Medicine programme) for the national lung Matrix clinical trial.
WCB acts as the Cardiff Clinical hub for CRUK’s Stratified Medicine Programme (SMP) and receives funding from CRUK to help to support this activity. Samples from lung patients are tested for genetic mutations to inform on potential eligibility for a national lung trial (Matrix). WCB co-ordinates consenting and sample access and transfer to the All Wales Genetics Service (in Cardiff) for testing.
Cancer Research Wales is working in partnership with WCB to deliver the second ASTRA programme of research. The Access to patient Samples for Translational Research Awards (ASTRA) are intended to build capacity in research that uses biological samples. The ASTRAs were open to groups in Wales. The aim is that the work done under this programme will lead to breakthroughs to greater knowledge of how cancer starts, progresses and how it can be treated. CRW is funding 5 projects working on samples accessed through WCB and the two organisations are jointly managing the programme.
WCB has also received financial donations from individuals and groups. All donations are received via Cardiff University (as a registered charity) and are directed to WCB for use in targeted ways.