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BTRU-GEMS logo.jpg

Image illustrating Engagement

The development and application of HTS for donation screening is not just a technical challenge; the information provided by HTS present enormous ethical and confidentiality issues, referral decisions and potential future medical interventions for donors that are simply not encapsulated in existing donor consent forms and result reporting associated with current screening. We plan to create an expert committee with PPIE representation with the ultimate goal of improving care and fair representation for donors and patients at all stages. More specifically the PPIE aims are:


  1. Enhancing public perception of blood safety
  2. Debating how information is stored and utilised, particularly genomic details and the presence of infectious agents beyond those routinely screened 
  3. Improving donor consent 
  4. Increasing representation of LGBTQ+ and BAME individuals on steering committees and in donor banks 
  5. Interacting with external stakeholder groups such as Sickle Cell Disease Society and Stonewall

BTRU-GEMS PPIE strategy 

Lay glossary

Genomics: the study of genes and how they function

Microbiology: the study of all living organisms that are too small to be visible with the naked eye

High throughput sequencing: a term used to describe technologies that sequence DNA and RNA in a rapid and cost-effective manner

Virome: a term for all viruses in and on the human body



Unit director Peter Simmonds and other members of GMES participated in in BBC programme, Expert Witness, how virology can help criminal witness.jpg