KI Donatum was established in 2004, and offers post-mortem material to researchers. Swedish regulations regarding the use of material from deceased subjects are very strict, and special conditions must be fulfilled. KI Donatum offers support in writing applications for ethical approvals, and helps with study design in order to make them conform to Swedish regulations.
KI Donatum is not a biobank, instead tissues are specifically collected for each particular research project, and assists with retrieveal of project-specific medical and social background information. The use of this service has resulted in publications in Nature, Science, Cell and PNAS. Today, samples from 192 donors have been procured and processed for 12 different research projects.
Tissues are collected before or during the medico-legal autopsy. KI Donatum provides the practical service regarding continuous surveillance of donors, assessment of inclusion criteria, and accurate dissection and procurement of tissues of interest. KI Donatum also offers different types of requested processing, and short-term storage of material. Further, KI Donatum can provide certain testing of the donors and the tissues, e.g. to estimate post-mortem interval or other markers of suitability of tissues. Detailed, but non-person identifiable, data about the deceased subjects from the Forensic Pathology database, and from relatives, are retrieved and linked to the material collected.
For each project the principal investigator writes an agreement with KI Donatum. This requires that the project has been approved by a Regional Ethical Committee. KI Donatum charges the investigator a non-benefit fee based on the estimated cost for the work performed.