Overview

Aims
A community-based cohort study comprised of 500,000 volunteers aged between 40-69 years in 2006-2010 from across the United Kingdom. Participants have undergone measures, provided blood, urine and saliva samples, detailed information about themselves and agreed to have their health followed. The study aims to improve the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of a wide range of serious and life-threatening illnesses including cancer, heart disease, stroke, diabetes, arthritis, osteoporosis, eye disorders, depression and forms of dementia.

Institution
UK Biobank

Geographic coverage - Nations
England, Scotland, Wales

Geographic coverage - Regions
Nationwide

Start date
2006

Sample

Sample type
Cohort study (Biobank)

Sample details
Invitations to participate in the study were mailed to 9 million people aged 40-69 whose contact details were obtained from Nation Health Service central registers. Recruitment aimed for an equal proportion of men and women and a balanced numbers in 5 year bands between the ages of 40-69 years.

The sample is not representative of the general population on a variety of sociodemographic, physical, lifestyle and health-related characteristics, with evidence of a 'healthy volunteer' selection bias. However, the large sample size and heterogeneity of exposure measures allow for valid scientific inferences of associations between exposures and health outcomes that are generalizable to the wider population.

Sample size at recruitment
Approx 500,000 individuals

Sample size at most recent sweep
158,000 - Online mental health follow up

Sex
All

Age at recruitment
40 years +

Cohort year of birth
1937-1970

Data

Data access
Application process ukbiobank.ac.uk/register-apply

Genetic data collected

Linkage to administrative data
Environmental data
Health data

Additional information

Website
ukbiobank.ac.uk

Related themes
Covid-19 data collection, Biomarkers, Cognitive measures, Diet and nutrition, Sexuality and gender identity, Housing, Socioeconomic status and deprivation, Loneliness and social isolation, Neighbourhood, Physical health assessment, Digital technology and social media, Victimisation and life events, Puberty, Reproductive health, Work and employment, Sleep problems

Reference paper

Sudlow, C., Gallacher, J., Allen, N., Beral, V., Burton, P., Danesh, J., ... & Collins, R. (2015). UK biobank: an open access resource for identifying the causes of a wide range of complex diseases of middle and old age. Plos med, 12(3), e1001779.
https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pmed.1001779
Davis, K. A., Cullen, B., Adams, M., Brailean, A., Breen, G., Coleman, J. R., ... & Hotopf, M. (2019). Indicators of mental disorders in UK Biobankā€”a comparison of approaches. International journal of methods in psychiatric research, 28(3), e1796.
https://doi.org/10.1002/mpr.1796

Funders
Department of Health and Social Care
Medical Research Council
Scottish Government
Wellcome Trust
Mental health measures timeline

Sweep name:

Cohort member age:

Data collection period:

Notes:

Physical health measures:

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