Pramanik R.,Biomedical Research Center |
Pramanik R.,Kings College London |
Thompson H.,Kings College London |
Kistler J.O.,Kings College London |
And 4 more authors.
International Journal of Epidemiology | Year: 2012
Background: The UK Biobank (UKB) is a national epidemiological study of the health of 500 000 people, aged 40-69 years, who completed health-related tests and a questionnaire and gave samples of blood and urine. Salivas collected from 120 000 of these subjects were transported at 4°C and were placed in ultra-low temperature archives at up to 24 h after collection. The present study assessed how changes in saliva composition under UKB conditions influence a range of potential biomarkers resulting from holding saliva at 4°C for 24 h. Methods: Unstimulated whole-mouth saliva samples were collected from 23 volunteers aged 45-69 years. Salivas were split into aliquots some of which were immediately frozen at -80°C, whereas others were stored at 4°C for 24 h and then frozen at -80°C, mimicking the UKB protocol. Results: Assessment of mRNA by real-time polymerase chain reaction revealed no difference between samples that were analysed after the UKB protocol and those that were immediately preserved. Immunochemical analysis showed some loss of β-Actin under UKB conditions, whereas other salivary proteins including cytokines and C-reactive protein appeared to be unaffected. Cortisol and showed no reduction by UKB conditions, but salivary nitrite was reduced by 30%. The oral microbiome, as revealed by sequencing 16S rRNA genes, showed variations between subjects, but paired samples within subjects were very similar. Conclusions: Our results suggest that many salivary components remain little affected under UKB collection and handling protocols, suggesting that the resource of 120 000 samples held in storage will be useful for phenotyping subjects and revealing potential prognostic disease biomarkers. © The Author 2012; all rights reserved. Source
Agency: GTR | Branch: MRC | Program: | Phase: Intramural | Award Amount: 9.60M | Year: 2013
In UK Biobank, questionnaire data, physical measurements and biological samples have been collected from 500,000 men and women aged 40-69, and their health is now being followed long-term. A prospective cohort like UK Biobank allows reliable assessment of the relevance of many different exposures to the development of many different diseases. However, such studies need to be big because only a relatively small proportion of participants will develop any particular disease. It is now planned to conduct specialised imaging of the brain, heart, large blood vessels, abdomen, bone and joints in 100,000 UK Biobank participants. Although imaging has been done in some other studies, these have involved only small numbers of people (typically less than 5,000) and have focussed on imaging particular parts of the body. By contrast, combination of imaging data from different parts of the body in 100,000 UK Biobank participants with the detailed non-imaging data already collected will provide a unique resource for researchers from around the world to investigate the causes of different diseases. (For example, dementia may be related to imaging measures not only from the brain but also from other parts of the body, as well as to genetic, biochemical or environmental information.)
The Journal of Improbable Research gives out the IgNobel Awards, but also publishes "Real research, about anything and everything, from everywhere. Research that's maybe good or bad, important or trivial, valuable or worthless." A good candidate might be the vast study Active commuting and obesity in mid-life: cross-sectional, observational evidence from UK Biobank. It came up with a conclusion that seems pretty obvious and well documented; according to Richard Masoner of Cyclicious: The study actually looked at 150,000 people aged between 40 and 69 in the UK, and it turns out that bikes are best, with the average cycling man weighing 11 pounds less than the driver, and the average woman 9.7 pounds less. “We found that, compared with commuting by car, public transport, walking and cycling or a mix of all three are associated with reductions in body mass and body fat percentage, even when accounting for demographic and socioeconomic factors,” said study author Dr Ellen Flint, Lecturer in Population Health from the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, UK. “Many people live too far from their workplace for walking or cycling to be feasible, but even the incidental physical activity involved in public transport can have an important effect.” © UrbanToronto/ the endless Spadina Station tunnel. No wonder people lose weight. Ellen Flint has been in TreeHugger previously, with a study that looked at whether people who took transit were skinnier and found that indeed it was almost as good as cycling. That's probably because there is a lot of walking to get to the bus stop and a lot of stairs and tunnels in the subway system. John Pulcher of Rutgers University has also made the point. However, even though the study seems a bit redundant, it's the biggest yet and is yet more confirmation of the benefits to society and individuals of getting out of their cars and on to active transportation. As Richard Masoner notes, "Your daily drive to work not only slowly kills everyone around you, it slowly kills you as well."
News Article | April 16, 2016
Rsearchers have presented a new study that supports the cardiovascular safety of calcium and vitamin D supplementation. The study was based on analysis of the UK Biobank, a very large study comprising 502,664 men and women aged 40-69 years.
Genetics may have a say in when people lose their virginity. A new study of more than 125,000 people in the United Kingdom has identified gene differences that influence the age of puberty, as well as the age at which people first have sexual intercourse and have their first child. The age at which people have their first sexual intercourse is largely influenced by social factors, for example, peer pressure and family culture, the researchers noted. But the new findings also suggest that genetics also play a role. "Clearly some of the things that impact the age of first sex are social," study co-author Felix Day, a genetics researcher at the University of Cambridge in the U.K., told Live Science. "By using genetics, we hope to uncover additional biological factors that contribute." [10 Surprising Sex Statistics] The researchers identified 38 genes, which can be broadly separated into two groups. Some of the genes influence a person's physical maturity, whereas others appear to contribute to personality type, the team reported today (April 18) in the journal Nature. "The first group includes genes that act on known reproductive pathways and are involved in the timing of puberty," Day said. These genes influence when people's bodies are biologically ready for sex, which in turn affects the age of first sexual intercourse. The second group of genes, which are linked to people's personality traits, appear to influence people's tendency to take risks, which is linked to having sex earlier, or their level of irritability, which in the study appeared to be linked with having sex later. The reason the age of first sexual intercourse is of interest to scientists is that it is linked with negative outcomes in educational achievements and mental health later in life. Similarly, puberty at an earlier age is linked to increased risk for diseases such as diabetes, heart disease and some cancers, the researchers said. By exploring the genetic influences underlying these traits the researchers hope to better understand the relationship between these health outcomes, Day said. "Like with many other situations, it's nature and nurture. There's likely to be some influence of both, and also some interplay between the two of them," Day said. [10 Facts Every Parent Should Know About Their Teen's Brain] One interesting finding of the study was that over recent generations, the average age at which people first have sex has decreased, Day said. "That's not going to be due to genetics, so societal factors are clearly playing an important role," he said. The analysis was done using genetic data from 125,000 men and women between ages 40 and 69, who participated in UK Biobank, a national study for health research. The researchers also looked at two other independent datasets, including about 240,000 people in Iceland and 20,000 participants in the United States. While information about the age of first intercourse wasn't available in these two datasets, the researchers observed the same relationships between the identified genes and the age at which people first had a child. Copyright 2016 LiveScience, a Purch company. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.