Qatar Biobank, a member of Qatar Foundation (QF), recently marked a major milestone with the screening of its 15,000th participant, part of its medical research initiative to improve the health of the local population through personalised medicine.
By providing biological samples and information, volunteer participants help Qatar Biobank enable medical researchers and healthcare professionals create a clearer picture of prevalent health-related issues in Qatar and the region.
According to Dr Asmaa Al Thani, Chairperson of the Qatar Genome Programme (QGP) Committee and Board Vice Chairperson of Qatar Biobank, they are delighted to celebrate the screening of their 15,000th participant – a milestone that represents the local population’s eagerness to contribute to their improved health. Qatar Biobank is an important initiative that plays a pivotal role in helping create a healthier local population for generations to come.
Researchers at QGP, another member of QF, are already using the samples from Qatar Biobank samples to gain important insights into the health of the local population, including the prevalence of diabetes, obesity, and vitamin D deficiency.
Dr Nahla Maher Afifi, Education and Scientific Manager and Acting Director of Qatar Biobank, said that Qatar Biobank serves as a large-scale biomedical research initiative that is based on the Arab world population, ensuring far more accurate and effective targeted medical treatments.
We encourage the people of Qatar who are eligible and have not yet been screened to participate in this vital initiative – the success of which is dependent on large-scale participation by the local population, particularly by Qatari youth.’
A regular visit to Qatar Biobank includes standard medical tests such as blood pressure and lung function. However, tests that are also carried out include new screenings that are not included in other large-scale biobanks, such as advanced imaging techniques to measure whole-body composition and the health of carotid arteries, and a treadmill test to measure physical fitness. Qataris over 18 years old and adult expatriates who have lived in Qatar for at least 15 years are encouraged to take part in this pioneering medical research.
All participants receive feedback in approximately two weeks after their initial visit. Participants who are found to have serious or life-threatening conditions are, however, notified immediately.
For more information about Qatar Biobank, visit qatarbiobank.org.qa/home.