Why do you want to take my DNA?

With your permission we would like to extract and store DNA from your blood to use in future research. Current research suggests that an increasing number of illnesses have a genetic element, such as cancer, diabetes, asthma and certain heart conditions.

Research using DNA from the blood samples previously given by you and other study members has led to important breakthroughs in our understanding of type 1 diabetes and Crohn’s disease. Looking at the genes from a large number of people combined with all the other information we collected about you, will help researchers to identify which genes are linked to certain conditions. This will help with understanding who is most at risk, which may in turn lead to improved diagnosis, treatment and disease prevention.

You may remember giving permission for us to extract DNA from the blood sample you provided in 2002-4. A second DNA sample will provide a unique opportunity for research within the new field of ‘epigenetics’ which investigates how and why genes are expressed (switched on and off) and the effect this may have on health and other aspects of life.