February 27 2020
We previously wrote about the enormous impact that the UK Biobank (UKBB) is having to translational research. Although the scientific outputs from this project are now beginning to stack up — as of February 2020, 1053 scientific papers had been published using the resource — the project was originally established almost 15 years ago, so these are the fruits of many years of labour.
The UKBB took several years of negotiation and planning to set up, followed by a further four years of participant engagement and recruitment, and then additional time for the subsequent data generation. From developing appropriate participant consent processes, to working out how best to make data available to as many groups as possible, there was a great many ethical, regulatory and fiscal challenges in setting up the UKBB. But these set the foundations for additional innovative biomedical research projects in the UK and further afield.