What's it about?
The Young People’s BioResource is dedicated to getting young people involved with research studies that involve genetics. The research studies will help improve the health of children and young people suffering from a wide range of illnesses.
Research into the origins of disease has revealed that most diseases start in childhood, yet most health research is carried out in adults. We are therefore missing clues and opportunities to help prevent illness in children, and in the adults they will become. This research will also help us understand what makes us healthy and what can make us suffer from disease.
The programme will identify children and young people who are willing to be involved in research studies. We collaborate closely with researchers and healthcare professionals who are working to understand how to diagnose and treat common and rare diseases.
Many children and young people are living with a long-term illness (for example diabetes, heart disease, or a mental health condition) and a number suffer from multiple illnesses. Living with long-term disease can have a major impact on them and their families.
How are we inviting parents and young people to get involved?
We are working in partnership with the Anna Freud National Centre for Children and Families, a leading national children’s mental health charity. They are helping us to work with schools to invite young people between the ages of 11 and 15 to join us and help make a difference.
We are starting by piloting the project in a small number of schools in England.
The next stage will be working with secondary schools across the whole country. We will also start contacting families through health services, for example through their GP or through hospital clinics.
Find out more & register your interest
Email us if you are interested in taking part or would like more information on the Young People’s BioResource.
What do I have to do?
If a young person decides to join the Young People’s BioResource, they and their parent/guardian will be asked to fill in a consent form that describes how their sample might be used in research.
We will also ask young people to donate a small saliva sample and complete a questionnaire about their health and lifestyle.
The saliva sample will be used to extract cells and DNA. This is so we can study the genetic make-up and the role of genes in keeping us healthy.
Finally, we will ask participants and their parent/guardian to grant us access to the young person's health, education and social care records. For more information on what participation entails, please see our participants page.
In the Young People’s BioResource, both the young person and their parent/guardian need to agree to take part.
If you are interested in joining the Young People’s BioResource, we've outlined the seven steps.