Explore your participation
Thank you for participating
Through your participation, UK Biobank is enabling the international research community to tackle the significant health issues facing us all today. Created as a prospective study over many years, UK Biobank is in a unique position to follow your health, allowing for vital clues to be uncovered as to why some people are healthier in old age than others.
The wealth of de-identified data we hold on you from genetics, lifestyle, imaging, and health records has also enabled us to respond quickly to the COVID-19 global crisis with pivotal research into the virus. UK Biobank data is used by approved researchers from all types of academic, charity, government and commercial organisations for health-related research that is in the public interest.
Keeping in touch
We want to stay in touch with you so that we can tell you about new results and offer you opportunities to help with further research initiatives. You can update your contact details through the UK Biobank participant website. You will need your 9-digit participant identification number (PID), which is on all correspondence we send to you. Alternatively, you can phone or email the Participant Resource Centre (PRC) team, and they can update your contact details. You can speak to the Participant Resource Centre on 0800 0276 276 Mon-Fri 9am-5pm.
Our participant website will be shut down for essential maintenance on the first Wednesday of each month between 8am and 9am.
We apologise for any inconvenience.
A unique picture of health
The UK Biobank imaging study is the most ambitious project to take pictures of the inside of the body ever undertaken. The imaging study is scanning the brain, heart, bones, and abdomen of 100,000 UK Biobank participants – and we are already halfway there. This unique, de-identified data is driving forward innovation in improving analysis techniques that hope to speed up the diagnosis of many life-threatening disorders, even before symptoms occur.
Enabling discoveries to improve human health
UK Biobank is an international first, providing global researchers with an unmatched level of data to investigate the causes, prevention, and treatment of disease.
UK Biobank data is used by approved researchers from all types of academic, charity, government and commercial organisations for health-related research that is in the public interest.
Researchers in over 90 countries are using these valuable, de-identified data to understand common and life-threatening conditions such as cancer, diabetes, depression, arthritis, and many more. Through some 9,000 published scientific papers, new discoveries to improve health outcomes are being found year on year with your help.
You can read about some of these discoveries on the Our impact page.
In addition to these scientific findings, UK Biobank is driving forward collaboration across countries and disciplines. We provide a unique platform for statisticians, ethicists, geneticists, and those working in artificial intelligence to come together to find imaginative, ground-breaking ways to improve public health.
Once studies are complete, researchers publish their results in scientific journals, so that other scientists and doctors can benefit from them. We ask that they do so in an open access manner, so that participants and the public can gain access to crucial insights into improving health. You can search our list of published papers by following the link below.
The next key discovery
Read summaries from the thousands of research studies currently underway through the vast amount of biomedical data available in UK Biobank on our approved research page. Find out more about research into an illness of particular interest to you, or whether there is research near to where you live.
Keeping your data secure
We take data security seriously, as your contribution is enabling discoveries that will improve the health and day to day lives of millions of people. The data you provide is de-identified by removing any information identifies you - such as your name, address and NHS number - before it is shared with researchers.
Researchers have no interest in identifying participants since their goal is to compare large groups of people to try and understand why some people develop certain illnesses and others do not.
Nonetheless, scientists must sign a legal contract before receiving data, promising they will not try to identify participants. Our data are protected by encryption and behind secure firewalls and our storage systems are tested regularly and updated when necessary.
You can find out more about the approval process for researchers on the Apply for access page.
General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)
We should like to assure you that we will only process, store and use your data in a manner that is consistent with the basis on which you joined UK Biobank (as described in the information materials and consent form). In particular, your information will continue to be made available only to bona fide researchers undertaking health research that is in the public good.
We hope you will not wish to withdraw from UK Biobank, because the project is of most value if participants stay with the project for many years, as even subtle changes in your health provide vital data to researchers. However, participants can withdraw at any time without providing a reason. You can find out more about the withdrawal options below.