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UK Biobank Newsletter 2022

20 years of UK Biobank: the UK's most valuable scientific asset

Dear UK Biobank participant,

I am delighted to be writing to you with this year's newsletter, marking 20 years since UK Biobank was first conceived. In reaching this milestone, the resource has matured to become a key part of the nation’s scientific infrastructure and is arguably the world’s most important health resource. 

UK Biobank has transformed global health research and we are extremely proud of the research it has enabled worldwide, with over 6,000 papers that have used the UK Biobank research resource published to date. The success of the resource and the contribution it will make to public health in the next 20 years is down to your contribution, so we would like to extend an enormous thanks to you and every UK Biobank participant for your continued support. We are looking forward, with a sense of eager anticipation, to the scientific discoveries that will emerge over the next decade – and we hope you are too.

We continuously strive to enrich the resource with new data in order to make it even more valuable for research into a wide range of diseases and conditions. We are only able to do this through the generosity of industry, government and charitable collaboration. UK Biobank’s core funders, Wellcome and the Medical Research Council, who have generously supported the study from the beginning, recently completed our regular 5-year review and praised the exceptional progress and achievements of the UK Biobank study. We received a maximum score for both past and present performance, and for future scientific proposals, resulting in a funding award to continue our work over the next five years.

We are also delighted that in June of this year UK Biobank was included in the UK Research and Innovation’s (UKRI) list of projects it intends to fund in order to maintain the UK’s position as a research and innovation superpower. Subject to final approval, UK Biobank will receive funding from UKRI over the next 3 years, to replace and enhance its outdated infrastructure with faster, higher capacity and lower energy sample storage. This transformative funding will help create a new state-of-the-art facility in Manchester, helping UK Biobank meet the exponential demand from UK and international researchers for access to samples and data to unlock further scientific insights over the next 20 years.

UK Biobank and the scientific research community is hugely grateful for your continued commitment and for allowing us to follow your health over many years. Your contribution is of immeasurable value and it enables even more researchers globally to investigate the causes of many diseases and to improve prevention and treatment methods. Scientific and health-related findings are emerging at pace - you can keep up to date on research results through published scientific papers and other developments on our news page. 

Professor Sir Rory Collins

Principal Investigator and CEO, UK Biobank

View the newsletter as a PDF

Newsletter contents:

UK Biobank a valuable asset

UK Biobank is just getting into its stride

Impactful research

UK Biobank is changing the way science is approached

Contribute further

Our Future Health

Stay in touch

UK Biobank would like to keep in touch with you and give you the opportunity to help further if you wish to do so. We would prefer to keep in contact with you by email (as this is the most cost-effective and environmentally friendly way of staying in touch) so if you have an email address we would be grateful if you would consider sharing it with us.  

You can update your contact details (email address, phone number and postal address) by logging in to the participant website or by calling or emailing the Participant Resource Centre on 0800 0 276 276 or at

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