Skip to navigation Skip to main content Skip to footer

Scientific Conference 2021

A discussion about 20 years of UK Biobank

The Scientific Conference in November 2021 kicked off with a discussion of the past and future of UK Biobank. It was led by BBC's Medical Editor, Fergus Walsh and we were joined by Sir Jeremy Farrar, Professor Fiona Watt and Professor Sir Rory Collins. 


On-demand content from this discussion is available to watch on this webpage. 

Genetic sequencing in UK Biobank:

This session covered the exciting data releases of whole-exome and whole- genome sequencing on half a million participants - making UK Biobank by far the largest sequencing project anywhere in the world – and how these data are being made available to researchers. 

Whole body imaging:

This session covered the outstanding potential these data present to the research community and revealed some key findings made so far, including how repeat scanning has enabled novel research into the ongoing health implications of SARS-CoV-2 infection on the brain.  

Health outcome data:

This session reviewed the value of primary care data for research purposes and steps that are being put in place to access these data. This session also included information on the rationale for UK Biobank’s new Research Analysis Platform and how researchers can access the data.


Watch on-demand content from Feb 2021

Watch on-demand content from 2020

Attendees from 73 countries

tuned in to watch UK Biobank's Scientific Conference in Autumn 2021


Hannah Meyer, from Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory in New York is UK Biobank's Early Career Researcher of the Year 2021! 

Hannah's work on Genetic and functional insights into the fractal structure of the heart can be viewed in session 3 of the conference on-demand content

The two runners up were:

  • Jessye Maxwell from King’s College London and
  • Abhishek Niroula from the Broad Institute.

UK Biobank Doctoral Student of the Year 2021: Thesis in Three Minutes

New for 2021 – we received many great video submissions from some excellent students using the resource, you can view all the submissions via the UK Biobank Twitter account and YouTube channel.

The winner was Ben Faber from Bristol University – for his video on:

Does your hip shape cause osteoarthritis: findings from UK Biobank.


Session one:  Genetic Sequencing

Fergus Walsh

Session presenter: 20 years of UK Biobank

13:00 - 13:20 (GMT)

Sir Jeremy Farrar

Discussion of the past and future of UK Biobank

13:00 - 13:20 (GMT)

Professor Rory Collins

Discussion of the past and future of UK Biobank

13:00 - 13:20 (GMT)

Professor Fiona Watt

Discussion of the past and future of UK Biobank

13:00 - 13:20 (GMT)

Professor Marylyn Ritchie

Session Chair

13:20 - 14:20 (GMT)

Dr Ben Neale

Genebass: a portal to browse association results of the rare coding variation in UK Biobank

13:25 - 13:35 (GMT)

Professor Luca A Lotta

Genetics and obesity

13:35 - 13:45 (GMT)

Dr Kári Stefánsson

Value of whole genome sequencing

13:45 - 14:00 (GMT)

Dr Mary Helen Black

Applications of whole genome sequencing in pharmaceutical development

14:00 - 14:10 (GMT)

Professor Martin Tobin

Panel member

14:10 - 14:30 (GMT)

Dr Keren Carss

Panel member

14:10 - 14:30 (GMT)

Dr Yancy Lo

Panel member

14:10 - 14:30 (GMT)

Session two: Whole body imaging

Professor Paul Matthews

Session Chair

14:40 - 15:35 (GMT)

Dr Madeleine Cule

Imaging and artificial intelligence

14:45 - 14:55 (GMT)

Dr Wenjia Bai

Building the Shape Models for 100,000 Hearts

14:55 - 15:05 (GMT)

Ass. Professor Gwenaëlle Douaud

COVID repeat imaging

15:05 - 15:15 (GMT)

Dr Donald Lyall

Panel member

15:15 - 15:35 (GMT)

Session three: Health outcome data

Professor Naomi Allen

Session Chair

15:50 - 16:45 (GMT)

Dr Michael Chapman

Linking to central NHS records

15:55 - 16:05 (GMT)

Dr Ben Goldacre

The value of GP data and data access

16:05 - 16:15 (GMT)

Dr Mark Effingham

The UK Biobank RAP and future data releases

16:15 - 16:25 (GMT)

Professor Liam Smeeth

Panel member

16:25 - 16:45 (GMT)

Professor Dame Clare Gerada

Panel member

16:25 - 16:45 (GMT)

Professor Rory Collins

Summary and Early Career Researcher Award announcement

16:45 - 17:00 (GMT)

Rt. Hon. Professor Lord Ajay Kakkar

Closing summary

17:00 - 17:15 (GMT)

Last updated