Welcome to the Mayo Clinic Biobank. The Mayo Clinic Biobank is a collection of samples, such as blood and health information donated by volunteers. Unlike many biobanks in existence at Mayo Clinic and elsewhere, the Mayo Clinic Biobank is not focused on any particular disease.
Rather, the Biobank collects samples and health information from patients and other volunteers regardless of their health history. The only requirements are that they be at least 18 years old, have a Mayo Clinic patient number and be able to give informed consent. Once a participant becomes a part of the Biobank, he or she becomes a part of ongoing health research conducted at Mayo Clinic.
The Biobank was established at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., and recruitment began in April 2009. The Biobank's initial goal was to enroll 20,000 Mayo Clinic patients over the course of a three-year period to support a wide array of health-related research studies throughout Mayo Clinic.
The Mayo Clinic Biobank is sending out a short (8-page) follow-up questionnaire to certain participants to find out about certain health conditions that may have developed since enrolling in the Biobank. The questionnaire includes a series of questions about gastric symptoms that would help us identify if you have an undiagnosed GI condition called irritable bowel syndrome. In addition, there are general health questions that your doctor would not typically ask.
This information helps the Biobank determine if your data and samples are appropriate for use in various studies. For example, if you have developed a particular disease since you enrolled in the Biobank, we would know not to use your sample as a "control" (someone without the disease). However, your sample could be used as a "case" (someone with the disease). Although some of this information may be in the Mayo medical records, we know that many people enrolled in the Biobank seek medical care at non-Mayo Clinic facilities. This questionnaire allows us to collect the same information from everyone.
You can expect to receive this questionnaire about four years after you enrolled. It's important you complete this questionnaire and return it, helping us to continue advancing medical research in many areas.
BioNews, issue No. 8 (Spring/Summer 2013), highlights:
Watch a YouTube interview with Janet Olson, Ph.D., the director of the Mayo Clinic Biobank.
Watch a YouTube video to learn how the Mayo Clinic Biobank invites community members to participate in research.