• Sweden edition
 
Half a million Swedes to fill giant gene bank
LifeGene test centre, Fridhemsplan, Stockholm

Half a million Swedes to fill giant gene bank

Published: 30 May 2010 12:42 GMT+02:00
Updated: 30 May 2010 12:42 GMT+02:00

Hundreds of thousands of Swedes will be approached this autumn by the mammoth LifeGene project and asked if they wish to participate in Sweden’s largest ever health-related population study.

Leading medical university Karolinska Institutet will host the project, which has secured the approval of the national Ethics Review Board.

Participants will donate blood and urine samples, which are to be frozen and stored in a gigantic underground facility at Karolinska Institutet in Solna, just north of Stockholm. People taking part in the project will also answer general question about their lives and habits as researchers seek to better understand the links between lifestyle, environment, genes, and disease.

LifeGene aims to build up a database of genetic material from half a million people aged 0 to 45. By following the development of participants’ health over a long period, LifeGene will allow researchers at home and abroad to explore the development of diseases such as cancer, diabetes, asthma, and heart illnesses.

All gene data collected for the project is to be coded, and LifeGene has pledged not to release any information that could lead to the identification of participants.

But Jan Wahlström, a professor of clinical genetics at Gothenburg University, has called for more debate on the potential ethical ramifications of the project. Speaking to Dagens Nyheter, he asked:

“Do we want our genes used in a study of markers showing when we’re going to die, for example? And can we be certain that information about the genes won’t fall into the wrong hands in the future?”

LifeGene's operating manager Jens Mattsson countered that the risk of identification was "non-existent".

Paul O'Mahony (paul.omahony@thelocal.se)

Don't miss...X
Left Right

Your comments about this article

15:32 May 30, 2010 by Michael84
That's really cool
18:23 May 30, 2010 by proteasome
Now we will find out why everyone is named Johansson, or Andersson or Karlsson... Inbreeding!
21:57 May 30, 2010 by Luke35711
In most other countries, I would say: great idea! In Sweden, I am sure manipulative Big Government will find some sad Orwellian way to make this work against the people,

rather than for the people. They might not identify individuals, but with time they will learn exactly how an individual works. So that there is no longer an individual, there is only Big Brother. There is actually a suitable term in biology: "slavemaking instinct". This project raises huge concerns about protection of privacy, human dignity, and individual liberties.
22:09 May 30, 2010 by glamshek
The information leading to death is only to God...SO need not worry. This is one area where we can bet 101%.
14:57 May 31, 2010 by Barnflicka90
The information leading to death is only to God? I dont understand "Glamshek" This is actually a really good idea. I think that more countries should do large studies such as this one. Maybe one day we will actually discover cures and causes for things we still cannot fix.
23:18 June 1, 2010 by Tiddler
Gene info is worth a fortune, and here is half a million Swedes just giving it away for free, complete numbskulls.

Only in Sweden, aka the Stepford Wives but on a much larger scale.
21:58 June 4, 2010 by suckfist
All they'd get is a sperm sample from me.
Today's headlines
Elite schools stripped of 'special' privileges

Elite schools stripped of 'special' privileges

Sweden's three elite boarding schools can no longer charge tuition fees, the government announced on Thursday, in a string of changes following a two-year review. READ  

Bildt lays out four steps to Gaza peace
Photos: TT

Bildt lays out four steps to Gaza peace

Swedish Foreign Minister Carl Bildt stated that there are four steps to achieving peace in Gaza, and that it begins with removing the blockade - which has "played into Hamas' hands". READ  

Malmström snags EU commissioner post again

Malmström snags EU commissioner post again

Cecilia Malmström has been nominated to be the European Commissioner for another five years, Sweden's prime minister announced on Thursday. READ  

Stockholm Pride 2014
In Pictures: Stockholm's Historic Pride Party
Conchita Wurst belts out a ballad. Photo: Rebecca Jacobs

In Pictures: Stockholm's Historic Pride Party

With Stockholm's Pride Week in full swing, The Local's Rebecca Jacobs heads on down to the traditional Historic Party to take in the colours, Conchita, and the community. READ  

Two to hospital after Stockholm fire

Two to hospital after Stockholm fire

Two people were taken to hospital in the early hours of Thursday morning after a fire began in their central Stockholm apartment. READ  

Salmonella prompts Coop hamburger recall
Photo: Jim Cole/TT

Salmonella prompts Coop hamburger recall

Swedish supermarket chain Coop has recalled its in-store brand of fresh hamburger meat after a routine check revealed traces of salmonella in the meat. READ  

What's On in Sweden
Photo: Roger Vikström/TT

What's On in Sweden

It's Pride Week in Stockholm. Find out more about the celebrations (including the biggest Pride Parade in Scandinavia) as well as plenty of other activities in Sweden's three biggest cities. READ  

Sweden resumes aid to 'anti-gay Uganda'
Hillevi Engström and protesters against Uganda's anti-gay laws. Photos: Maja Suslin/Ben Curtis/TT

Sweden resumes aid to 'anti-gay Uganda'

Sweden has resumed sending development aid funds to Uganda, after suspending payouts back in March due to "anti-gay legislation". READ  

The Local List
Top ten coffee spots in central Stockholm
Fanny feels at home at the Blå Lotus. Photo: Isabela Vrba

Top ten coffee spots in central Stockholm

If you're wondering where to grab your next cappucino, then wonder no more. The Local talked to the locals in Stockholm and found out the best spots in town for the ultimate fika experience. READ  

Swedish neo-Nazis join fight in Ukraine
The Azov task force. Photo: Sergei Chuzavkov/TT

Swedish neo-Nazis join fight in Ukraine

Four Swedes are fighting with the Ukrainian task force Azov - a squad which flies a flag with Nazi symbols and, according to one Swedish soldier, fights for "a white Ukraine". READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
People-watching
Gallery
People-watching - Stockholm Pride
Photo: Henrik Trygg/Imagebank Sweden
Society
Sweden worst in EU at getting foreigners jobs
Lifestyle
Stockholm Pride kicks off
Analysis
The top six ways the US and Sweden differ
National
Swedish youth suicides hit 25-year high
Blog updates

31 July

Calling a speedo a speedo (Blogweiser) »

"There are a lot of speedos on Europe’s beaches. Some European males are evidently more comfortable sporting small, stretchy suits on public beaches than I would be. I accept it may be nice to have swimwear that’s not long and cumbersome. A speedo is maybe also good for tanning. But strolling around town in a..." READ »

 

27 July

Approaching Stockholm (Around Sweden in a kayak) »

"I woke up in the comfort of my own little cabin on Eva and Rolf’s boat, it was 7:30am and I was feeling a bit groggy after a couple of beers with all the lovely locals the night before. The previous day had really taken its toll on my body and I was very stiff and..." READ »

 
 
 
National
Politician reported for selling 'negro ball'
National
Police turn blind eye to Swedish 'slave trade'
Gallery
Stockholm Pride: Allsång på Skansen with Conchita Wurst
Skatteverket
Sponsored Article
Introducing... ID cards and permits in Stockholm
Gallery
People-watching, June 26th - 28th. Get inside Stockholm's hottest nightclubs
Gallery
Top ten Swedish taboos
Society
Seven-year-old Swede cycles to Berlin
Politics
'Gaza conflict needs help, not empty rhetoric'
Society
Swedes voted 'most beautiful' in the Nordics
Business & Money
Sweden demands EU clarity on Bitcoin tax
National
Swedish organic sales enjoy 'amazing' growth
Photo: Johan Nilsson/TT
Society
What's On in Sweden
Gallery
People-watching July 23
National
Swedish cops elect not to shoot 'angry elks'
Business & Money
New alcohol retail rules threaten micro-breweries
Gallery
People-watching Båstad
Business & Money
Sweden falls to third in global innovation index
Society
Swedish ornithologists keep webcam watch
Photo: Andreas Nordström/Image Bank Sweden
Gallery
Top ten Swedish beach hot spots
Sponsored Article
Introducing... Your finances in Stockholm
Sponsored Article
Introducing... Housing in Stockholm
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

751
jobs available
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions is an innovative business company which provides valuable assistance with the Swedish Authorities, Swedish language practice and general communications. Call 073-100 47 81 or visit:
www.swedishdowntown.com
If you want to drink, that’s your business.
If you want to stop, we can help.

Learn more about English-language Alcoholics Anonymous in Sweden. No dues. No fees. Confidentiality assured.
AA-EUROPE.ORG/SWEDEN
PSD Media
PSD Media is marketing company that offers innovative solutions for online retailers. We provide modern solutions that help increase traffic and raise conversion. Visit our site at:
http://psdmedia.se