Smoking set to kill one in three young men in China

Two-thirds of the young men in China start to smoke, mostly before age 20. A CKB led study published in The Lancet shows that around half of those who start smoking cigarettes as young men will eventually be killed by tobacco, unless they stop permanently. The results show that in China the annual number of tobacco deaths, mostly among men, had reached 1 million by 2010, and if current trends continue, it will be 2 million by 2030.


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Major funding secured for GWAS genotyping

CKB have received a major award from the MRC Newton Fund for further large-scale genotyping. The £5m funding will cover the costs of genotyping up to 100,000 CKB participants using a custom-designed 700K SNP Affymetrix genome-wide array recently optimised for the Chinese population. The project will use a genotyping platform and procedures already fully established at BGI, Shenzhen, China and will take 2-3 years to complete.


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Evaluation of type 2 diabetes genetic risk variants published.

The effects of 59 established type 2 diabetes risk loci were measured and assessed in 93,000 CKB participants. The study , published in Diabetologia, provides further evidence of shared genetic architecture for type 2 diabetes between Europeans and East Asians. It also indicates that GWAS meta-analyses may be vulnerable to substantial inflation of effect size estimates, compared with those observed in large-scale population-based cohort studies.


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CKB samples move into new purpose-built storage facility in China

The China National Cardiovascular Biocentre has opened in Xi Shan, Beijing. Storage facilities for CKB biological samples include 11 liquid nitrogen tanks, and 35 -80 °C freezers.


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CKB Data now available worldwide

The CKB study group is committed to making the data collected/generated on the cohort available to the scientific community in China, the UK and worldwide and actively engages with collaborators on a range of projects. A CKB Data Access System was launched in September 2015 and, following a period of privileged access to China-based researchers, the CKB is pleased to announce that the resource is now open to all.


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Adverse consequences of uncontrolled hypertension in China

A CKB report, published this week in JAMA Internal Medicine, found that about one-third of Chinese adults have hypertension (ie, high blood pressure levels), but <5% of them had their blood pressure properly controlled, causing substantial burden of premature deaths.


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Men in China Face Increasing Tobacco-Related Cancer Risks

A new CKB paper published in the journal Cancer assesses the emerging cancer risks associated with tobacco smoking and concludes that widespread smoking cessation offers China one of the most effective, and cost-effective, strategies for avoiding cancer and premature death over the next few decades.


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Regular consumption of spicy foods linked to lower risk of death

A recent analysis of CKB data published in the British Medical Journal examines the association between the consumption of spicy foods and the total risk and causes of death. The research found that participants who ate spicy foods almost every day had a relative 14% lower risk of death compared to those who consumed spicy foods less than once a week.


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Fresh fruit associated with lower risk of heart attack and stroke

People who eat fresh fruit on most days are at lower risk of heart attack and stroke than people who rarely eat fresh fruit, according to new CKB research published this week in the New England Journal of Medicine.


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Internet-based Case Adjudication System for clinical Events (i-CASE) used to review over 11,000 events

Since October 2014 i-CASE has been providing a team of 12 cardiologists and 23 neurologists from 14 of China’s leading hospitals with secure access to high quality images of patient records. To date they have used the system to assess and adjudicate 11,327 stroke and ischaemic heart disease events from a total of over 60,000.


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Health record COPD diagnoses of good quality

A report published in the International Journal of COPD concludes that COPD diagnoses obtained from electronic health records in China are of good quality and suitable for large population-based studies and do not warrant systematic adjudication of all the reported cases.


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Chinese adults with diabetes lose nine years of life.

In China, people with diabetes diagnosed in middle age lose, on average, nine years of life, according to new CKB research published in the January 17 issue of JAMA. This is mainly due to inadequate treatment, particularly in rural areas.


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China Kadoorie Biobank

Chronic diseases (e.g. heart attack, stroke, diabetes, and cancer) are the leading causes of death and disability in developed and developing countries. Large blood-based prospective cohort studies can provide reliable assessment of the complex interplay of lifestyle, environmental, and genetic susceptibility as causes of chronic disease. Establishing such a study in China is of particular value, given the large size of its population, its increasing burden of chronic diseases, its unique patterns of disease rates and risk exposures, and the limited evidence from previous studies about the causes of many common chronic conditions in this population.

The China Kadoorie Biobank (CKB), known previously as the Kadoorie Study of Chronic Disease in China (KSCDC), is set up to investigate the main genetic and environmental causes of common chronic diseases in the Chinese population. During 2004-8, over 510,000 adults were recruited from 10 geographically defined regions of China, with extensive data collection by questionnaire and physical measurements, and with long-term storage of blood samples for future study. All the participants are now being closely monitored for death and other health-related outcomes through linkage with established registries and health insurance databases in the study areas. Every few years, periodic re-surveys are also to be conducted in about 25,000 surviving participants, with a repeat interview, measurements and blood collection (as in the baseline survey) to help assess changes of risk exposures in the study population. This large, well-established, study will be a uniquely powerful and rich resource for investigating the main causes of many common chronic diseases over the next few decades, and the information generated will advance our understanding of disease aetiology not only in China but also in other countries.

The CKB is being conducted jointly by University of Oxford’s Clinical Trial Service Unit & Epidemiological Studies Unit (CTSU) and the Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences (CAMS). It was established with funding support to CTSU from the Kadoorie Charitable Foundation (KCF) in Hong Kong. The long-term continuation of the study is supported by the Wellcome Trust, with further support in China from the Chinese Natural Science Foundation and Chinese Ministry of Science and Technology. The UK Medical Research Council (MRC), British Heart Foundation (BHF) and Cancer Research UK (CRUK) also provide core funding to CTSU for the project.