Doha, Qatar: The latest data shared by Qatar Biobank, a member of Qatar Foundation (QF), shows a reduction in the prevalence of lifestyle diseases, reflecting Qatar’s efforts to reduce risk factors for chronic non-communicable diseases.

Qatar Biobank shared insights from a new study on the prevalence of conditions including lifestyle diseases in the country. It shows reduction in some conditions compared to previous data released by Qatar Biobank. The new cohort study involving 10,000 participants found high prevalence of dyslipidemia (high cholesterol levels) among the participants, followed by diabetes and hypertension.

The study found that 30.1% participants had dyslipidemia, 17.4% had diabetes, 16.8% had hypertension, and 9.1% had asthma. However, the prevalence of dyslipidemia, hypertension, and asthma is less than the data collected by the biobank in 2016 for the cohort.

According to the data, 44% of participants showed high cholesterol, 29% showed high blood pressure, and 16 % had a previous diagnosis of asthma. However, only 15.5% had diabetes.

One of the significant findings of the cohort was that almost 80% of the referred population before attending the clinic had an undiagnosed condition which was identified through the Qatar Biobank medical review office and referred for further investigations and treatment.

Between December 2015 and December 2016, some 33% of participants in the cohort study were newly diagnosed with dyslipidemia, 25 with high blood pressure, and 3% showed insulin resistance.

The evidence-based reduction in the prevalence of lifestyle diseases is shown in the backdrop of several initiatives and strategies such as the National Health Strategy 2017 to 2022. Qatar has taken timely actions for prevention, screening, early intervention to lifestyle diseases, and the promotion of healthy lifestyles.

Qatar Biobank under the umbrella of the Qatar Precision Health Institute aims to make vital health research possible by collecting biological samples and data on health and lifestyle from large numbers of Qatari population. It plays an important role in advancing research endeavours through a streamlined research access application process and proficient scientific data extraction.

The cohort study, a population-based long-term study, aims to collect high quality biological samples and annotated data among Qataris and long-term residents who live in Qatar for at least 15 years to promote medical research. A follow-up study on the participants is done five years after the first visit. “Our population-based initiative in Qatar gathers comprehensive health data and biological samples for global research. The study utilises various approaches, including questionnaires, sample collection, imaging, and other disciplines aimed at understanding biological systems,” Qatar Biobank said on social media platforms.

At present, Qatar Biobank has 39,635 registered participants for the cohort study, and among them 30,570 are Qataris.

All participants give consent to provide their biological samples and information for research.­­

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