Estonian Genome Center, University of Tartu (The Estonian Biobank)
GWAS has been performed on 20,000 subjects with different Illumine arrays. Part of them, 2,100 subjects also have RNA from venous blood for gene expression study and 40 clinical chemistry/biochemistry analyses from serum and plasma performed at UT hospital laboratory. Metabolite analysis (NMR and MS) from the same individuals (n=12 000 in total) occurs in the final stage with the ENGAGE consortium. Full genome sequencing and exome sequencing is ongoing and we will get 2500 full genomes and 2500 exomes by the end of 2015. Follow-up has started and gene donors will be invited back, more than 1,900 have already done so. In addition, we link our database with the national registries and hospital databases in order to get the up to the date phenotypic information (end points and nonfatal events).
The director of the EGCUT is Prof. Andres Metspalu, M.D., Ph.D. and a member of the Estonian Academy of Sciences.
See also EGCUT 2001-2011
The Estonian Government decided to fund the creation of the Human Genes Research Act in 1999; a year later the Estonian Genome Project Foundation was founded. The primary task was to establish a large-scale population-based Biobank for the research and development in human genetics and genomics, collection of population-based genetic and health data, and implementation of the results from genetic studies for the promotion of public health.
The Estonian Genome Project Foundation became the Estonian Genome Center of the University of Tartu (Tartu Ülikooli Eesti Geenivaramu) in April 1, 2007
The funding for the Estonian Biobank at the EGCUT is provided from the Estonian Government through the budgets of the Ministry of Social Affairs and the Ministry of Education and Research. According to the §27 Funding of the chief processor of the Gene Bank:
1) The activities of the chief processor of the Gene Bank to maintain and store the Gene Bank get funding from the State budget by Ministry of Social Affairs.
2) The chief processor is funded by the State budget and from other resources in foreseen capacity to collect samples, health status descriptions and genealogy, to code and decode data, and for genetic research.
3) The researcher in genetics incurs direct costs for the release of the health data and tissue samples.