5,000 Emiratis join first phase of major health study

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The UAE Healthy Future Study is being carried out by New York University—Abu Dhabi. — Supplied photo
The UAE Healthy Future Study is being carried out by New York University-Abu Dhabi. - Supplied photo

Published: Wed 21 Mar 2018, 2:12 PM

Last updated: Wed 21 Mar 2018, 4:32 PM

The UAE Healthy Future study, a first-of-its-kind one investigating the root causes of  high levels of diabetes, obesity, and heart disease in the UAE, has reached a critical milestone.
It secured the participation of over 5,000 Emirati volunteers, out of the required 20,000.
The study, led by NYU Abu Dhabi (NYUAD), aims to enlist 20,000 Emirati participants between the ages of 18 and 40 by August 2019, in an effort to establish the extent to which genetics, lifestyle and environmental conditions affect the long-term health outcomes of UAE nationals.
The results of this long-term study will undoubtedly enable physicians and scientists to better understand the reasons why the UAE has one of the highest rates of lifestyle diseases in the world, including obesity, diabetes, and heart disease.
Participation in the UAE Healthy Future Study involves a seamless registration process, completion of a questionnaire, as well as the provision of body measurements and biological specimens; blood, urine, and saliva.
The analysis of the data is then processed at the Public Health Research Centre at NYUAD, while participants are observed through follow-up online questionnaires and clinic visits.
Emiratis interested in taking part in the study can sign up at convenient registration and assessment centers located at Cleveland Clinic Abu Dhabi, Abu Dhabi Blood Bank, Healthpoint Hospital in Abu Dhabi or Al Ain Regional Blood Bank and UAE University in Al Ain.
Dr Raghib Ali, principal investigator of the UAE Healthy Future study said: "To really understand the causes of diabetes and heart disease, and how we can prevent them, it is very important for the study to have the full 20,000 participants.
"We encourage all interested UAE Nationals to visit our clinics to take part and help us to build a healthier future for the UAE."
The UAE Healthy Future Study will be present for the Special Olympics Festival at NYUAD, during the Special Olympics MENA Games 2018 on March 18, and 19.
The study is being conducted in collaboration with Zayed Military Hospital, the Abu Dhabi Health Services Company (SEHA), Sheikh Khalifa Medical City (SKMC), Abu Dhabi Blood Bank, Al Ain Regional Blood Bank, Cleveland Clinic Abu Dhabi, Healthpoint Hospital, UAE University, Khalifa University, and Zayed University and the Higher Colleges of Technology.

By Jasmine Al Kuttab

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