Monday, December 15, 2008

NHLBI Opens Resource for Genetic and Clinical Asthma Data

[Source: GenomeWeb News, a GenomeWeb staff reporter] — The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute has expanded its genetic and clinical data collection to include information collected from three asthma research networks, the National Institutes of Health said today.

The new project is part of the NHLBI’s SNP Health Association Resource (SHARe), a web-based dataset that provides researchers with free access to data from multiple, large population-based studies such as the Framingham Heart Study.

The new asthma component, called the SHARe-Asthma Resource Project (SHARP), includes data on 2,332 people with asthma and 805 families whose DNA was tested for 1 million genetic variations. SHARP also includes clinical data about lung function, allergy status, and respiratory symptoms.

The clinical data used in SHARP is being provided by the Childhood Asthma Management Program, the Childhood Asthma Research and Education Network, and the Asthma Clinical Research Network, all of which are funded by NHLBI.

The project will enable scientists to link participants’ genetic variations to their lab test results, making it possible to find out more about genetic influence on asthma and other airway diseases.

“Expanding the SHARe program to include asthma through the SHARP initiative will greatly expand our understanding of lung disease biology using genetic and genomic technologies,” NHLBI Director Elizabeth Nabel said in a statement.

SHARP data is available through the database of Genotypes and Phenotypes, or dbGaP, hosted by the National Center for Biotechnology Information.

Affymetrix developed SNP genotyping data for the asthma program under a contract with NHLBI.

More information about the new asthma program is available at the NIH’s website.

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