VIKING Genes

VIKING Health Study - Shetland

The Viking Health Study - Shetland (VIKING) completed recruitment in 2015 and aims to discover the genes and variants that influence the risk of common, complex diseases.

Clickimin Broch Shetland

Many common diseases are known as complex, because they are influenced by multiple genes and environmental factors. Common, complex diseases include diabetes, osteoporosis, stroke, heart disease, myopia, glaucoma and chronic kidney and lung disease. Finding the genes involved is the first step on the road to developing new ways of diagnosing and treating these diseases.

From March 2013 – March 2015 we recruited 2,105 volunteers to take part in VIKING. Each volunteer completed a postal health survey questionnaire, attended a 2-hour measurement clinic and a 20-minute venepuncture clinic to give a blood sample at a dedicated research centre in Lerwick.

Once more like ORCADES we focussed research on those with at least two (mostly more) Shetlandic grandparents to allow studies in families which allow more approaches to gene discovery.

The success of the study is thanks to the fact that the people of Shetland have been exceptionally good at volunteering to participate. VIKING is now a platform resource for health research in Scotland.