Genetics & Bio Bank Unit

  • The biobank shall be biorepository to store biological samples (usually human) for use in research and shall become an important resource in medical research, supporting many types of contemporary research like genomics and personalized medicine


  • Arm clinical research teams with knowledge and tools to incorporate or
    expand genomics into their studies
  • Develop collaborative relationships with key genetics and genomics centers and investigators around the world
  • Departmental Grand Rounds Program in Genetics and Genomics - maximal utilization of individual clinical departmental program settings to highlight opportunities and advances in genetic research; genetic education embedded within each department

There are key components in setting up a bio bank, regardless of whether this is disease specific or population based. The cost, size and complexity of the bio bank will determine the scale of the below functions:

  • Prebanking data (clinical data, questionnaire, survey, communication, data management, monitoring and audit)
  • Collection of biological specimen (Collection, processing, storage, distribution, transport, dispatch management, quality control)
  • Collection of data related to biological specimen (recording, storage, data management, analysis, quality control and IT)
  • Expertise (project management, recruitment, SOP’s, support, education/training, regulatory responsibilities and statistics)
  • Administration and management (the day to day upkeep of the bio bank)

What we do in MAX

Our research led by Imperial College London aims to improve understanding of the environmental, behavioural and genomic mechanisms that underlie diabetes, heart disease, and other more common conditions in Indians. To achieve this, we have set up a comprehensive, large-scale study of  people's health in India. This study is also ongoing in Bangladesh, Pakistan and Sri Lanka. Together this is South Asia Biobank.

South Asia biobank will recruit at least 150,000 men and women aged 18 years and above from 200
sites. In India, this study is delivered by Max Healthcare by the department of Endocrinology, Diabetes and metabolism, led by Dr. Sujeet Jha and Madras Diabetes Research Foundation. In Delhi, we work in primary health centres of the South Delhi Municipal Corporation and will complete surveillance of 30,000 individuals. In Chennai, with the Corporation of Chennai, we will complete surveillance of 20,000 individuals. The surveillance of 30,000 Indians has been completed already. We will use the information and samples collected to pursue a wide range of research into the genetic, environmental and lifestyle factors influencing diabetes, heart disease, and other important conditions in South Asian populations.

The results of South Asia Biobank will also be made available to other scientists, health policymakers and other stakeholders to contribute to this research ambition. We hope that our research will help reveal the mechanisms underlying these diseases and formulate new approaches to identifying high-risk individuals and health promotion and disease prevention.

South Asia Biobank represents a long-term international collaboration between leading scientists and organisations from Bangladesh, India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Australia, Singapore, the UK and elsewhere. Our work is currently funded by Wellcome Trust and the UK National Institute for Health Research.

MHC is currently working on creating biobanks for Oncology especially with regard to large solid cancers.