UCI News

UCI calls for volunteers as NIH’s landmark $1.5 billion precision medicine research effort launches nationwide

May 1, 2018
UCI calls for volunteers as NIH’s landmark $1.5 billion precision medicine research effort launches nationwide
Hoda Anton-Culver, right, with Michael J. Stamos, MD, dean of the UCI School of Medicine, is co-leader of the California Precision Medicine Consortium.

Irvine, Calif., May 1, 2018 — The All of Us Research Program opens for national enrollment Sunday, May 6. Led by the National Institutes of Health (NIH), All of Us is an unprecedented effort to gather genetic, biological, environmental, health and lifestyle data from 1 million or more volunteer participants living in the United States. A major component of the federal Precision Medicine Initiative, the program’s ultimate goal is to accelerate research and improve health.

“The diversity expected among California’s participants in the All of Us Research Program will be an important part of the scientific journey to discover how people’s personal characteristics, including genetics, behaviors and their physical environment, affect individual health,” said Hoda Anton-Culver, PhD, co-leader of the California Precision Medicine Consortium, principal investigator of the All of Us Research Program at UCI School of Medicine and director of the UCI Genetic Epidemiology Research Institute. “We look forward to advancing the future of health with our many participants.”

Unlike research studies that are focused on a specific disease or population, All of Us will serve as a national research resource to inform thousands of studies, covering a wide variety of health conditions. Researchers will be able to access data from the program to learn more about how individual differences in lifestyle, environment and biological makeup can influence health and disease. Participants will be able to access their own health information, summary data about the entire participant community and information about studies and findings that come from All of Us.

In California, the All of Us Research Program is being implemented by the California Precision Medicine Consortium, which is co-led by Anton-Culver and Lucila Ohno-Machado, MD, PhD, at UC San Diego Health and also includes UC Davis, UC San Francisco, Keck School of Medicine of the University of Southern California, Cedars-Sinai Medical Center and the San Diego Blood Bank. In San Diego, San Ysidro Health is also enrolling participants, and the Scripps Translational Science Institute at The Scripps Research Institute is working with corporate partners to enroll participants nationwide.

Congress has authorized $1.5 billion over 10 years for All of Us. More than 25,000 people nationwide have already joined the program as part of a yearlong beta testing phase that helped shape the participant experience.

“The time is now to transform how we conduct research — with participants as partners — to shed new light on how to stay healthy and manage disease in more personalized ways. This is what we can accomplish through All of Us,” said NIH Director Francis S. Collins, MD, PhD.

How to Participate

To learn more about the All of Us Research Program and how to join, please visit JoinAllofUs.org

  • Participants are asked to share different types of health and lifestyle information, including through online surveys and electronic health records, which will continue to be collected over the course of the program.
  • At different times over the coming months and years, participants may be asked to share physical measurements and provide blood and urine samples.
  • To sign up at UCI, please click on this link and enroll.
  • For participant questions, please call 949-824-0281or email allofus@uci.edu

To ensure that the program gathers information from all types of people, especially those who have been underrepresented in research, not everyone will be asked to give physical measures and samples. In the future, participants may be invited to share data through wearable devices and to join follow-up research studies, including clinical trials. Also in future phases of the program, children will be able to enroll, and the program will add more data types, such as genetic data.

Data from the program will be broadly accessible for research purposes. Ultimately, the All of Us Research program will be a rich and open data resource for traditional academic researchers as well as citizen scientists — and everyone in between.

 “All of Us” is a registered service mark of the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services (HHS).

About the University of California, Irvine: Founded in 1965, UCI is the youngest member of the prestigious Association of American Universities. The campus has produced three Nobel laureates and is known for its academic achievement, premier research, innovation and anteater mascot. Led by Chancellor Howard Gillman, UCI has more than 30,000 students and offers 192 degree programs. It’s located in one of the world’s safest and most economically vibrant communities and is Orange County’s second-largest employer, contributing $5 billion annually to the local economy. For more on UCI, visit www.uci.edu.