Press release


13th April 2007




The first in a short series of documentaries about a DNA study involving volunteers from Lincolnshire is to be screened on Channel 4 on Saturday 14th April 2007.


In August last year the University of Lincoln appealed for volunteers to take part in a £2.3 million project looking into the link between genetics and diseases such as cancer.


Some preliminary results of a small pilot project are the subject of a three-part documentary series entitled ‘Face of Britain’ which will be aired on three consecutive Saturdays starting from this week.


The study on which the TV series is based is called ‘People of the British Isles’ and is being led by Professor Sir William Bodmer of the University of Oxford who is aiming to collect DNA samples from 3,500 people as a nationwide control group.


The researchers are looking at the genetics of different populations to see just how important genetic background is in many common diseases such as cancer and heart disease.


A secondary aim of the project is to use the DNA samples to investigate historical patterns of population movement within the UK.


The university’s Head of Forensic and Biomedical Sciences, Dr Ron Dixon, who is the local researcher, said: “We have now collected around 150 samples of DNA in Lincolnshire and this is a very good start. Nationally we need to collect DNA from the blood samples of 3500 volunteers so we still have a way to go.


“Lincolnshire is a target area because it is one of the great rural regions of England – people are likely to have stayed in farming / agricultural communities for many generations and the modern population may well reflect this.”


Dr Dixon is still looking for more volunteers. To qualify volunteers must be able to show that they, their parents and all their grandparents were all born in Lincolnshire. For further information please contact Dr Ron Dixon on 01522 886891.


For more information contact:

Sophie Gayler Communications Officer (Press and Media)

(01522) 886042

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