Background: Coronary heart disease (CHD) poses a major health burden in the Gulf countries. Knowledge of novel genetic and proteomic markers of CHD will provide more precise estimates of risk while defining the pathways important in individual patients, revealing new targets for intervention, and ultimately enabling an individualized approach to care. We describe design of a biorepository with linkage to medical records to facilitate discovery of biomarkers for CHD. Methods: The goal of the Qatar Cardiovascular Biorepository (QCBio) is to archive plasma and DNA of 1000 Qatari patients with CHD and 1000 age, gender, and ethnicity-matched controls who have no history of CHD. Cases will include patients needing percutaneous intervention for symptomatic CHD or admitted with an acute coronary syndrome (myocardial infarction or unstable angina). Controls will be identified from the blood bank as adults who have no history of CHD. Relevant risk factors and comorbid conditions will be ascertained by electronic medical record (EMR)-based electronic phenotyping algorithms that included diagnosis and procedure codes, medication use and laboratory data. We will include processes to promote use of the biorepository by Qatari investigators by facilitating access to the repository for biomarker research, while maintaining the highest ethical standards with emphasis on patient confidentiality and stewardship of the biospecimens. Results: Thus far, we have a) created a patient questionnaire in Arabic to obtain information on demographic factors, cardiovascular disease risk factors, and family history; b) hired the technologist for sample processing, aliquoting, and DNA extraction; c) hired and trained the study coordinators who will recruit patients; d) developed consent forms in Arabic; e) put in place a Laboratory Information Management System (LIMS) for sample tracking; and f) set up a website for the study. We have obtained approval from the Hamad Medical Center IRB and recruitment is about to begin. We will present the progress made at various seminars and conferences of the Cardiology Department to increase awareness of QCBio.


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