UMCG focuses data and biobank Acutelines to better understand acute conditions


The UMCG establishes data and biobank Acutelines. It systematically includes data from patients who visit the Emergency Department of the UMCG due to acute complaints. With Acutelins, research is made possible to learn more about the development and course of acute disorders. The goal is to better recognize, treat and prevent acute conditions. It can also make it clearer about the consequences of an acute condition and how those consequences arise.

Acute conditions

Acutelines wants to make research into acute conditions possible by creating a database and a biobank. Data about the health of patients are stored in a database, while human tissue such as blood, urine and faeces are stored in a biobank. In Acutelines this is stored from patients who visited the emergency department of the UMCG with an acute condition. An acute admission to hospital has a great impact on a patient and often still has an effect on daily life after admission, especially in the elderly.

Their health status is monitored during hospitalization and also after the patient has left the UMCG. The data and the body material are very valuable for scientific research in the field of acute medicine.

Tracking of participants

Participants receive a questionnaire 3 months and a year after their emergency room visit. They will then be asked additional questions about their living situation, functioning, mood, fatigue, activity and health. This provides more insight into the consequences of an acute condition; not only in a medical sense, but also what the psychosocial consequences are.

Prevent acute conditions

According to internist Hjalmar Bouma, project leader of Acutelines, large collections of medical data and body materials enable researchers to conduct studies into both the short and long-term consequences of an acute condition. And also all factors, participant characteristics and treatments associated with it.

Bouma indicates the ultimate goal: ‘In addition, research is also possible into (risk) factors that may have contributed to the development of the acute condition. Take COVID-19, for example: how is it possible that there are many people who are infected, but have virtually no complaints, while other people become acutely seriously ill?

In the long term, we hope to be able to recognize acute conditions even more quickly, treat them more specifically and possibly even prevent them. By systematically collecting data, supplemented with measurements in the collected body materials, patterns can be recognized via computer programs to quickly recognize critically endangered patients and to advise the doctor on the best treatment at the moment. With this we can ensure that people age healthily; a wonderful contribution to healthy aging ‘.

Anonymous storage

All data is stored only with the consent of the patients; this is done anonymously. Every year about 25,000 patients come to the emergency room of the UMCG. Bouma: ‘We expect to be able to collect data from 3,500 to 5,000 patients in the first year. This includes, for example, patients with shock, blood poisoning or acute shortness of breath.

Source: UMCG

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