NIHR BioResource page - Banner

NIHR BioResource for Mental Health

A BioResource is a large bank information that is usually used for scientific or medical research. This includes biological (such as blood), clinical (such as medical records) and neuroimaging information (such as brain scans).

The purpose of our National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) BioResource for Mental Health is to facilitate research that aims to improve our understanding of different mental illnesses and identify new and better treatments for neurological and psychiatric disorders.

Our aim is to bring together groups of healthy volunteers, patients and relatives who have agreed to be contacted and can be invited to participate in relevant clinical research. Data collected from this research forms a valuable resource that can support research across the different centres.

How can you help?

We aim to up to 20000 biological samples and clinical information from people who access services across South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust and other trusts each year.

If you would like to volunteer for the BioResource, or just find out more about the project, you can contact the team. Following this, if you decide to volunteer, you may be able to give your consent via post or alternatively one of the research team will arrange to meet with you.

They will give you a detailed explanation of the initiative, go through all the information with you and answer any questions you might have. If you decide to participate, you will be given an information sheet and asked to sign a copy of the consent form; you will also get a copy of the signed consent form to keep.

Benefits of participating

There will be no immediate benefit to you at the time of participation but you will be making a contribution to science. In addition to this, the knowledge gained as part of this and subsequent research may in the future help you and other sufferers of neurological and psychiatric disorders.

If you are not a patient at our Trust or one of our partner trusts

If you are not a patient of our Trust, Guy’s and St Thomas’ Hospital or King’s College Hospital, or if your medical records are unavailable or too brief, we may ask you to complete a short interview or questionnaire. This may take up to 60 minutes of your time.

Keeping your information confidential

Your samples will be anonymised (all personal information will be removed and replaced with a unique numeric code), processed and then stored at secure laboratories at the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience (IoPPN).

The anonymised samples (genetic data) will then be combined with your clinical records that have also been anonymised. Finally, we will also ask you whether you are happy to be contacted in the future regarding participation in follow-up studies. Samples can only be de-anonymised by authorised individuals who are responsible for securely storing the link between the numeric code and your personal information at the Trust. 

We will only do this if:

  1. We want to ask you to take part in a follow-up study
  2. We find anything that we should tell your doctor about

We will ask if it is okay for us to contact you in the future to take part in any more studies. If you are contacted for any follow-up studies, it is up to you to decide whether you would like to participate or not.

Kinds of samples we will need from you

Initially a blood sample will be taken (a maximum of 50ml, or approximately 10 teaspoons). We may also for a sample of your saliva.

Sample taking procedure and discomfort

It can be slightly uncomfortable when you have your blood taken – but it is the same procedure that would be used in an NHS clinic or at your doctor's surgery.

There are no special compensation arrangements in place for the unlikely event that you are harmed by taking part in this initiative. If you feel that you have not been dealt with properly, you can make a complaint through normal NHS routes.

If you decide you no longer want to participate

You have the right to withdraw some or all of your information from the study at any time. Your care will not be affected.

Contact for more information/register interest

You can call the team 9am to 5pm Monday to Friday on 020 7848 5381 or freephone 0800 9951999, or email

How to make a complaint

If you would like to make a complaint, you can contact:

Dr Gursharan Kalsi

Research Coordinator and Manager

Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience, King's College London

Or visit our complaints page for how to make a complaint though our Trust.


Global Banner