About the study

EXCEED (Extended Cohort for E-health, Environment and DNA) has been studying the causes of long term health conditions since it began in 2013. EXCEED is currently looking at the pandemic coronavirus disease, COVID-19. We aim to understand why some people develop more severe COVID-19 than others, and to understand its impact on long term health conditions.

The chances of getting diseases are affected by your environment and genes. Environmental influences include smoking and air quality. Genetic influences are passed through the family and are written in your DNA. Understanding the genetic causes of diseases is used to develop new medicines, and to identify groups of people who may be more at risk of developing particular diseases. Improved understanding of the environmental causes of diseases can help shape policies to improve the environment and therefore reduce the risk of disease.

The sponsor organisation responsible for the study is the University of Leicester.

EXCEED is funded by the University of Leicester, the NIHR Leicester Respiratory Biomedical Research Centre, the NIHR Clinical Research Network East Midlands, the Medical Research Council (grant G0902313) and the Wellcome Trust (grant 202849).

How is EXCEED being used?

Researchers in Leicester and elsewhere are using EXCEED to study topics including childhood infections, the effectiveness of treatments to help people stop smoking, and responses to antidepressants. So far, three research articles have been published using EXCEED.