In reference to the SPAN/SPIN Study:

What is the purpose of this study?

The purpose of this research study is to investigate how personality traits of parents and their children are related to stress and health at various points in time. Our research project is concerned simultaneously with psychosocial factors (stress, social support, and health behaviors) and biological factors that connect the health of parents to the health of their children and their grandchildren.

The SPAN study is over a decade old. How long do you plan on keeping the study going?

Currently, there is no plan to discontinue the SPAN study in the near future. Demands and priorities in the world of research are constantly evolving as new problems arise. Participants of the SPAN study are especially important, as we have been collecting data on the same individuals since 2007. Having this unique set of participants is especially valuable in investigating new research interests. 

This study sounds interesting…where can I sign up to be a participant?

Since our study is primarily focused on health across multiple generations, we are only accepting people that are biologically related to our original SPAN participants. Should you meet that criterion you can contact the lab coordinator for further information.

In reference to the Blood Draw:

What are you looking for in the blood?

We are currently looking at biomarkers of inflammation (specifically CRP, TNF-alpha, and IL-6). These are molecules that have been associated with both stress and various health outcomes. One of our primary interests is understanding the mechanisms by which stress can impact your risk for certain physical and mental health changes later in life. In the future, we may look at other relevant molecules as well as genetic markers.

Why do you need four tubes of blood?

Each tube has a different chemical additive which makes it suitable for specific tests.

Can I get a copy of my test results?

Unfortunately we are not able to provide you (or your doctor) with your individual results. As a research lab, we follow a specific set of guidelines/protocols for storing and testing samples. These are different from the guidelines/protocols followed by diagnostic medical labs, hospitals, and your doctor’s office. Because of these differences, federal law prohibits us from sharing your individual results with you. We do however, have a multitude of papers published using data collected from this study and you can find those on our Publications Page.

I just had blood drawn at my doctor’s office (or another lab). Why can’t you use that/get the information from them?

Most of the tests we are doing on these samples are not commonly used for diagnostic or other routine purposes. Even if the same test are being performed, it is important that we do them using our equipment/protocols to be able to use them in our analyses.

Do you have additional questions? Send us a message!

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