The aetiology of juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA) is largely unknown. CLARITY – ChiLdhood Arthritis Risk factor Identification sTudY, is a biobank of biological samples and questionnaire data obtained from cases of JIA and healthy control children in Melbourne, Australia. The broad aim of the study is to identify genomic and environmental risk factors for the disease.CLARITY is a cross-sectional biobank with retrospective lifecourse data collected at time of enrolment, with the age of participants at enrolment ranging from 0 – 19 years. This data collection includes information on pregnancy and birth and biological samples from newborn (Guthrie) screening cards. Recruitment commenced in 2008 and is ongoing.

Melbourne Children’s Consortium for Lifecourse Research Study Summary
Study name ChiLdhood Arthritis Risk factor Identification sTudY
Study abbreviation CLARITY
Current principal investigator/s Dr Jane Munro
Primary Institution Murdoch Children’s Research Institute
Major Funding Sources NHMRC
Arthritis Australia
Rebecca L. Cooper Foundation
LEW Carty Charitable Foundation
ANZ Medical Research and Technologies in Victoria
Equity Trustees Lynne Quayle Charitable Trust Fund
The Australian Academy of Science
The Victorian State Government Operational Infrastructure Support Program
Australian Research Council
Study website
Key reference for study (published study protocol) Ellis, J.A., Ponsonby, A.L., Pezic, A., Chavez, R.A., Allen, R.C., Akikusa, J.D. and Munro, J.E. (2012). CLARITY – ChiLdhood Arthritis Risk factor Identification sTudY. Pediatr Rheumatol Online J. 10(1): 37. doi: 10.1186/1546-0096-10-37.
Are data available to others outside study team? Participant consent has been collected for the use of data/biospecimens in other studies, providing that use is approved by a HREC.
Study focus Identifying genomic and environmental disease risk factors for juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA)
Sampling frame Cases recruited from public or private clinics at RCH diagnosed with JIA by a paediatric rheumatologist before 16 years of age.
Controls recruited from RCH Day Surgery Unit attending for minor surgical procedures.
Year commenced 2008
Commencement sample (N) 1470 (as of July 2019): 710 cases, 760 controls
Annual attrition rate (%) Not applicable (cross-sectional study)
Age Range 0 – 19 years
Biosamples (e.g. buccal, blood, etc)? Blood – PBMCs, WBCs, gDNA
Guthrie cards from blood samples at enrolment
Newborn (Guthrie) screening cards – consent at enrolment to link; linkage to follow
Synovial fluid cells (cases only)
Intergenerational (e.g. offspring)? No
Imaging (e.g. FMRI, Ultrasound, etc)? No
Linkage (e.g. BioGrid, VPCDU, NAPLAN, etc)? No
Ethics approvals or requirements (generic or specific)? CLARITY protocols have been approved by RCH HREC. Participants have consented to one of three options for use of data and biospecimens – Use in JIA research only, use in immune disorder research, or use in all ethically approved research.
Year Age (mean, range) Eligible sample (not deceased,not withdrawn)
Enrolment (2008 – )
(ongoing recruitment)
0 – 19 years
Information also retrospectively collected at enrolment on pregnancy and birth
As of June 2019:
710 cases
760 controls

Principal Investigator

Dr Jane Munro

Ph: +61 3 934 54976