GEM Project

Initiated in 2008, the Genetic, Environmental, Microbial (GEM) Project is an international research study attempting to determine possible causes for Crohn’s disease by following healthy individuals who are at a higher risk for developing the disease over time. The closer we come to understanding the causes of Crohn's the closer we come to finding effective treatments, and ultimately, the cure.

If you have been diagnosed with Crohn’s disease or if you have a full sibling and/or parent who has been diagnosed with Crohn’s disease and you are between the ages of 6 and 35, you are invited to participate in this study. If you have symptoms of a gastro-intestinal illness, diabetes, or are pregnant you may not be eligible.

If you have Crohn’s disease

  • Must be diagnosed with Crohn’s disease and allow access to disease information
  • Must have at least one “healthy” child or sibling

If your parent or sibling has Crohn’s disease

  • Must be between the ages of 6-35 years and generally healthy
  • ​Must have a full sibling or parent with Crohn’s disease
  • Cannot be diagnosed with IBD, IBS, Celiac disease or diabetes

To learn more about the GEM Project, and for details on participating in the research, click here.

Research Funding for the GEM Project has been provided by Crohn’s and Colitis Canada and The Leona M. and Harry B. Helmsley Charitable Trust.

  • Canada has among the highest incidence rates of Crohn's and colitis in the world.
  • 1 in 150 Canadians lives with Crohn’s or colitis.
  • Families new to Canada are developing these diseases for the first time.
  • Incidence of Crohn’s in Canadian kids under 10 has doubled since 1995.
  • People are most commonly diagnosed before age 30.

Other Areas of Interest