Unique mother/offspring cohort in which women were recruited antenatally, with detailed phenotypic information on mother and offspring.
Randomised, placebo-controlled, double-blinded, factorial design trial of vitaimin D supplementation and healthy conversations intervention for optimisation of maternal diet, lifestyle, vitamin D status and offspring body composition and bone mass.
The Southampton Initiative for Health was a complex public health intervention developed to address inequalities in diet and lifestyle in disadvantaged women of childbearing age. It was designed in collaboration with Southampton City Council and Southampton Primary Care Trust to assess an empowerment approach in improving the health behaviour of women from disadvantaged backgrounds.
The Pune Maternal Nutrition Study (PMNS) is led by Dr Chittaranjan S Yajnik, Diabetes Research Unit, KEM Hospital, Pune. The cohort was set up prospectively in 1994 in six villages near Pune city. At that time, people’s main livelihood was subsistence agriculture. Since the area was drought-prone and lacked irrigation, malnutrition was common. The women recruited to the PMNS were undernourished and did heavy farming work even when pregnant. Their children (the PMNS Cohort) have been followed up continuously by Dr Yajnik’s team and participated in several in-depth studies of body composition and cardiometabolic risk factors. They are now aged 24 years.
The New Delhi Birth Cohort (NDBC) is led by Dr Santosh Bhargava, Sunderlal Jain Hospital, New Delhi and Dr Harshpal Singh Sachdev, Sitaram Bhartia Institute of Science and Research. New Delhi. Other key investigators are Dr Lakshmi Ramakrishnan and Dr Nikhil Tandon (All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi) and Dr Dorairaj Prabhakaran (Centre for Chronic Disease Control, New Delhi). The cohort was set up prospectively in 1969 in order to study rates of low birth weight and pre-term birth and infant mortality. The babies were followed up throughout childhood and adolescence with measurements of height, weight and head circumference every 6-12 months, measurements which provide an exceptional record of their growth. The first study in adult life, in 1998-2002 at the age of ~30 years, looked at the relationship between childhood growth and adult cardiometabolic risk markers. The cohort is now aged ~50 years and is currently involved in a study of cardiac structure and function, measured using echocardiography (the “INDECHO” study). The New Delhi Birth Cohort is a member of the COHORTS collaboration of 5 birth cohort studies from Brazil, Guatemala, India, The Philippines and South Africa. It also contributes to the NCDRisC collaboration, which monitors global trends in NCDs in >19 million people in >180 countries.
The Vellore Birth Cohort (VBC) is led by Dr Belavendra Antonisamy, Christian Medical College, Vellore. Other key investigators are Dr Nihal Thomas, Dr Viji Samuel, and Dr Geethanjali, Christian Medical College, Vellore. Key collaborators are Dr Fredrik Karpe, Oxford Centre for Endocrinology, Diabetes and metabolism, and Dr Senthil Vasan, MRC LEU. The cohort was set up prospectively in 1969 in order to study rates of low birth weight and pre-term birth and infant mortality and was a ‘twin’ cohort in South India to the New Delhi Birth Cohort. The babies were followed up throughout childhood and adolescence with measurements of height and weight in infancy (1-3 months), childhood (6-8 years) and adolescence (10-15 years). The first study in adult life, in 1998-2002 at the age of ~30 years, looked at the relationship between childhood growth and adult cardiometabolic risk markers. The cohort is now aged ~50 years and is currently involved in a study of cardiac structure and function, measured using echocardiography (the “INDECHO” study).
The Mysore Parthenon Cohort Study is led by Dr GV Krishnaveni, Epidemiology Research Unit, CSI Holdsworth Memorial Hospital, Mysore, South India. It was set up prospectively in 1997-8 to assess the prevalence of gestational diabetes (GDM) and its impact on the children. This mainly urban cohort is now aged ~20 years.
The Mysore Birth Records Cohort is led by Dr K Kumaran, MRC LEU and CSI Holdsworth Memorial Hospital, Mysore, South India. Other key investigators are Dr Murali Krishna, Dr SR Veena and Dr GV Krishnaveni. It comprises men and women born in the Holdsworth Memorial Hospital (HMH), Mysore between 1934 and 1966. They were contacted and recruited into the cohort for the first time as adults in 1993. The Mysore research team conducted a house-to-house survey of the city of Mysore immediately surrounding HMH, looking for adults born in the hospital many decades ago. They were then matched to their birth records, which were preserved in the hospital as far back as 1934. Since 1993, the cohort, now aged between 50 and 85 years has taken part in several research studies linking newborn size to later health outcomes.
The Mumbai Maternal Nutrition Project (MMNP, also known as Project “SARAS”, meaning “excellent”) is led by Dr Ramesh Potdar, Centre for the Study of Social Change (CSSC), Mumbai, India. Other key investigators are Dr Sirazul Ameen Sahariah, Mrs Meera Gandhi and Dr Harsha Chopra, CSSC, Mumbai. Key collaborators are: Dr Giriraj R Chandak, Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology, Hyderabad, and Prof Andrew Prentice and Dr Matt Silver, MRC The Gambia and London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. The Mumbai Maternal Nutrition Project (2006-2012) was a randomised controlled trial of a food-based supplement for women living in slums in the city of Mumbai. Supplementation was started pre-conceptionally and continued until delivery. The children born to these women have been followed up since birth (SARAS KIDS study) and during 2013-2018, body composition (DXA), a range of cardiometabolic risk markers and cognitive function were measured at the age of 5-8 years. Blood samples and buccal swabs were collected for DNA and have been used in the EMPHASIS study to assess effects of maternal supplementation on the child’s DNA methylation. The SARAS KIDS study has, along with other Indian birth cohorts, contributed data to ongoing GWAS studies looking for SNPs associated with newborn size and later cardiometabolic risk markers.
EINSTEIN is led by Dr K Kumaran, MRC LEU and CSI Holdsworth Memorial Hospital, Prof Stephen Matthews, University of Toronto, Canada, and Dr Kumar Gavali, Swami Vivekananda Youth Movement, Mysore. Other key investigators are Dr Prakesh Shah and Dr Daniel Sellen, University of Toronto, Canada; GV Krishnaveni, CSI Holdsworth Memorial Hospital, Mysore, India; Balasubramaniam Iyer, Swami Vivekananda Youth Movement, Mysore; Giriraj R Chandak, Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology, Hyderabad; Prof Caroline Fall, Dr Sarah Kehoe and Prof Mary Barker, MRC LEU. The HeLTI programme is a joint initiative funded by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) and national research funding agencies in India, South Africa and China, in collaboration with the WHO. There are four separate but harmonised intervention studies being implemented in Mysore (India), Soweto (Johannesburg, South Africa), Shanghai (China), and three provinces in Canada. All are based on DOHaD concepts and focus on developing evidence-based multi-faceted interventions that span from preconception across pregnancy and into the postnatal period with the goal of improving maternal, infant and child body composition, cardiometabolic health and neurodevelopment. The Indian study is called EINSTEIN (Early Interventions to Support Trajectories for Healthy Life in India).
Adults aged 50-64 years with questionnaires about working life and health and linkage to anonymised health records.
The international CUPID cohort was incepted in the last quinquennium, coordinated at the MRC LEU. It includes 12,410 workers aged 20-59 years from 47 occupational groups in 18 countries across 5 continents.
During the 1980s, we established a series of longer-term occupational cohort studies to investigate known or suspected cancer hazards. By definition, such cohorts are difficult to incept and very long-term follow-up is required. As a result of careful maintenance, we have analysed data on workers exposed to: formaldehyde, phenoxy herbicides and styrene between 11 and 22 years in total, thereby publishing information vital to regulatory policy and practice not only in the UK but elsewhere
Compelling evidence that raised maternal insulin resistance in pregnancy is associated with an increased risk of obesity, together with impaired neuropsychological development and allergic and respiratory ill-health in children has led to the development of a supplement to reduce insulin resistance. A randomised controlled trial is being established to assess the effect of this supplement administered before and during pregnancy.
Building on the findings of the SWS and other studies that show the need to improve health behaviours before young people embark on their families, LifeLab is an educational programme based around a purpose-built laboratory that opened in September 2013 in Southampton General Hospital. A cluster-randomised trial of 32 schools is being conducted to assess the effectiveness.