Overview: This cohort comprises 2,584 men and women, aged 42-45 years in 2014, who were born in Delhi in 1969-1972 and were measured (weight, height and head circumference) at birth and every six months until the age of 21 years.

Objective: To study the development of cardiometabolic disease in relation to childhood growth, in a cohort representative of a middle-class urban population that has experienced marked socio-economic transition and is at high risk for cardiometabolic disease.

Methods: In 1998-2002 and 2006-2009 at mean ages of 29 and 34 years, data were collected on socio-economic status, lifestyle, anthropometry, blood pressure, glucose tolerance, fasting insulin, inflammatory markers and lipids. In the later follow-up, endothelial function, carotid intima media thickness (cIMT), body composition and bone mass were measured. In the next five years data will be collected on cardiac structure and function using echocardiography, and body composition and risk factors will be re-measured. Prospective investigation of deaths and major events (eg. myocardial infarction) will commence. The New Delhi Birth Cohort is a member of the COHORTS collaboration comprising four other birth cohorts in low- and middle-income countries (Brazil, Guatemala, the Philippines and South Africa) and contributes to the Global Burden of Metabolic Risk Factors collaborating group.

Research output and key findings in the last quinquennium: 16 published papers

  • There was a high incidence of obesity, hypertension, abnormal glucose tolerance and dyslipidaemia in the cohort between 29 and 34 years435
  • Faster childhood BMI gain was associated with an increase in all adult cardiometabolic risk factors, poorer endothelial function and greater cIMT88,746
  • Larger birth size and greater height growth in infancy were associated with higher adult bone mass603
  • With the COHORTS group: larger size at birth and greater height gain during infancy were associated with better adult ‘human capital’ (height, lean body mass, schooling, next generation birthweight) but had no adverse associations with cardiometabolic risk. Greater BMI gain during childhood and adolescence was associated with increased adult cardiometabolic risk factors51,209,236,544,563,665,666
  • With the Global Burden collaborating group: risk factors are rising rapidly in transitioning countries and relationships with socio-demographic factors suggest future epidemics of disease as these countries progress economically311,705