Cohort Profile: the 'children of the 90s'--the index offspring of the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children

Int J Epidemiol. 2013 Feb;42(1):111-27. doi: 10.1093/ije/dys064. Epub 2012 Apr 16.


The Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children (ALSPAC) is a transgenerational prospective observational study investigating influences on health and development across the life course. It considers multiple genetic, epigenetic, biological, psychological, social and other environmental exposures in relation to a similarly diverse range of health, social and developmental outcomes. Recruitment sought to enroll pregnant women in the Bristol area of the UK during 1990-92; this was extended to include additional children eligible using the original enrollment definition up to the age of 18 years. The children from 14541 pregnancies were recruited in 1990-92, increasing to 15247 pregnancies by the age of 18 years. This cohort profile describes the index children of these pregnancies. Follow-up includes 59 questionnaires (4 weeks-18 years of age) and 9 clinical assessment visits (7-17 years of age). The resource comprises a wide range of phenotypic and environmental measures in addition to biological samples, genetic (DNA on 11343 children, genome-wide data on 8365 children, complete genome sequencing on 2000 children) and epigenetic (methylation sampling on 1000 children) information and linkage to health and administrative records. Data access is described in this article and is currently set up as a supported access resource. To date, over 700 peer-reviewed articles have been published using ALSPAC data.

Publication types

  • Historical Article
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Anthropometry
  • Blood Banks
  • Child
  • Child Development*
  • England
  • Environment
  • Female
  • Genome-Wide Association Study
  • Health Behavior
  • Health Status*
  • History, 20th Century
  • Humans
  • Longitudinal Studies*
  • Male
  • Medical Record Linkage
  • Parents*
  • Phenotype
  • Pregnancy
  • Socioeconomic Factors
  • Surveys and Questionnaires