Proposal summaries

These are research proposals that have been approved by the ALSPAC exec. The titles include a B number which identifies the proposal and the date on which the proposals received ALSPAC exec approval.

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B64 - Teenage pregnancy housing and accidents - 01/06/2002

B number: 
B64
Principal applicant name: 
Prof Alan Emond (University of Bristol, UK)
Co-applicants: 
Title of project: 
Teenage pregnancy, housing and accidents.
Proposal summary: 

(No outline received).

Date proposal received: 
Saturday, 1 June, 2002
Date proposal approved: 
Saturday, 1 June, 2002
Keywords: 
Injury, Social Science, Stress, Social Conditions, Pregnancy
Primary keyword: 

B66 - Fellowship no further details on file - 01/06/2002

B number: 
B66
Principal applicant name: 
Prof Matthias Egger (University of Bristol, UK)
Co-applicants: 
Prof Claudia Kuenhi (Universitat Bern, Europe)
Title of project: 
Fellowship (no further details on file).
Proposal summary: 

(No outline received).

Date proposal received: 
Saturday, 1 June, 2002
Date proposal approved: 
Saturday, 1 June, 2002
Keywords: 
Allergies, Respiratory, Atopy
Primary keyword: 

B63 - Issues of risk and resilience in childrens development - 01/05/2002

B number: 
B63
Principal applicant name: 
Dr Sara Meadows (University of Bristol, UK)
Co-applicants: 
Title of project: 
Issues of risk and resilience in children's development.
Proposal summary: 

(No outline received).

Date proposal received: 
Wednesday, 1 May, 2002
Date proposal approved: 
Wednesday, 1 May, 2002
Keywords: 
Autism, Motor Co-ordination, Neurology, Vision, Development
Primary keyword: 

B62 - Eating disorders and motherhood Diet growth and physical activity in the children of mothers with eating disorders - 01/05/2002

B number: 
B62
Principal applicant name: 
Nadia Micali (King's College London, UK)
Co-applicants: 
Dr Abigail Easter (University College London, UK), Prof Janet Treasure (King's College London, UK)
Title of project: 
Eating disorders and motherhood: Diet, growth, and physical activity in the children of mothers with eating disorders.
Proposal summary: 

Aims and Objectives

To determine if children of mothers with eating disorders have different patterns of: physical development, eating habits and levels of physical activity in childhood, compared to children born to women with other psychiatric disorders and control women, using a large longitudinal prospective design (ALSPAC).

Background

Lifestyle choices such as diet and exercise begin to develop at a very early age in life. Parental influences are an important factor in childhood dietary patterns, physical activity, weight and growth [1, 2]. This is a challenge for mothers suffering with eating disorders, who are often unable to appropriately judge and manage their own dietary and exercise needs, therefore leaving their children at risk of developing similar eating pathology.

Diet and Growth

Research suggests that there is a link between early childhood feeding problems and the presence of a maternal eating disorder [3-7]. Infant under nutrition [8] and growth retardation has also been reported in the offspring of women with anorexia nervosa [9]. Furthermore, the rates of conflict at meal times [10, 11] and over concern for their child's weight or shape [5, 12] have found to be higher in mothers with eating disorders.

ALSPAC Studies

A recent study of the ALSPAC data found that infants of women with anorexia nervosa had a heightened risk for feeding difficulties up to six months of age, compared with healthy controls and women with other psychiatric problems [13]. On the other hand, women suffering from bulimia were shown to be associated with accelerated growth rates and being overweight at nine months [13].

Results from studies of obesity within the ALSPAC cohort suggest that there are key factors associated with a risk of childhood obesity, including: parental obesity and early activity patterns [14]. Furthermore, delayed introduction of certain foods has been associated with increased feeding problems[15]. Additionally, ALSPAC results indicate that maternal characteristics such as social, demographic and lifestyle factor have a strong influence on the early eating patterns of their children [16]. Specifically, Ong et al [17] described a marked and prolonged effect of maternal smoking, parity and breast vs. bottle feeding on childhood growth rates.

Physical Activity

Excessive exercise is common in women suffering with eating disorders, however there are very few studies in this area, or indeed the impact that high rates of physical activity in mothers may have on their children. In one of the few studies, Davis (2005) [18] found that parental levels of physical activity were related to their daughters activity levels. In addition, hyperactivity is common in women suffering with anorexia and has been observed in varying rates across studies, ranging from 31-81% of AN cases [19, 20].

Recent evidence, from both animal and human studies [19], suggests that hyperactivity may be a trait in women suffering with eating disorders, which may therefore be linked to increased activity levels in their offspring. This has never been research within an eating disorder population. Furthermore, excessive exercising may be an early warning sign for the development of an eating disorder in children, and as such is an important area of research for early detection and prevention of eating disorders.

Hypothesis under investigation:

1) Children born to mothers with anorexia nervosa will eat less and be leaner in childhood compared to children born to control mothers.

2) Children of mothers with bulimia nervosa will be heavier than average in childhood, they will have a tendency to eat more and to eat "snacky"-type foods in childhood.

3) Children of mothers with anorexia will have higher levels of physical activity than healthy controls, and children of women with other psychiatric problems and women with bulimia.

Methodology

Design: A longitudinal prospective study with contrast groups

Participants: This study is based on data collected from the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children (ALSPAC) 21. ALSPAC is a longitudinal birth cohort study, which enrolled all pregnant women living with-in Avon, England, who were due to deliver their baby between the 1st April 1991 and 31st December 1992. It is estimated that approximately 85-90% of those eligible for inclusion chose to take part and the sample has been shown to be representative of the UK population. The core ALSPAC sample consists of 14,541 pregnancies, 69 of which had unknown birth outcomes. Data was obtained on the remaining 14,272 via postal questionnaires.

For the purpose of this study women will be excluded if they did not respond to the 12 week questionnaire (2,019) or if they had multiple births (208). The remaining 12,254 women are included in the analysis. Of this sample, 171 (1.4%) responded that they had anorexia, 199 (1.6%) reported having bulimia, 82 (0.7%) reported having had anorexia and bulimia and 1,166 (9.5%) reported having had another psychiatric problem. The remaining 10,636 (86.8%) reported no history or current psychiatric problem.

Outcomes: At 12 weeks gestation participants were asked if they had any recent or past psychiatric disorder including depression, schizophrenia, anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa. Eating disorder behaviours and attitudes pre and during pregnancy were collected by self report. Socio-demographic data, including smoking, age, occupation, marital status was also obtained via self report. At 18 weeks gestation women were asked if their pregnancy was intentional and if so how long they had been trying to conceive as well as their reactions to pregnancy.

Children have been followed up yearly and data are available on their physical development (body composition), activity levels, and diet up to the age of 11 years.

Data Analysis: The hypotheses will be tested using linear and logistic regression analyses in which maternal eating disorders are used to predict outcomes in childhood. All of the central analyses will include covariates. Data available at several time-points will be initially analysed cross-sectionally; longitudinal and growth modelling will be used as a subsequent step. With the available sample sizes, small to moderate group differences in continuous outcomes can be detected with a power of 90% at the 5% test level. Group differences in proportions amounting to odd ratios above 6 could also be detected with a 90% chance. Data will be analysed taking into account missing data.

REFERENCES

1. Klesges RC, Coates TJ, Brown G, Sturgeon-Tillisch J, Moldenhauer-Klesges LM, Holzer B, et al. Parental influences on children's eating behavior and relative weight. Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis 1983;16(4):371-8.

2. Lopez-Dicastillo O, Grande G, Callery P. Parents' contrasting views on diet versus activity of children: Implications for health promotion and obesity prevention. Patient Education and Counseling 2009.

3. Steiner H, Smith C, Rosenkranz RT, Litt I. The early care and feeding of anorexics. Child Psychiatry and Human Development 1991;21(3):163-7.

4. Agras S, Hammer L, McNicholas F. A prospective study of the influence of eating-disordered mothers on their children. International Journal of Eating Disorders 1999;25(3):253-62.

5. Stein A, Fairburn CG. Children of mothers with bulimia nervosa. British Medical Journal 1989;299(6702):777-8.

6. Stein A, Woolley H, Murray L, Cooper P, Cooper S, Noble F, et al. Influence of psychiatric disorder on the controlling behaviour of mothers with 1-year-old infants. A study of women with maternal eating disorder, postnatal depression and a healthy comparison group. British Journal of Psychiatry 2001;179:157-62.

7. Jacobi C, Agras WS, Hammer L. Predicting children's reported eating disturbances at 8 years of age. Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry 2001;40(3):364-72.

8. Russell GF, Treasure J, Eisler I. Mothers with anorexia nervosa who underfeed their children: their recognition and management. Psychological Medicine 1998;28(1):93-108.

9. van Wezel-Meijler G, Wit JM. The offspring of mothers with anorexia nervosa: a high-risk group for undernutrition and stunting? European Journal of Pediatrics 1989;149(2):130-5.

10. Stein A, Woolley H, Cooper SD, Fairburn CG. An observational study of mothers with eating disorders and their infants. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry and Allied Disciplines 1994;35(4):733-48.

11. Stein A, Woolley H, McPherson K. Conflict between mothers with eating disorders and their infants during mealtimes. British Journal of Psychiatry 1999;175:455-61.

12. Fahy T, Treasure J. Children of mothers with bulimia nervosa. BMJ 1989;299(6706):1031.

13. Micali N, Simonoff E, Treasure J. Infant feeding and weight in the first year of life in babies of women with eating disorders. Journal of Pediatrics 2009;154(1):55-60 e1.

14. Reilly JJ, Armstrong J, Dorosty AR, Emmett PM, Ness A, Rogers I, et al. Early life risk factors for obesity in childhood: cohort study. BMJ 2005;330(7504):1357.

15. Coulthard H, Harris G, Emmett P. Delayed introduction of lumpy foods to children during the complementary feeding period affects child's food acceptance and feeding at 7 years of age. Maternal and Child Nutrition 2009;5(1):75-85.

16. North Stone K, Fleming P, Golding J. Socio-demographic associations with digit and pacifier sucking at 15 months of age and possible associations with infant infection. The ALSPAC Study Team. Avon Longitudinal Study of Pregnancy and Childhood. Early Human Development 2000;60(2):137-48.

17. Ong KK, Elmlinger M, Jones R, Emmett P, Holly J, Ranke MB, et al. Growth hormone binding protein levels in children are associated with birth weight, postnatal weight gain, and insulin secretion. Metabolism: Clinical and Experimental 2007;56(10):1412-7.

18. Davis C, Blackmore E, Katzman DK, Fox J. Female adolescents with anorexia nervosa and their parents: a case-control study of exercise attitudes and behaviours.Psychological Medicine 2005;35(3):377-86.

19. Hebebrand J, Exner C, Hebebrand K, Holtkamp C, Casper RC, Remschmidt H, et al.Hyperactivity in patients with anorexia nervosa and in semistarved rats: evidence for a pivotal role of hypoleptinemia. Physiology and Behavior 2003;79(1):25-37.

20. Hillebrand JJ, Kas MJ, van Elburg AA, Hoek HW, Adan RA. Leptin's effect on hyperactivity: potential downstream effector mechanisms. Physiology and Behavior 2008;94(5):689-95.

21. Golding J, Pembrey M, Jones R. ALSPAC--the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children. I. Study methodology. Paediatric and Perinatal Epidemiology 2001;15(1):74-87.

Date proposal received: 
Wednesday, 1 May, 2002
Date proposal approved: 
Wednesday, 1 May, 2002
Keywords: 
Diet, Eating disorders, Eating Disorder, Growth, Physical Activity
Primary keyword: 

B60 - Epidemiology of childrens dysphonia - 01/03/2002

B number: 
B60
Principal applicant name: 
Prof Susan Roulstone (University of the West of England (UWE), Bristol)
Co-applicants: 
Title of project: 
Epidemiology of children's dysphonia.
Proposal summary: 

(No outline received).

Date proposal received: 
Friday, 1 March, 2002
Date proposal approved: 
Friday, 1 March, 2002
Keywords: 
Speech & Language
Primary keyword: 

B59 - Handedness and exposure to diagnostic ultrasound in utero - 01/03/2002

B number: 
B59
Principal applicant name: 
Prof Francis Duck (University of Bath, UK)
Co-applicants: 
Title of project: 
Handedness and exposure to diagnostic ultrasound in utero.
Proposal summary: 

(No outline received).

Date proposal received: 
Friday, 1 March, 2002
Date proposal approved: 
Friday, 1 March, 2002
Keywords: 
Autism, Motor Co-ordination, Neurology, Vision, Handedness
Primary keyword: 

B280 - Gene/environment and gene/gene interactions in childhood conduct disorder and ADHD in a large longitudinally studied child cohort gene/environment and gene/gene interactions in anxiety/dysphoria in ALSPAC children - 01/03/2002

B number: 
B280
Principal applicant name: 
D Goldman (Not used 0, Not used 0)
Co-applicants: 
Title of project: 
Gene/environment and gene/gene interactions in childhood conduct disorder and ADHD in a large, longitudinally studied child cohort (gene/environment and gene/gene interactions in anxiety/dysphoria in ALSPAC children.
Proposal summary: 

This is a gene-environment and gene-gene interaction study in a longitudinal child cohort to investigate the role in childhood behavioural problems of abundant functional polymorphisms that have previously been linked to aggression and ADHD.

Date proposal received: 
Friday, 1 March, 2002
Date proposal approved: 
Friday, 1 March, 2002
Keywords: 
Mental Health, Genes, ADHD
Primary keyword: 

B58 - Social variation in obesity and cardiovascular risk factors - 01/02/2002

B number: 
B58
Principal applicant name: 
Dr Imogen Rogers (University of Brighton, Brighton)
Co-applicants: 
Title of project: 
Social variation in obesity and cardiovascular risk factors.
Proposal summary: 

(No outline received).

Date proposal received: 
Friday, 1 February, 2002
Date proposal approved: 
Friday, 1 February, 2002
Keywords: 
Endocrine, Growth, Obesity, Weight, Cardiovascular , Social Science, Stress, Social Conditions
Primary keyword: 

B57 - Taste test in ALSPAC - 01/02/2002

B number: 
B57
Principal applicant name: 
Prof Jean Golding (University of Bristol, UK)
Co-applicants: 
Title of project: 
Taste test in ALSPAC.
Proposal summary: 

(No outline received).

Date proposal received: 
Friday, 1 February, 2002
Date proposal approved: 
Friday, 1 February, 2002
Keywords: 
Autism, Motor Co-ordination, Neurology, Vision
Primary keyword: 

B56 - Modelling risk and resilience in the relationship between language development behaviour and reading through to 8 years an exploration of the ALSPAC data set - 01/02/2002

B number: 
B56
Principal applicant name: 
Dr Jennifer Law (Durham University, UK)
Co-applicants: 
Title of project: 
Modelling risk and resilience in the relationship between language development, behaviour and reading through to 8 years: an exploration of the ALSPAC data set.
Proposal summary: 

(No outline received).

Date proposal received: 
Friday, 1 February, 2002
Date proposal approved: 
Friday, 1 February, 2002
Keywords: 
Speech & Language
Primary keyword: 

B55 - Studies of gene 216 in relation to asthma - 01/02/2002

B number: 
B55
Principal applicant name: 
Prof John Holloway (University of Southampton, UK)
Co-applicants: 
Title of project: 
Studies of gene 216 in relation to asthma.
Proposal summary: 

(No outline received).

Date proposal received: 
Friday, 1 February, 2002
Date proposal approved: 
Friday, 1 February, 2002
Keywords: 
Allergies, Genetics, Respiratory, Atopy, Asthma, Genes
Primary keyword: 

B54 - What are the genetic and environmental determinants of open angle glaucoma in a UK population - 01/02/2002

B number: 
B54
Principal applicant name: 
Miss Cathy E M Williams (University of Bristol, UK)
Co-applicants: 
Title of project: 
What are the genetic and environmental determinants of open angle glaucoma in a UK population?
Proposal summary: 

(No outline received).

Date proposal received: 
Friday, 1 February, 2002
Date proposal approved: 
Friday, 1 February, 2002
Keywords: 
Autism, Genetics, Motor Co-ordination, Neurology, Vision, Environmental Exposure
Primary keyword: 

B299 - ALSPAC data of particular relevance to economists - 01/01/2002

B number: 
B299
Principal applicant name: 
Prof Carol Propper (Imperial College London, UK)
Co-applicants: 
Title of project: 
ALSPAC data of particular relevance to economists.
Proposal summary: 

(No outline received).

Date proposal received: 
Tuesday, 1 January, 2002
Date proposal approved: 
Tuesday, 1 January, 2002
Keywords: 
Economics, Social Conditions
Primary keyword: 

B51 - Investigation of low bone mass to fractures in childhood - 01/01/2002

B number: 
B51
Principal applicant name: 
Dr Emma Margaret Clark (Royal National Hospital for Rheumatic Disease, UK)
Co-applicants: 
Prof Andy Ness (University of Bristol, UK)
Title of project: 
Investigation of low bone mass to fractures in childhood.
Proposal summary: 

The broad aim of this project is to study the determinants of fracture risk in children using the ALSPAC cohort. ALSPAC is a large and unique dataset that recruited all pregnant women resident in Avon between April 1991 and December 1992. This has resulted in 14,000 children of whom 10,000 are under active follow-up. ALSPAC has comprehensive information from early pregnancy to now. From the time of the child's birth, many different aspects have been measured and collected on an annual basis. At aged 9, all children are undergoing a dual energy X-ray absorptiometry (DXA) to assess their bone mass.

This project has 4 specific aims: (1) to examine the association between bone mass measured at 9 years of age and fracture risk over the the following 2 years; (2) to examine the association between potential risk factors that are thought to affect fractures independently of bone mass (e.g. participation in sporting activities); (3) to examine the association between early life factors that are thought to effect bone accretion and subsequent peak bone mass, and lifetime fracture risk at aged 11 years (e.g. breastfeeding); and (4) to examine the association between possible endocrine determinants of early life growth (such as cord blood leptin) and lifetime fracture risk at aged 11.

Date proposal received: 
Tuesday, 1 January, 2002
Date proposal approved: 
Tuesday, 1 January, 2002
Keywords: 
Bones
Primary keyword: 

B50 - Monogenic and polygenic influences on human fetal growth and development - 01/01/2002

B number: 
B50
Principal applicant name: 
Prof Andrew Hattersley (University of Exeter, UK)
Co-applicants: 
Title of project: 
Monogenic and polygenic influences on human fetal growth and development.
Proposal summary: 

(No outline received).

Date proposal received: 
Tuesday, 1 January, 2002
Date proposal approved: 
Tuesday, 1 January, 2002
Keywords: 
Genetics, Growth, Obstetrics, Pregnancy, Fetal Growth
Primary keyword: 

B48 - Using human deciduous tooth enamel to measure prenatal exposure to trace elements and heavy metals - a new tool for epidemiology and fetal origins research - 01/01/2002

B number: 
B48
Principal applicant name: 
Prof Seif Shaheen (King's College London, UK)
Co-applicants: 
Prof John Henderson (University of Bristol, UK), Prof Andy Ness (University of Bristol, UK)
Title of project: 
Using human deciduous tooth enamel to measure prenatal exposure to trace elements and heavy metals - a new tool for epidemiology and fetal origins research?
Proposal summary: 

Whilst the main aim is to study asthma, we will also investigate relations with related respiratory and atopic outcomes, namely lung function, bronchial hyper-responsiveness, atopy, rhinitis and eczema.

Date proposal received: 
Tuesday, 1 January, 2002
Date proposal approved: 
Tuesday, 1 January, 2002
Keywords: 
Allergies, Biological Samples, Respiratory, Atopy, Teeth
Primary keyword: 

B296 - 1 The association of infant nutrition on childhood growth body composition 2 The association of infant nutrition on plasma lipid profile blood pressure in childhood - 01/01/2002

B number: 
B296
Principal applicant name: 
Prof Richard Martin (University of Bristol, UK)
Co-applicants: 
Title of project: 
(1) The association of infant nutrition on childhood growth & body composition (2) The association of infant nutrition on plasma lipid profile & blood pressure in childhood.
Proposal summary: 

(No outline received).

Date proposal received: 
Tuesday, 1 January, 2002
Date proposal approved: 
Tuesday, 1 January, 2002
Keywords: 
Blood Pressure, Growth, Nutrition
Primary keyword: 

B47 - Antecedents of attention deficit and hyperactive behaviour in childhood - 01/12/2001

B number: 
B47
Principal applicant name: 
Prof Jean Golding (University of Bristol, UK)
Co-applicants: 
Prof Dieter Wolke (University of Bristol, UK)
Title of project: 
Antecedents of attention deficit and hyperactive behaviour in childhood.
Proposal summary: 

The specific aims of this study are twofold: 1) to define and concurrently describe sub-groups of ADHD according to DSM-IV criteria based on parent and teacher report measures at 8 years of age. 2) to identify the factors from pregnancy through infancy, preschool and early school years that predict ADHD and test whether these are similar or different for three subtypes of ADHD and for boths sexes.

The proposed study will thus identify the affected children and provide an empirically tested model of the relevant environmental factors that increase the risk for or protect against ADHD. This information, highly relevant for developing effective preventative models. will furthermore provide the basis for future groundbreaking research at the molecular level, testing for gene-environment interactions (to be applied for separately). This will be possible due to recent developments in pinpointing promising candidate genes (Zametkin et al., 2001) and the fact that ALSPAC has DNA on 10,000 of the children and most of their mothers. Samples of paternal DNA are planned for the future.

Date proposal received: 
Saturday, 1 December, 2001
Date proposal approved: 
Saturday, 1 December, 2001
Keywords: 
ADHD, Antisocial Behaviour
Primary keyword: 

B46 - The influence of diet physical activity levels and body composition on age at menarche in a contemporary cohort - 01/12/2001

B number: 
B46
Principal applicant name: 
Dr Imogen Roberts (University of Bristol, UK)
Co-applicants: 
Title of project: 
The influence of diet, physical activity levels and body composition on age at menarche in a contemporary cohort.
Proposal summary: 

To collect comprehensive information about diet in around 5000 10 year-old girls.

To collect anthropometric measurements by standard methods from around 5000 girls at age 10.

To obtain comprehensive information about physical activity patterns from around 5000 girls at age 10.

To obtain information on menarcheal status and pubertal stage from around 5000 girls up to age 12.5.

To relate dietary intakes and physical activty patterns to pubertal and menarcheal status.

Date proposal received: 
Saturday, 1 December, 2001
Date proposal approved: 
Saturday, 1 December, 2001
Keywords: 
Diet, Physical Activity, Puberty
Primary keyword: 

B45 - Herbalism and homeopathic medication - 01/11/2001

B number: 
B45
Principal applicant name: 
Prof Edzard Ernst (University of Exeter, UK)
Co-applicants: 
Title of project: 
Herbalism and homeopathic medication
Proposal summary: 

(No outline received).

Date proposal received: 
Thursday, 1 November, 2001
Date proposal approved: 
Thursday, 1 November, 2001
Keywords: 
Drugs
Primary keyword: 

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