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.

Click here to export results in Word format.

B338 - Eating Disorders - 17/01/2006

B number: 
B338
Principal applicant name: 
Dr Kapil Sayal (University of Nottingham, UK)
Co-applicants: 
Title of project: 
Eating Disorders.
Proposal summary: 

(No outline received).

Date proposal received: 
Tuesday, 17 January, 2006
Date proposal approved: 
Tuesday, 17 January, 2006
Keywords: 
Diet, Eating Disorder
Primary keyword: 

B337 - Dyslexia and Substance Misuse - 07/01/2006

B number: 
B337
Principal applicant name: 
Dr Marianne van den Bree (University of Cardiff, UK)
Co-applicants: 
Title of project: 
Dyslexia and Substance Misuse.
Proposal summary: 

(No outline received).

Date proposal received: 
Thursday, 5 January, 2006
Date proposal approved: 
Saturday, 7 January, 2006
Keywords: 
Substance Use, Dyslexia
Primary keyword: 

B336 - A pilot study to establish the reliability of parental targeted video material for studies of social communication in early childhood - 07/01/2006

B number: 
B336
Principal applicant name: 
Dr Phil Wilson (Not used 0, Not used 0)
Co-applicants: 
Title of project: 
A pilot study to establish the reliability of parental targeted video material for studies of social communication in early childhood.
Proposal summary: 

The study team have been granted access to video data from the ALSPAC Children in Focus study. This sub-cohort consists of over 1000 children, most of whom were videoed with one or both parents using the Thorpe Interactive Measure, in which parents are asked to look at a book with their infants.

Almost all of these children had a psychiatric assessment (the DAWBA) at age 91 months. The cases are:

* 18 with ADHD,

* 32 with oppositional-defiant or conduct disorder,

* Six with pervasive development disorder (PDD)

* 26 with one or more anxiety disorders

* Five with a depressive disorder

There will be two controls per case, picked to be frequency matched on age (corrected for gestation) and gender.

This adds up to 261 videos to be analysed. As far as we know this is a unique dataset potentially allowing assessment of early behavioural predictors of child neuropsychiatric and psychiatric conditions. Our team have already developed techniques for detailed behavioural analysis of video material and have the necessary software and hardware.

Date proposal received: 
Saturday, 7 January, 2006
Date proposal approved: 
Saturday, 7 January, 2006
Keywords: 
ADHD, Antisocial Behaviour, Communication, Speech & Language, Social Science
Primary keyword: 

B307 - Home Office - 06/01/2006

B number: 
B307
Principal applicant name: 
Dr Erica Bowen (University of Bristol, UK)
Co-applicants: 
Title of project: 
Home Office.
Proposal summary: 

The parental criminality data were sent in two questionnaires - one to eachparent, when the child was 12 years of age. So far no other collaboratorshave provided funding for this data to be collected, prepared and filesbuilt for use.

Date proposal received: 
Friday, 6 January, 2006
Date proposal approved: 
Friday, 6 January, 2006
Keywords: 
Miscellaneous
Primary keyword: 

B305 - Physical Activity and Childhood Obesity CONTINUATION of B0028 - 05/01/2006

B number: 
B305
Principal applicant name: 
Prof Chris Riddoch (University of Bath, UK)
Co-applicants: 
Title of project: 
Physical Activity and Childhood Obesity (CONTINUATION of B0028).
Proposal summary: 

We propose in this competing continuation to extend our current project examining the association between physical activity and obesity within ALSPAC by repeating the objective physical activity measures at age 15. These extended measurements will allow us to further explore the associations between physical activity, obesity and CVD risk factors prospectively in this large contemporary population-based study of children.The 15-year clinic has started (October 2006) and we are managing to collect collecting data during this interim period using our existing resources from the original grant (staff, equipment, etc). If we are unsuccessful with the renewal application we will cease measurements when the current grant ends (May 2007).

Date proposal received: 
Thursday, 5 January, 2006
Date proposal approved: 
Thursday, 5 January, 2006
Keywords: 
Endocrine, Growth, Obesity, Physical Activity, Weight
Primary keyword: 

B304 - Investigation of Relationship Between Habitual Levels of Physical Activity - 05/01/2006

B number: 
B304
Principal applicant name: 
Dr Jon Tobias (University of Bristol, UK)
Co-applicants: 
Title of project: 
Investigation of Relationship Between Habitual Levels of Physical Activity.
Proposal summary: 

Exercise interventions are known to stimulate bone mass acquisition in childhood. However, it is unclear whether low levels of physical activity to which children in the UK are generally exposed also affect bone development. Whether physical activity affects biomechanical strength of the skeleton, thereby reducing the risk of fractures in later life, is also uncertain. We recently found a positive relationship between habitual levels of physical activity as assessed by accelerometer recording, and total body bone mineral content as measured by DXA, in 4457 11-year-old children from the unique Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children birth cohort. Equivalent associations were observed for height-adjusted bone area, suggesting that physical activity may affect cortical geometry and hence biomechanical strength of the skeleton. To test this hypothesis, we will examine prospectively the relationship between physical activity at age 11, 13 and 15, and cortical geometry parameters derived from pQCT measurements of the tibia at age 15. We will also examine interactions between physical activity, cortical geometry, fat mass and lean mass, based on our recent observation that the relationship between physical activity and total body DXA parameters is modified by body composition.

Date proposal received: 
Thursday, 5 January, 2006
Date proposal approved: 
Thursday, 5 January, 2006
Keywords: 
Physical Activity, Physical Fitness
Primary keyword: 

B303 - Maternal over-nutrition and offspring fat mass and vascular function - 05/01/2006

B number: 
B303
Principal applicant name: 
Prof Debbie A Lawlor (University of Bristol, UK)
Co-applicants: 
Title of project: 
Maternal over-nutrition and offspring fat mass and vascular function.
Proposal summary: 

The fetal over-nutrition hypothesis suggests that mothers who are overweight, gain weight rapidly during pregnancy, have high energy diets and those with on averagehigher glucose, insulin and lipid levels (even in the absence of diagnosed gestational diabetes or lipid abnormalities) programme their offspring to become overweight/obese and have vascular and metabolic problems later in life.If this hypothesis is correct then it would have major public health consequences since overweight/obese mothers would programme their offspring to be overweight/obese and have poor vascular and metabolic function; for their female offspring this would mean that they similarly went into their pregnancies overweight and with relatively high glucose and lipid levels, and would thus do the same with their offspring.Consequently, it is feared that if this hypothesis is true then interventions to reduce the obesity epidemic will fail to have any population impact for many generations.Despite this concern there is little high quality research that has attempted to test this hypothesis. Work in animal models demonstrate proof of principle,but may not be generalisable to humans. The small number of studies undertaken in humans have failed to use robust methods for demonstrating a specific intrauterine effect, as opposed to shared familial (environmental or genetic) effects, and have failed to adequately control for potential confounding factors.

Date proposal received: 
Thursday, 5 January, 2006
Date proposal approved: 
Thursday, 5 January, 2006
Keywords: 
Endocrine, Growth, Obesity, Weight, Birth Outcomes
Primary keyword: 

B301 - Data for Local Public Health Practitioners - 04/01/2006

B number: 
B301
Principal applicant name: 
Dr Ruth Kipping (University of Bristol, UK)
Co-applicants: 
Title of project: 
Data for Local Public Health Practitioners.
Proposal summary: 

(No outline received).

Date proposal received: 
Wednesday, 4 January, 2006
Date proposal approved: 
Wednesday, 4 January, 2006
Keywords: 
Endocrine, Growth, Obesity, Weight, Cross Cohort Study
Primary keyword: 

B300 - Growth Related effects in ALSPAC on Cardiac Endpoints GRACE - 04/01/2006

B number: 
B300
Principal applicant name: 
Prof Alun Hughes (Imperial College London, UK)
Co-applicants: 
Prof Nishi Chaturvedi (Imperial College London, UK)
Title of project: 
Growth Related effects in ALSPAC on Cardiac Endpoints (GRACE).
Proposal summary: 

Obesity in children is on the increase, and is associated with heart enlargement. This could be due to increases in the load on the heart, although abnormal nervous control of the heart or altered arterial function could also contribute. Low birthweight children, who exhibit accelerated growth through childhood, may be particularly affected. We will use non-invasive techniques to examine heart and arterial structure and function in 2500 fifteen year olds who have been part of a detailed study of growth since birth. This will help us understand why obesity results in heart disease, and why adolescents who have grown rapidly in childhood are at particular risk.

Date proposal received: 
Wednesday, 4 January, 2006
Date proposal approved: 
Wednesday, 4 January, 2006
Keywords: 
Endocrine, Growth, Obesity, Weight, Cardiovascular
Primary keyword: 

B326 - ESRC Scoping project -Depositing of defined ALSPAC data sets with the UK Survey Archive - 01/01/2006

B number: 
B326
Principal applicant name: 
Mr David Carmichael (University of Bristol, UK)
Co-applicants: 
Prof George Davey Smith (University of Bristol, UK), Dr Leon Feinstein (Institute of Education, University of London, UK), Prof Jean Golding (University of Bristol, UK), Prof Paul Gregg (University of Bath, UK)
Title of project: 
ESRC Scoping project -Depositing of defined ALSPAC data sets with the UK Survey Archive.
Proposal summary: 

This proposal has two functions: (1) to prepare 6 data sets for deposit in the Archive with appropriate documentation

(Phase 1), (2) to document other data sets and calculate the relevant costing for future data deposition (Phase 2). It is

hoped that subsequent use by the social science community will prove the worth of the first 6 data sets in regard to both

analyses across cohorts, and also over time within the ALSPAC population.

Date proposal received: 
Sunday, 1 January, 2006
Date proposal approved: 
Sunday, 1 January, 2006
Keywords: 
Social Science, Stress, Social Conditions
Primary keyword: 

B278 - Identification of genetic roots of coronary artery disease by combining stepwise genome wide association studies with trascriptomic and functional genomic investigation of relevant genetic variants - 01/12/2005

B number: 
B278
Principal applicant name: 
Prof Nilesh Samani (University of Leicester, UK)
Co-applicants: 
Title of project: 
Identification of genetic roots of coronary artery disease by combining stepwise genome wide association studies with trascriptomic and functional genomic investigation of relevant genetic variants,
Proposal summary: 

The main scientific and technological objectives of this highly focused RTD project are:

* to carry out well-integrated genome-wide and functional genomics research in order:

o to identify genetic risk markers for CAD

o to link these with transcriptome data and cellular function in atherosclerosis

o to discover new candidates and systems for drug development

o to exploit Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) in partnership with SMEs and the pharmaceutical industry

o to develop integrated novel information systems

* to establish a world-leading European consortium on the basis of genuine and equal partnership between leading clinical centres, academic groups, cell biologists, bioinformaticians and biostatisticians to provide further knowledge into the genetic basis of CAD for the benefit of members of the European Community.

Date proposal received: 
Thursday, 1 December, 2005
Date proposal approved: 
Thursday, 1 December, 2005
Keywords: 
Cardiovascular , Genetics
Primary keyword: 

B276 - The use of homeopathic products in childhood - 01/12/2005

B number: 
B276
Principal applicant name: 
Dr Elizabeth Thompson (University Hospitals Bristol NHS Foundation Trust, Bristol)
Co-applicants: 
Title of project: 
The use of homeopathic products in childhood.
Proposal summary: 

(No outline received).

Date proposal received: 
Thursday, 1 December, 2005
Date proposal approved: 
Thursday, 1 December, 2005
Keywords: 
Primary keyword: 

B268 - The environmental determinants of refractive error - 01/11/2005

B number: 
B268
Principal applicant name: 
Miss Cathy E M Williams (University of Bristol, UK)
Co-applicants: 
Title of project: 
The environmental determinants of refractive error.
Proposal summary: 

To test already postulated relationships between the environmental exposures and refractive error development in the ALSPAC cohort, using existing data (non-cycloplegic autorefraction

To obtain axial length measurements on the ALSPAC cohort of childrenat the age of 15 and use these data to confirm/modify the results from phase

To carry out cross cohort comparisons with another cohort study that is dedicated to the development of myopia (the Singapore Cohort study Of Risk factors for MyopiA- SCORM) and has comparable, wide-ranging data.

Date proposal received: 
Tuesday, 1 November, 2005
Date proposal approved: 
Tuesday, 1 November, 2005
Keywords: 
Environmental
Primary keyword: 

B267 - Wellcome Advanced Training Fellowship - 01/11/2005

B number: 
B267
Principal applicant name: 
Dr Imogen Rogers (University of Brighton, Brighton)
Co-applicants: 
Title of project: 
Wellcome Advanced Training Fellowship.
Proposal summary: 

(No outline received).

Date proposal received: 
Tuesday, 1 November, 2005
Date proposal approved: 
Tuesday, 1 November, 2005
Keywords: 
Miscellaneous
Primary keyword: 

B356 - Schools Project Extension - 01/11/2005

B number: 
B356
Principal applicant name: 
Mr Stephen Witt (Department of Children, Families and Schools, London, UK)
Co-applicants: 
Title of project: 
Schools Project Extension.
Proposal summary: 

The aim of the ALSPAC study is to identify the biological, physical, genetic, psychological and pedagogical factors that influence health and development. The Department's contributions are to ensure that the study also covers the following key social and educational research themes:

1. the engagement of young people with learning

2. 14-19 system reform and the learning pathways and experience of 15-17 year olds

3. sub-group differences in achievement, social engagement and attitudes to learning and employment

4. wider skills and attributes: academic, psychological, behavioural and personal development

5. the relative influences of families, schools, peers and cultural values on decisions, behaviour and engagement at 16/17

Date proposal received: 
Tuesday, 1 November, 2005
Date proposal approved: 
Tuesday, 1 November, 2005
Keywords: 
Education
Primary keyword: 

B275 - Fish consumption mercury omega-3 fatty acids and neurocognitive outcomes - 01/11/2005

B number: 
B275
Principal applicant name: 
Capt Joseph Hibbeln (National Institutes of Health, USA)
Co-applicants: 
Prof Jean Golding (University of Bristol, UK), Dr Norman Salem (National Institutes of Health, USA)
Title of project: 
Fish consumption, mercury, omega-3 fatty acids and neurocognitive outcomes.
Proposal summary: 

The relative risks of potentially toxic compounds found in seafood compared to the potentially beneficial nutrients rich in seafood is a significant public health issue and has been the subject of an US Federal Advisory in 2004, which limits seafood in pregnancy. A major impetus for conducting this research is the finding from the ALSPAC cohort that compliance with this advisory appears to be associated with greater risks of the specific harms (e.g. suboptimal verbal development) it was designed to prevent. This prior analysis, conducted as a collaboration between LMBB/NIAAA/ NIH and ALSPAC, compared dietary intakes during pregnancy estimated by food frequency questionnaire data, to childhood developmental outcome data. The findings of lower than expected verbal IQ and other suboptimal outcomes such as poor fine motor development and adverse socialization among the cohort, do not appear to be attributable to confounding variables. This increased risk of suboptimal developmental outcomes may be due to deficiencies in nutrients uniquely rich in seafood, potentially the long chain omega-3 fatty acids eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acids (DHA). Several lines of evidence indicate that insufficient dietary intakes of EPA and DHA increase the risk of neurodevelopmental impairments. Among these are that DHA is selectively concentrated into neuronal tissues and the proliferation of neuronal dendrites and synapses is substantially enhanced by DHA. Since the main source of DHA-EPA for humans comes from the dietary intake of fish & seafood (or fish oil dietary supplements) the evaluation of food frequency data from the ALSPAC cohort indicates that pregnant women need a sufficient intake of DHA-EPA in order to prevent increasing risk of suboptimal outcomes among their offspring. Another nutrient uniquely rich in seafood, selenium has a protective effect against mercury in utero in animal experiments. As selenium is fairly high in most marine fish/seafood, there could be a natural offsetting of the dietary ingestion of methylmercury present in marine fish/seafood versus the selenium present in the marine fish/seafood. Selenium is thought to bind with and detoxify methyl-mercury and a greater ratio of methyl-mercury to selenium is thought to indicate that the primary protective mechanism against methyl-mercury toxicity has been overwhelmed. However, the impact of this relationship in humans needs to be evaluated as previous research on mercury or methylmercury may be inherently flawed as selenium was not simultaneously considered with the mercury.

Date proposal received: 
Tuesday, 1 November, 2005
Date proposal approved: 
Tuesday, 1 November, 2005
Keywords: 
Nutrition, Cognition
Primary keyword: 

B273 - An ESRC Centre An examination of the impact of family socio-economic status on outcomes in late childhood and adolescence - 01/11/2005

B number: 
B273
Principal applicant name: 
Prof Paul Gregg (University of Bristol, UK)
Co-applicants: 
Prof Simon Burgess (University of Bristol, UK), Prof Debbie A Lawlor (University of Bristol, UK), Prof Carol Propper (University of Bristol, UK), Prof Frank Windmeijer (University of Bristol, UK), Prof George Davey Smith (University of Bristol, UK), Prof Fiona Steele (University of Bristol, UK), Prof Jonathan Sterne (University of Bristol, UK), Prof Andy Ness (University of Bristol, UK), Dr Leon Feinstein (Institute of Education, University of London, UK), Prof Glyn Lewis (University of Bristol, UK), Prof Marcus Munafo (University of Bristol, UK)
Title of project: 
An ESRC Centre: An examination of the impact of family socio-economic status on outcomes in late childhood and adolescence.
Proposal summary: 

To chart the relationship of these outcomes with socio-economic status of the family of origin of a large population

based sample of young people currently living in the UK.

To understand the complementarities between different aspects of children's and adolescent's lives at one point of time

and across time, examining lives from birth to adolescence.

To study the pathways by which socio-economic status of parents affects outcomes for their children. These pathways

include the role of peer groups, friendships and neighbourhoods; schools; psychological motivations; parental mental

health; family (mal)functioning and parental behaviours early in children's lives.

To compare the development of current adolescents in the UK with their US counterparts and those in the UK of earlier

generations.

To undertake methodological innovation in the analysis of large scale survey data, including the estimation of nonnested

hierarchial data; the analysis of the impact of missing data and the use of imputation techniques; and the

exploration of the use of biomedical, including genetic, information as instruments for observed outcomes in early/middle

childhood.

To disseminate our research to the academic community in a wide range of disciplines; to inform policy makers and aid

the development of information based policy in the fields of child and adolescent development, family, educational and

neighbourhood policy; and to achieve a step change in the usage of the unique Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and

Children (ALSPAC) data resource within the social science community in the UK and overseas.

Date proposal received: 
Tuesday, 1 November, 2005
Date proposal approved: 
Tuesday, 1 November, 2005
Keywords: 
Parenting
Primary keyword: 

B269 - Recurrence of postpartum depression - 01/10/2005

B number: 
B269
Principal applicant name: 
Dr Jonathan Evans (University of Bristol, UK)
Co-applicants: 
Title of project: 
Recurrence of postpartum depression.
Proposal summary: 

(No outline received).

Date proposal received: 
Saturday, 1 October, 2005
Date proposal approved: 
Saturday, 1 October, 2005
Keywords: 
Depression
Primary keyword: 

B221 - The prevalence associations and impact of developmental co-ordination disorder within ALSPAC - 01/10/2005

B number: 
B221
Principal applicant name: 
Dr Raghu Lingam (University of Bristol, UK)
Co-applicants: 
Title of project: 
The prevalence, associations and impact of developmental co-ordination disorder within ALSPAC.
Proposal summary: 

Developmental Coordination Disorder (DCD) is an under recognised cause of major disability in childhood. Due to a lack of robust epidemiological evidence there is a lack of awareness of how DCD affects children and limited evidence to support existing intervention strategies.

The aim of this study is to enhance the evidence base regarding the potential impact of DCD on the lives of children in order to inform recommendations for service provision, leading to the development of targeted multidisciplinary interventions to reduce physical, psychological and social disability. The proposed "Complex Intervention" will be based on a systematic review of the literature, a quantitative analysis of a large existing dataset, and a qualitative investigation of the experience of a group of adolescents with DCD and their parents.

Date proposal received: 
Saturday, 1 October, 2005
Date proposal approved: 
Saturday, 1 October, 2005
Keywords: 
Development, Motor Co-ordination
Primary keyword: 

B262 - Alcohol consumption and the outcomes of pregnancy - 01/10/2005

B number: 
B262
Principal applicant name: 
Dr Margaret Barrow (University Hospitals Leicester, UK)
Co-applicants: 
Title of project: 
Alcohol consumption and the outcomes of pregnancy.
Proposal summary: 

(No outline received).

Date proposal received: 
Saturday, 1 October, 2005
Date proposal approved: 
Saturday, 1 October, 2005
Keywords: 
Alcohol, Pregnancy
Primary keyword: 

Pages