New home and new beginnings for ALSPAC
Press release issued: 10 December 2008
The world-famous Children of the 90s (ALSPAC) project is entering an exciting new era. The project has moved into attractive new premises, just in time to welcome the teenagers back for a 17-year health review and launch a pioneering new study of their mothers.
ALSPAC’s new home - Oakfield House in Oakfield Grove, Clifton - will be officially opened at 10.30 am on Wednesday 10 December. The ceremony will be performed by Dr Mark Walport, Director of the Wellcome Trust, which is a major funder of ALSPAC.
The project is based at the University of Bristol, and Professor Eric Thomas, the University’s Vice-Chancellor, will join the celebrations.
Guests of honour will include many of the young people and parents in the study, including:
- the mother of the very first ALSPAC baby born in April 1991;
- members of the Teenage Advisory Panel who help run the project;
- Frenzee – a brilliant 17-year-old rap artist, who recently won the title “Britain’s Next Urban Superstar”;
- the very first Child of the 90s to go to university.
Children of the 90s has been following the health and development of over 10,000 children since before birth, and they are now aged 16-17. All the information and biological samples collected over the years form an invaluable resource for health researchers all over the world.
Two exciting new projects are just beginning at ALSPAC.
The first is Focus 17. All the young people in the study are being invited to come for an in-depth health review when they turn 17. This is a key stage of life, and they will take part in a wide range of high-tech scans and tests to assess their mental and physical health as they enter adulthood.
The second project is a pioneering new study of the ALSPAC mothers. They will be invited to come to Oakfield House for a range of tests, which will be compared with the information collected about them during their pregnancies. The aim is to identify risk factors for diabetes and heart disease. Some of the first mothers to take part will be going through their tests on 10 December.
Further informationALSPAC is the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children (also known as Children of the 90s). It is a unique ongoing research project based in the University of Bristol. It enrolled 14,000 mothers during pregnancy in 1991-2 and has followed most of the children and parents in minute detail ever since.
The ALSPAC study could not have been undertaken without the continuing financial support of the Medical Research Council, the Wellcome Trust, and the University of Bristol among many others.