The Barwon Infant Study
Peter Vuillermin and Anne-Louise Ponsonby
Barwon Health, Murdoch Children’s Research Institute, Deakin University
National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC)
To investigate the mechanistic basis of the increase in immune-related diseases.
The modern environment is associated with an increasing burden of non-communicable diseases NCDs). Mounting evidence implicates environmental exposures, experienced early in life (including in utero), in the aetiology of many NCDs, though the cellular/molecular mechanism(s) underlying this elevated risk across the life course remain unclear. Epigenetic variation has emerged as a candidate mediator of such effects. The Barwon Infant Study (BIS) is a population-derived birth cohort study (n 1⁄4 1074 infants) with ante- natal recruitment, conducted in the south-east of Australia (Victoria). BIS has been de- signed to facilitate a detailed mechanistic investigation of development within an epidemiological framework. The broad objectives are to investigate the role of specific environmental factors, gut microbiota and epigenetic variation in early-life development, and subsequent immune, allergic, cardiovascular, respiratory, and neurodevelopmental outcomes. Participants have been reviewed at birth, 1, 6, 9 and 12 months, 2 and 4-years and 7-9 year review underway.
Birth cohort (n=1074) recruited using an unselected antenatal sampling frame.
Recruitment completed January 2013. Data collection ongoing, through January 2029.