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National Children's Study Begins Recruiting Volunteers
Date:1/13/2009

WASHINGTON, Jan. 13 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The National Institutes of Health announced today that the National Children's Study will begin recruiting volunteers to take part in its comprehensive study of how genes and the environment interact to affect children's health. At a briefing, NIH officials announced that the first phase of recruitment for the study will begin in Duplin County, North Carolina, and Queens, New York.

The study will track the health and development of more than 100,000 children from before birth through to their 21st birthday.

"The principal benefit of a large scale, long-term study like the National Children's Study is that it will uncover important health information at virtually every phase of life," said Duane Alexander, M.D., Director of NIH's Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD), one of a consortium of federal agencies implementing the study. "Initially, it will provide major insights into disorders of birth and infancy, such as preterm birth and its health consequences. Ultimately it will lead to a greater understanding of adult disorders, many of which are thought to be heavily influenced by early life exposures and events. "

Dr. Alexander added that the large size and prospective nature of the study should yield information that smaller and more limited studies cannot. For example, because of the large number of individuals enrolled, the study has the capability to assess uncommon disorders, as well as how exposures to different environmental conditions and genetic factors may interact.

The National Children's Study was authorized by Congress in the Children's Health Act of 2000. In addition to the NICHD, other members of the consortium carrying out the study are the NIH's National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, the Centers for Disease Control and Preventi
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SOURCE National Institutes of Health (NIH)
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