About

Based at the University of Bristol, the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children (ALSPAC), also known as Children of the 90s, is a world-leading birth cohort study.

Between April 1991 and December 1992 we recruited more than 14,000 pregnant women into the study and these women (some of whom had two pregnancies or multiple births during the recruitment period), the children arising from the pregnancy, and their partners have been followed up intensively over two decades.

We are the most detailed study of its kind in the world and we provide the international research community with a rich resource for the study of the environmental and genetic factors that affect a person’s health and development. Through our research we aim to inform policy and practices that will provide a better life for future generations.

Who We Are

The team is led by two principal investigators - Professor George Davey Smith (scientific innovation) and Professor Paul Burton (cohort infrastructure).

They are supported by an Executive Committee which provides scientific direction and which meets regularly to discuss new research proposals. ALSPAC is managed by Lynn Molloy, the Executive Director, who is supported by a Senior Management Team who provide day-to-day management of all aspects of the study.

We have an advisory panel of 30+ study participants called the Original Cohort Advisory Panel (OCAP), which meets bi-monthly to provide feedback on new research projects and to review study documentation from a participant's perspective. For more information about OCAP, see the terms of reference (PDF, 87kB) and role description (PDF, 270kB).

ALSPAC is part of the CLOSER network, which aims to maximise the use, value and impact of UK longitudinal studies.

Governance

The Executive Committee reports to the Independent Scientific Advisory Board, which provides an independent strategic view of the progress and conduct of ALSPAC and meets twice a year.

The ALSPAC Ethics and Law Committee (ALEC), is made up of clinicians, researchers, lawyers and study participants. It provides ethical oversight of ALSPAC as a whole and, where relevant, reviews individual proposals for new data collection. It meets bi-monthly. The Original Cohort Advisory Panel (OCAP) is made up of ALSPAC participants and provides input and advice on study design, methodology and acceptability for participants. It meets 5-6 times per year.

Funding

We receive core funding from the UK Medical Research Council, the Wellcome Trust and the University of Bristol and additional support from many other funders for individual projects.

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