LifeLines Cohort Study & Biobank (LifeLines)

Overall aim of the LifeLines study is to unravel the interaction between genetic and environmental factors in the development of multifactorial diseases, their concurrent development in individuals and their complications as a complex trait. The primary objectives are to establish which are the disease overriding risk factors which predict the development of a multifactorial disease during lifetime, and how are these universal risk factors modified, or what determines the effect of a universal risk factor in an individual. Specific research questions will focus on risk factors and modifiers (genetic, environmental and combined or complex factors) for single and multiple diseases. In addition to co-morbidity, LifeLines focuses on co-determinants. The primary endpoints include measures of ageing, metabolic and endocrine diseases, cardiology, renal diseases, pulmonary and musculoskeletal diseases, and psychopathology. Secondary objectives: Secondary aims include the assessment of the prevalence and incidence of multifactorial diseases and their risk factors in individuals as well as in families. The burden of disease for the society will be quantified in terms of care needed, and total costs of care.

General Information

General Design

Study design: 
Cohort study
General Information on Follow Up (profile and frequency): 

At baseline, all participants received a number of questionnaires and a basic medical examination at a local LifeLines research facility. Urine and blood samples were collected for storage and for laboratory measurements. The participants are followed for at least 30 years and are invited every 5 years for a visit to the LifeLines research facility. In the years in between the participants receive follow-up questionnaires. Follow-up on morbidity and mortality are also based on general practitioners, hospital and pharmacy records. Additional examinations or questionnaires in subgroups of participants to investigate specific research questions are possible.

Recruitment target: 
Families (including twin studies, sibships and family based birth cohorts)
Target number of participants: 
165 000
Target number of participants with biological samples: 
165 000
Supplementary information about target number of participants: 

All LifeLines participants have been included. The cohort consists of more than 165.000 individuals. The aim was to include 45 000 probands, 30000 partners, 55000 parents (including in laws) and 35000 children. LifeLines is at the moment working out all probands. 

Supplementary information: 

A selection of general practitioners from the three northern provinces of the Netherlands, Groningen, Friesland and Drenthe invited all their listed patients between 25 and 50 years of age. These probands were asked to invite their parents, partner(s), parents in law and children to participate as well. Besides this, also other persons who were interested to participate were able to register.

In LifeLines participants of all ages were included. Based on the age of the participant, he or she was included in the children’s cohort (0-18 years), the adult cohort (18-65 years) or the elderly cohort  (>65 years). The major part of the protocol and therefore the measurements are the same for all participants. However, parts of the protocol are adjusted for each cohort to suit with the characteristics of the specific age group. Forchildren. five specific a su-protocol were ievelopmd, aordesponsing iith the cdiferenc development l satges  

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