Child health and the environment: the INMA Spanish Study

Núria Ribas-Fitó, Rosa Ramón, Ferran Ballester, Joan Grimalt, Alfredo Marco, Nicolás Olea, Manuel Posada, Marisa Rebagliato, Adonina Tardón, Maties Torrent, Jordi Sunyer
Paediatric and Perinatal Epidemiology 2006, 20 (5): 403-10
The INMA (INfancia y Medio Ambiente [Environment and Childhood]) is a population-based cohort study in different Spanish cities, that focuses on prenatal environmental exposures and growth, development and health from early fetal life until childhood. The study focuses on five primary areas of research: (1) growth and physical development; (2) behavioural and cognitive development; (3) asthma and allergies; (4) sexual and reproductive development; and (5) environmental exposure pathways. The general aims of the project are: (1) to describe the degree of individual prenatal exposure to environmental pollutants, and the internal dose of chemicals during pregnancy, at birth and during childhood in Spain; (2) to evaluate the impact of the exposure to different contaminants on fetal and infant growth, health and development; (3) to evaluate the role of diet on fetal and infant growth, health and development; and (4) to evaluate the interaction between persistent pollutants, nutrients and genetic determinants on fetal and infant growth, health and development. Extensive assessments will be carried out on 3100 pregnant women and children. Data will be collected by physical examinations, questionnaires, interviews, ultrasound and biological samples. Pregnant women are being assessed at 12, 20 and 32 weeks of gestation to collect information about environmental exposures and fetal growth. The children will be followed until the age of 4 years.

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