The Family Cohort will look at:
• how illness and disease are different in men and women
• how developments in the womb or during youth affect health in later stages of life
• the relationship between genes, environment, and behavior
The Cohort goals are:
1. To advance medical knowledge of health and sex differences in chronic diseases using state-of-the-art technological advances in genetics, imaging, and other technologies.
2. To translate findings into medical practice and health policy.
A Family Cohort drawn from 8,000 births at BWH, coupled with new technologies and the expertise of BWH scientists, will show:
Intergenerational pattern(s) of disease; how environmental exposures in pregnancy and infancy alter child development and set the stage for adult disease; how common pregnancy complications predict the future health of the mother, and how this information can help us prevent disease; brain and body interactions that affect physical and mental health; and sex differences in common diseases.
Among other things, we will learn:
Whether it matters that you get risk genes from mother or father; the earliest predictors of obesity, heart function, and depression, and how they differ for girls and boys; which factors in pregnancy affect attentional disorders in children; and why do pregnancy complications predict early mortality in the 25% of mothers who experience them?