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An Opportunity to Improve the Course of Children's Health

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National Children's Study expands its reach

National Children's Study LogoDuring the past century, our society has made great strides in reducing disease and disability. Vaccines, sanitation, improved safety measures all contribute to the overall good health of the nation. Despite these advances, many people, especially children, suffer high rates of chronic and acute disease. How can we help our children enjoy healthier lives?

The National Children's Study stands poised to help answer this critical question. The Study, planned to be the largest long-term study of children’s health and their environments ever conducted in the United States, issued a request for proposals (RFP) to begin the process of awarding contracts to up to 20 new centers. These new centers will combine their efforts with the seven existing Vanguard Centers, which received contract awards in 2005, to continue implementing the Study and begin recruiting participants. The RFP is available at

"The results of the National Children's Study have the potential to improve the course of children’s health," said Duane Alexander, NICHD Director. By identifying the root causes of disease and disability, he explained, Study findings can help to determine what aspects of the environment are helpful or harmless, as well as those that are harmful to children’s health.

The NICHD was directed by congress to lead a national longitudinal study of environmental influences on children's health and development with other federal agencies in the Children's Health Act of 2000. From this directive came the National Children's Study. The Study is led by a consortium of federal agencies: the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services—including the NICHD and the National Institute for Environmental Health Sciences at the NIH, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

With a recent appropriation from congress, it is now possible for the Study to award additional contracts and to prepare for the recruitment of more than 100,000 women from around the country. Study planners designated 105 statistically representative locations across the United States. From these locations, the Study will recruit and enroll eligible participants, tracking them from before birth until their 21st birthdays.

For more information about the National Children's Study, select a link below:

Originally Posted: March 2, 2007

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Last Updated Date: 03/23/2011
Last Reviewed Date: 03/23/2011
Vision National Institutes of Health Home BOND National Institues of Health Home Home Storz Lab: Section on Environmental Gene Regulation Home Machner Lab: Unit on Microbial Pathogenesis Home Division of Intramural Population Health Research Home Bonifacino Lab: Section on Intracellular Protein Trafficking Home Lilly Lab: Section on Gamete Development Home Lippincott-Schwartz Lab: Section on Organelle Biology