The Kungsholmen Project is a longitudinal population-based study on ageing and dementia, carried out by the Stockholm Gerontology Research Center in collaboration with Aging Research Center (ARC), Karolinska Institutet.

The project, which started in 1987, has gathered a 12-year long database and offers information on aging from a multidisciplinary perspective. All persons that were born before 1913 and lived in the Kungsholmen district of Stockholm, were invited to participate (a total of 2368 persons on October 1st, 1987, including both community-dwelling and institutionalized persons). Later, the research additionally included all 90+ old subjects living in the St. Göran parish, an adjacent geographical area. The baseline phase and four follow-ups have been completed, with the last phase concluding in the summer of 2000. Time 1 was the only measurement occasion when a two-phase study design was adopted, with an extensive clinical examination performed after a screening phase. At every other occasion, all participants were interviewed by nurses, clinically examined by physicians, and assessed by psychologists.

The original study (1969-73) had five main objectives: (i) to study the relationship of birth weight (BW) and gestational age (GA) to infant mortality and the incidence of congenital defects; (ii) to study maternal blood pressure before and during pregnancy and the incidence of toxaemia; (iii) to assess the effects of parental consanguinity on reproductive outcomes; (iv) to examine the impact of family planning programmes on fertility and (v) to estimate rates of foetal loss, and neonatal, infant and early childhood mortality.1 The subsequent follow-up studies focused on the effects of prenatal factors BW and GA on physical growth and development and mortality during childhood and adolescence.

For the follow-up in young adulthood (1998-2002), the main objective was to study glucose tolerance, insulin resistance and insulin secretion and a range of cardiovascular risk factors (body composition, blood pressure and plasma lipid concentrations) in relation to parental size, neonatal size and childhood growth.

The Uppsala Birth Cohort Multigeneration Study (UBCoS) started in 2005 when we were first able to combine existing data on a representative and well-defined cohort of 14,192 males and females born in Uppsala from 1915-1929 (the Uppsala Birth Cohort: UBCoS) with information on descendants of the original cohort members obtained from routine registers.

In 2007-2011, the study was further developed by additional data collection in school archives and records from Census 1930 and the period of follow-up was extended till end of year 2009.

The study is unique in investigating intergenerational effects as “forward in time” processes, starting at the beginning of the last century (i.e. well before any of the routine registers were in place). Intergenerational associations can be currently investigated in more than 140,000 study subjects from families spanning up to five generations, including the 14,192 original cohort members, their 22,559 children, 38,771 grandchildren and 25,471 great grandchildren born up to 2009.

The Prospective Epidemiological Risk Factor (PERF) Study is an ambidirectional population-based study of postmenopausal women set up with the purpose of obtaining a better understanding of the aetiology and pathogenesis of age-related diseases. Participants were recruited from a source population of 8875 women residing in Denmark. The baseline examination (PERF I) comprised 5855 women with mean age of 70.8 years (49.7-88.8) and took place between 1999 and 2001. All subjects have been followed up with registry linkage using population-based national registries. Further, a subcohort was re-invited to attend a follow-up visit between 2013 and 2014 (PERF II). Registry data are available for all baseline participants. From the baseline population, 2103 were enrolled in PERF II.

The Scottish Health Survey (SHeS) provides a detailed picture of the health of the Scottish population in private households and is designed to make a major contribution to the monitoring of health in Scotland.
The series aims to:
• estimate the occurrence of particular health conditions
• estimate the prevalence of certain risk factors associated with health
• look at differences between regions and between subgroups of the population
• monitor trends in the population’s health over time
• make a major contribution to monitoring progress towards health targets

The Scottish Longitudinal Study (SLS) is a large-scale linkage study created using data from administrative and statistical sources. These include: census data from 1991 onwards; vital events data (births, deaths, marriages); NHS Central Register data (gives information on migration into or out of Scotland); and education data (including Schools Census and SQA data).

The Limache cohort was set up to assess the programming and life course events hypotheses in relation to cardiovascular risk factors and chronic respiratory conditions, especially asthma, in the context of an unprecedented economic growth in Chile. The cohort was a representative sample of 1,232 participants born between 1974 and 1978 in the hospital of Limache. The study includes data collected at birth, during the 1st year of life, at 22 to 28 years (collected between 2000 and 2002) and at 32 to 38 years (collected between 2010 and 2012).

This was possible because details were collected for all births in the country including duration of gestation, birthweight and birth length. Limache, a semirural agricultural area relatively near Santiago and close to Viña del Mar and Valparaíso, was chosen because: a birth register in the hospital has been kept since the 1970s; paediatric clinical records were kept in the local hospital ; and there was demographic information that emigration from this area was low so that we would be able to find most participants born in the 1970s still living in Limache and in Olmué, a neighbouring area.

The Moli-sani study ( is a cohort study aiming at evaluating the risk factors (environmental, genetics, bio-molecular) linked to chronic-degenerative disease with particular regard to cancer, cardiovascular, cerebrovascular and neurodegenerative disease.
The study has recruited, between March 2005 and April 2010, 24,325 people aged ³ 35 living in the Molise region, from city hall registries by a multistage sampling. Exclusion criteria were pregnancy at the time of recruitment, disturbances in understanding or willingness, current poly-traumas or coma, or refusal to sign the informed consent. Participation rate was 70%.
All subjects underwent electrocardiogram and spirometric tests aimed to evaluate pulmonary diffusion capacity, gas diffusion and pulmonary volumes through plethysmography.
The European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition FFQ was used to determine daily nutritional intakes consumed in the past year.
A follow-up based on linkage with hospital discharge records (SDO) and mortality regional registry was performed at December 2011 with a median of 4.3 years and at December 2014 with a median of 9.6 years. Outcomes analysed at follow-up are: mortality for any and specific causes, hospitalization and hospital stay, coronary artery disease, stroke, atrial fibrillation, heart failure, diabetes, cancer.

UK Biobank is a major national health resource, and a registered charity in its own right, with the aim of improving the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of a wide range of serious and life-threatening illnesses – including cancer, heart diseases, stroke, diabetes, arthritis, osteoporosis, eye disorders, depression and forms of dementia.

500,000 people aged between 40-69 years were recruited in 2006-2010 from across the country to take part in this project. They have undergone measures, provided blood, urine and saliva samples for future analysis, detailed information about themselves and agreed to have their health followed. The cohort is primarily followed through data linkage but the cohort was re-contacted in 2012-13 with a further 100,000 to be approached over the next few years.

The Whitehall II Study was established in 1985 to investigate the importance of socioeconomic circumstances for health by following a cohort of working men and women aged 35-55 at enrolment. Participants have taken part in twelve data collection phases, seven of which have included a medical screening. The aim of the study is to understand the causes of age-related heterogeneity in health.

By combining the existing 30 years of data on social circumstances, risk factors and chronic disease with new clinical measures of cognitive function, mental disorders and physical functioning, Whitehall II has been transformed interdisciplinary study of ageing. In addition to providing insights into individual and social differences in the development of frailty, disability, dependence, and dementia, the study helps in the determination of optimal time windows and targets for interventions that maximise the potential for healthy-ageing and independent living.