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Cohort Acronym

Cohort type
General population-based cohort

Alzheimer's disease, Dementia (unclassified), Frontotemporal dementia, Mild cognitive impairment (MCI), Vascular dementia

Participant type
No diagnosis

Recruitment Period 1st June 1932 
Sample size at start or planned sample size if still recruiting 87,498  
Estimated Current Sample Size 0 to 4,999 
Age at Recruitment 11   
Gender Male and Female 

On 1st June 1932, as part of the Scottish Mental Survey, 87,498 Scottish schoolchildren born in 1921 sat the same test of mental ability: the Moray House Test. In 1997, the Universities of Aberdeen and Edinburgh began to search for men and women still living in Scotland who took part in these tests.
On 1st June 1998, about 80 individuals gathered in the Aberdeen Music Hall to re-sit the test exactly 66 years later. Participants were followed-up 5 times over a 10 year period.

Aberdeen University has followed all of the children born in Aberdeen in 1921, 1936 (see Aberdeen Birth Cohort 1936) and 1950-1956 (see Aberdeen Children of the 1950’s) as they grow and age.
Collectively these groups are known as the ABERDEEN BIRTH COHORTS, and have helped to advance our understanding of aging well.

Over the years, researchers have linked the results from these tests to health and social information.
The linked data has been used to answer questions like:
• Does being born very small affect mental health later in life?
• Is the risk of dementia related to childhood intelligence?
• What influences quality of life in old-age?
Participants born in 1921 and 1936 have been invited back for a wide variety of studies at the University. Similar research is being started for the Children of the 1950’s group.

Country United Kingdom 
Contact details
Institution name University of Aberdeen 
Principal Investiator (PI) Prof Alison Murray 
Contact email PI Email: [email protected]; PI Email: [email protected] 
Contact phone number Tel: +44 (0)1224 438353 
Address Aberdeen Birth Cohort 1921 Study
University of Aberdeen
Lilian Sutton Building
University of Aberdeen
AB25 2ZD 
Funders (Core support) University of Aberdeen 

Variables Collected

Brain related measures: N/A
Funtional rating: N/A
Anthropometric: Blood pressure, Height, Waist circumference, Weight
Physical: N/A
Biological samples: N/A
Genotyping: N/A
Brain imaging: Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)
Brain banking: N/A
Lifestyle: Alcohol, Smoking
Socio-economic: Education, Ethnic group, Family circumstances, Housing and accommodation, Occupation and employment
Health service utilisation: N/A
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