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Family matters
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Family matters: Designing, analysing and understanding family based studies in life course epidemiology

Deborah A. Lawlor and Gita D. Mishra


Family based studies, including intergenerational, sibling and twin studies, are increasingly used to explore life course epidemiology. However, understanding the underlying assumptions of these studies and hence the inferences that can be drawn from them is complex. Further, there are issues relating to study design and the statistical analysis of family-based studies that are not well understood. This book provides in one volume the knowledge and skills required to design, analyse, and correctly interpret family based studies. The book is divided into four sections that cover the theoretical ... More

Keywords: life course epidemiology, twin studies, sibling studies, intergenerational studies, family studies, genetic epidemiology, causality, statistical methods, cardiovascular disease, mental health

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2009 Print ISBN-13: 9780199231034
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2009 DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199231034.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Deborah A. Lawlor, editor
Professor of Epidemiology, MRC Centre for Causal Analyses in Translational Epidemiology, University of Bristol, UK

Gita D. Mishra, editor
Senior Research Scientist, MRC Unit for Lifelong Ageing and Health, Department of Epidemiology and Public Health, Royal Free and University College London Medical School, UK

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Chapter 1 Why family matters: an introduction

Debbie A Lawlor, and Gita D Mishra

Part I The theoretical underpinning for the use of family-based studies in life course epidemiology

Part II The practicalities of undertaking family-based studies

Chapter 6 Birth cohorts: a resource for life course studies

Anne-Marie Nybo Andersen, Mia Madsen, and Debbie A Lawlor

Chapter 7 Family-based life course studies in low- and middle-income countries

G David Batty, Cesar G Victora, and Debbie A Lawlor

Part III Statistical methods in family-based studies

Part IV Some illustrative examples of the use of family-based studies in life course epidemiology

End Matter