Site search
Back to listing

Life Study

News - Life Study update October 2015

The Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) and the Medical Research Council (MRC) have agreed that the Research Councils’ funding for Life Study will be discontinued from early 2016 due to the serious challenges encountered in recruiting participants. Life Study was an ambitious, complex, and innovative study led from University College London (UCL) that aimed to track the development, health and wellbeing of around 80,000 UK babies and their parents.

UCL, ESRC and MRC are very grateful to the participants and all who contributed to Life Study, which has provided useful insights that will benefit future research in child health and wellbeing and will also inform the design of a wide range of research in other areas.

UCL is working with their NHS partners and others to take forward key elements of the study.

For more information, please contact

Life Study

About the cohort

Life Study is a new research study that will involve up to 80,000 babies– and their families – from across the UK.

Life Study will provide information relevant to the improvement of the lives, health and wellbeing of children, both now and in the future. This cohort will provide a rich and internationally unique longitudinal resource of data, environmental and biological samples that can be used to address future questions and hypotheses regarding early life origins of disease, health, well-being and development. We will collect information from children and their families across England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. Women and their partners will be invited to take part during pregnancy or soon after birth, and they and their baby will be seen either at specially commissioned Life Study centres during pregnancy and the baby’s first year of life, or in their own homes during the baby’s first year. The intention is to maintain contact with the children and their families throughout childhood and into adult life as with previous UK birth cohort studies.

Life Study is also a member of CLOSER (Cohort & Longitudinal Studies Enhancement Resources) which aims to maximise the use, value and impact of the UK’s longitudinal studies.






Life Study
Institute of Child Health
University College London
30 Guilford Street
United Kingdom

Telephone: +44 (0) 20 7905 2137


Page last updated: 29 Apr 2015


  • Gender: Male, Female
  • Sample size: 50,000-99,999
  • Anthropometric: Height, Weight, Waist circumference
  • Physical: Respiratory, Hearing and vision, Reproductive
  • Psychological: Mental health, Cognitive function
  • Lifestyle: Smoking, Physical activity, Dietary habits, Alcohol
  • Socio-economic: Occupation, Finances, Family circumstances, Housing, Education, Ethnic group, Marital status, Social support
  • Biological samples: Blood, Urine, Other