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Periconceptional Programming of Health Training Network

Project description

Naturally controlled experiments may reveal novel disease predictors from infancy

The ‘Developmental Origins of Health and Disease’ (DOHaD) concept arose from findings more than 30 years ago that low birth weight is predictive of later risk for certain diseases. Since then, research has confirmed that our health and risk of disease throughout life are linked to conditions during the periconceptual period. This is relatively robust and repeatable across species although human studies are fewer given the practical difficulties of experimentation. DohART-NET is training a new cohort of DOHaD researchers through evaluation of links between parents’ periconceptual ‘environment’ (for example their health, chemical stressors or stress) and their babies’ health. The studies are strengthened by inclusion of so-called test-tube babies, one of the best-defined groups in this critical time period.


Altered conditions during the periconceptional (PC) period of gamete maturation and early embryonic development have long lasting effects on the health of the progeny, including the childhood, adolescent and adult-life onset of cardiovascular, metabolic and neurological diseases (‘Developmental Origins of Health and Disease (DOHaD) concept). Increasing evidence from epidemiological and animal model studies shows that children worldwide exhibit conditions and disease risks associated with the exposures of their parents, including chemical stressors before and during pregnancy, reproductive failure, adverse pregnancy outcome, diabetes, obesity and nutritional compromise. Babies born following human ART (“testtube”)interventions render this population (over 5 million world-wide) one of the largest well-defined clinical cohorts to be studied for a better understanding of the future risk of disease for current and succeeding generations in Europe. The DohART-NET project focus on the integration of pre-clinical (animal and stem cell-models) and clinical studies and apply data linkage, bioinformatics and network science for the identification and validation of mechanisms of diseases common in early development. We will exploit our new understanding to promote efficient disease prevention and potential personalised therapeutic interventions in both the general and ART populations to overcome adverse disease pathways. DohART-NET is optimized for training ESRs due to the facts that: i) the topic is progressive and much needed to improve public health over several generations, and it is integrating basic pre-clinical, translational clinical and in silico modeling approaches, iii) the partnership has a highly multi- and interdisciplinary scientific and training expertise and excellence, iv) there is an existing synergy by collaborations and links that the partners wish to strengthen both in science and lasting training programs in a highly inter-sectorial setting.


Net EU contribution
€ 523 240,36
2100 Goedoello

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The organization defined itself as SME (small and medium-sized enterprise) at the time the Grant Agreement was signed.

Közép-Magyarország Pest Pest
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)
Total cost
€ 523 240,36

Participants (10)

Partners (9)