What is EDEN ?

The EDEN study is the first generalist cohort study conducted in France on the Early Pre- and Postnatal Determinants of Psychomotor Development and Health of the Child.

The objective of EDEN is to better understand the importance of early determinants on the health of individuals, in particular with regard to the environmental factors that influence it during childhood and then adult life. Indeed, in recent decades it has become increasingly clear that events occurring before birth or during the first months of life can have long-term health consequences, even if they do not affect immediate health. The best known example is the increased risk of developing cardiovascular disease in adulthood in people born at low birth weight.

The EDEN study is a longitudinal epidemiological cohort whose initial aim was to follow a cohort of children from the end of the first trimester of pregnancy until the age of 5 years, taking into account a wide range of information collected from the mother and father during the child's examination and based on the collection of biological samples. Most of the EDEN families agreed to continue beyond 5 years. They were contacted again at ages 8 and 11-13. A new follow-up of the children at 15-18 years is planned for 2021-2022.

Who leads EDEN ?

The EDEN study is conducted under the aegis of several epidemiology laboratories of Inserm (Institut National de la Santé et de la Recherche Médicale) and the University Hospital Centres of Poitiers and Nancy.

Who are the EDEN participants ?

In total, 2,002 pregnant women were recruited at the end of the first trimester of pregnancy in two centres (maternity wards of the Nancy and Poitiers university hospitals). Recruitment began in February 2003 and ended in January 2006. Children born between May 2003 and July 2006 were followed for 5 years. New contacts were also made at 8 and 10-13 years. A new follow-up is planned at 15-18 years.

What are the factors examined in EDEN ?

Among the many avenues explored in the EDEN study are

  •     Assessing the impact of maternal nutrition during pregnancy on the child's development and health after birth, in particular growth, cognitive and motor development, the onset of overweight and asthma.
  •     Exposure to pollutants, toxins and allergens during pregnancy and the first years of life, and the impact of these exposures on the health and development of the child.
  •     The role of socio-economic and psycho-affective factors and their interactions with biological factors on child and adolescent health and development.

What data were collected and how ?

Between the time of recruitment and the child's 5thbirthday, the steps are divided between questionnaires and clinical examinations carried out in each centre.

The questionnaires filled in by the parents contain information about

  • the mother: diet before and during pregnancy, socio-economic situation,

  • lifestyle, medical questionnaire, oral health status, work stress morale.

  • the father: socio-economic status, lifestyle, medical questionnaire.

  • the child: growth, medical follow-up, environment, activities and games, behaviour, diet, allergies.

Visits to the centres allow measurements to be taken of :

  •     Weight, height, skinfold thickness, blood pressure of the child at 1, 3 and 5 years.

  •     Bone mineral density by ultrasound at 1, 3 and 5 years of age.

  •     Respiratory capacity of the child at 5 years.

  •     Fat mass measured by impedancemetry (mother and child).

All data are collected anonymously and are analysed as a whole and not individually.

Download the initial study protocol

Download the 8-year follow-up protocol

Article in English presenting the EDEN cohort