Sari Birth Cohort


During the past decades, the global disease burden has continued to shift away from communicable to non-communicable diseases which now contribute to a major part of disability-adjusted life years (DALYs) and mortality worldwide. It leads to better control of communicable diseases and achieving higher life expectancy. Prevalence of chronic non-communicable diseases (NCDs) is increasing in Iran. Morbidity and mortality related to NCDs are common during recent years and this trend is expected to continue in coming years.

Interventions for preventing these conditions have increasingly become a top priority for the Iranian health system. Developmental Origins of Health and Diseases (DOHaD) has provided new insight towards novel ways of tackling non-communicable diseases by interventions aimed at conditions early in life.

To date, however, little interventions have been applied in Iran, because of lack of local evidence for the effects of early life conditions on non-communicable diseases in adulthood. More evidence has shown the association between pre and postnatal conditions with neurodevelopment in children. Therefore, interventions for improving such early life conditions lead to an advantage in population mental capital, which in turn would have lasting effects through the life-course. Because of contextual and cultural differences, the findings of studies related to DOHaD that are mostly conducted in Western developed countries are not necessarily generalizable to the Iranian population. Our proposed project will be based on a multi-center nationally-representative birth cohort to study DOHaD in Iranian population according to local contextual and cultural aspects. The findings of this project will not only inform policymakers regarding evidence-based interventions targeted at Iranian population, but also will enable Iran to become one of the pioneers of DOHaD research worldwide.