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Manchester Institute for Collaborative Research on Ageing

Ageing, health and early life development

Insights from embryology and paediatrics on later life outcomes

Tuesday 23 June 2015


Health in later life is strongly related to how we grow and develop in the womb and through childhood. Limiting the supply of nutrients to the foetus has been shown to lead to changes in how genes work.  In particular, poor foetal growth is associated with heart disease, stroke, diabetes and high blood pressure later in life. Prevention of these chronic conditions could be improved if their relationships to early life events were better understood.

This seminar presented research that looks at how poor health in later life is associated with foetal and child growth highlighting the possibility for early intervention to prevent disease in old age. We shared research from the University of Manchester on how networks of genes change associated with age across the early embryo, infancy, childhood and adolescence. We showed how these changes relate to the different phases of growth through childhood and can be mapped to health in later life.