Each cohort represented in the Biorepository is still conducting follow-up today, most with very little attrition. Specimens collected up to 30 years ago are matched with information on diet, lifestyle, medication use, morbidity, mortality, and other health-related data.
Nurses’ Health Studies
The Nurses’ Health Studies are among the largest and longest-running investigations of factors that influence women’s health. The original cohort of the Nurses’ Health Study (NHS) was established in 1976 with the enrollment of 121,000 female nurses ages 30-55.
The Nurses’ Health Study II enrolled 116,430 nurses age 25-42 in 1989. The upper age corresponds to the lowest age group in the Nurses’ Health Study.
Nurses’ Health Study 3 began enrolling female RNs, LPNs, and nursing students ages 20-46 from across the US and Canada in 2010. NHS3 aims to be more representative of nurses’ diverse backgrounds and, for the first time, the study is entirely web-based.
Health Professionals Follow-up Study (HFPS)
The Health Professionals Follow-Up Study is an all-male study with 51,529 men. It began in 1986 to complement the all-female Nurses’ Health Studies.
Growing Up Today Studies
The Growing Up Today Studies (GUTS), established in 1996, follow more than 26,000 offspring of women in the Nurses’ Health Study II. GUTS I enrolled 16,882 girls and boys between the ages of 9-14. In 2004, 10,923 children ages 10-17 were enrolled in GUTS II.
In 2013, when all of the participants had matured to young adulthood, the cohorts were merged. The GUTS cohort is used in combination with the NHS II to study maternal-child pairs.
Physicians’ Health Study
The Physicians’ Health Study began in 1982 as a randomized controlled trial to test the benefits and risks of aspirin and beta carotene in the primary prevention of cardiovascular disease and cancer. The original RCT, the Physicians’ Health Study I, ended in 1995, but its participants continue to complete annual questionnaires.
A second RCT, the Physicians’ Health Study II, started in 1997 and ended in 2011.