Type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease are leading
causes of death and disability in Denmark. Overweight and obesity from childhood onwards are a
major contributor to these cardiometabolic diseases, and levels are too high in Danish children
and adults. Further, growth during fetal life, familial and intergenerational inheritance, social
determinants of health and health policies also contribute to the risk of cardiometabolic disease.
Nonetheless, an integrated understanding of how these factors operate on risk across the lifecourse
from early life to disease is lacking. In the proposed research we will determine how growth during
fetal life and childhood is associated with cardiometabolic disease risk factors at child ages and
hard endpoint cardiometabolic disease at adult ages. We will examine genetic and intergenerational
contributions to disease risk, effects of social determinants of health and if policy changes affecting
school-based health care provision impact later disease.
This novel cross-disciplinary project will provide
etiologic insights into the early origins of disease, direct at which ages and stages of life there are
suitable targets for prevention and intervention, and identify potentially effective policy changes, and
thus increase opportunities for protecting and improving cardiometabolic health.