Exploring multimorbidity in early-life through genetic epidemiology (EMERGENT)

Project description for EMERGENT


Multimorbidity – when different health problems co-occur together – is common and carries enormous individual and societal costs. Most research done on multimorbidity focuses on older patients, and strikingly little is known about its origins and effects across childhood, adolescence, and young adulthood. The EMERGENT project will address this research gap by providing robust, actionable evidence on the prevalence, causes, and consequences of early-life multimorbidity. The project PI has brought together a unique combination of internationally-recognised data sources, methodological innovations, and collaborative scientists to achieve this goal. We will first identify patterns and quantify the extent of multimorbidity in early-life in our samples, before using genetic epidemiological approaches such as genome-wide association analyses and Mendelian randomization to investigate why these patterns arise. Finally, we will seek to document the consequences of multimorbidity in early-life, in terms of its impacts on social functioning, education, wellbeing, and the mental health of close family members, as well as implications for the healthcare individuals receive. The overall aim of EMERGENT is to initiate a decade of discovery on the origins and impacts of multimorbidity in early-life, and alongside our empirical work we will do this by bringing together an international collaborative network that can be at the forefront of multimorbidity research for years to come.

Contact person 

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Laurie Hannigan




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Daniela Bragantini


Last updated 1/30/2024