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Enrieco Project: Environmental Health Risks in European Birth Cohorts

Enrieco (Environmental Health Risks in European Birth Cohorts) is a project conducted within the European Union's 7th Framework Programme [Theme 6, Environment (Including Climate Change)].  Its overall aim is to advance our knowledge on specific environment and health causal relationships in pregnancy and birth cohorts by providing support to exploitation of the wealth of data generated by past or ongoing studies funded by the EC and national programmes.

Overall the focus is on exposure response relationships in environment and health in pregnancy and early childhood.  The focus is to a large extent on extracting environmental exposure response relationships from existing data with some new work on specific environmental exposure response relationships, and preparatory work on how to obtain them such as standardizing exposure and health outcomes.

The structuring and consolidation of often fragmented data from various studies undertaken throughout Europe will improve the knowledge base for environment and health linkages. Data regarding environment-health causal relationships will be more readily available in a form useful for policy makers.

Project Significance

Epidemiological studies have shown associations between environmental hazards and adverse child health outcomes. The foetus and infant are especially vulnerable to the exposure to environmental risk factors that disrupt the developmental processes. Major environmental hazard such as ambient air pollution, water contaminants, allergens/ biological organisms, environmental tobacco smoke (ETS), noise pollution, pesticides, radiation, toxic wastes, and ultraviolet (UV) light may lead to serious health problems including premature birth, congenital anomalies, low birth weight, respiratory diseases, cancer, learning disabilities, behavioural problems, cancer, and birth defects, and may affect health in later life.

The economic and societal costs associated with children's environmental health disorders are substantial. Many epidemiological studies conducted in Europe have attempted to address these issues. However, generally, the wealth of available information has only been partially exploited, possibly in part because of the lack of statistical power of single studies to study rare health outcomes or exposures with a low prevalence. Therefore, there is an urgent need to evaluate, and where possible combine, the existing exposure response data, methods and tools from European birth cohort studies in order to reveal any causal links between exposing agents and health and to provide recommendations for effective policy decisions to improve children's environmental health and reduce economic and societal costs.


The 2nd Issue of the ENRIECO Newsletter provides summaries of project findings and rescources for more project relevant reports

A 2-page leaflet for all relevant stakeholders and policy makers interest in environment and health is published with a summary of the projects finding and also the need for future actions.

The next annual ISEE meeting will be held in Barcelona (September 13-16, 2011). The website is open now (www.isee2011.org) and contains up to date important information for abstract submission and registration.

Please find some updated Information regarding ENRIECO Participating Birth Cohorts 

The ENRIECO Project  just had a dissemination message in The Parliament Magazine, Issue 302 (22 February 2010, pg.69) and Issue 303 (8 March 2010, pg. 36).  For more information on these Issues, please visit: http://www.theparliament.com/ 


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