1. About the Study

The Mater Misericordiae Mothers' Hospital-University of Queensland Study of Pregnancy began as a prospective study of 8,556 pregnant women interviewed after their first clinic visit. The initial phase of data collection commenced in 1981. Later phases have collected data on both mother and child a various times after the children were born: when the children were around the ages of six months, five years, fourteen and twenty-one years old.

Between 2009 and 2012, we followed-up with the Mothers separately to focus on the midlife experiences of women. The 30-year phase, between 2011 and 2014, followed-up with the children, rather, young adults of the study.  This phase of the study was especially interested in the specific developmental path and risk factors for conditions such as obesity, metabolic syndrome and diabetes, and mental health.

An exciting new phase of the study is due to commence soon - this time looking at the third generation of participants, the grandchildren of our original Mothers. We are hoping to learn about the generational and developmental pathways of childhood and adolescent obesity and the transmission of antisocial behaviour across three generations. MUSP is one of only a handful of studies worldwide that is able to examine whether maternal pregnancy, early childhood and puberty are critical periods for the development of obesity and behavioural problems.