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Cohort Information

CANDLE is an observational, longitudinal cohort research study of families in Shelby County, Tennessee. The study began by enrolling 1,503 pregnant women from 2006-2011, and it is continuing to follow these same mothers and their children today!

Over the years CANDLE mothers and their children have participated in multiple data collection visits where they completed surveys, cognitive testing, specimen collections, and physical measurements.

The CANDLE cohort is unique because it was designed to closely match the demographics of Shelby County, giving good representation for many underserved populations. This representation allows CANDLE scientists to examine problems unique to these populations!



What began as a study of children’s development and ability to learn has become a multidisciplinary study about many aspects of children’s health and well-being. CANDLE currently works with experts in mental health, obesity, neurodevelopment, genetics, pre-, peri-, and postnatal health, upper and lower airway health, and positive health.