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PrincipaI Investigator: Professor Carol Brayne

Start date: 1989

Age at recruitment: >65

Sample size at recruitment: 18,500

Estimated current sample size: 150

The CFAS I study started in the late 1980s with the initial aim of investigating dementia and cognitive decline in a representative sample of more than 18,000 people aged over 65 years.  To date there have been in the region of 47,000 interviews with participants in the study. The range of information collected has allowed the study to investigate depression and physical disability in the older population and also look at healthy active life expectancy. Following baseline interviews, subsets of the cohort have been contacted for 1, 2, 6 and 8 year follow up and the whole sample was contacted for a 10 year follow up. There have also been 500 donations of participants' brains after death.


Contact details:

Institute of Public Health
Forvie Site
University of Cambridge School of Clinical Medicine
Cambridge Biomedical Campus

01223 330312

Funders (core support): Medical Research Council

Gender: MF

Variables collected

Anthropometric and physical: cardiovascular; respiratory; hearing; vision.

Psychological: mental health; cognitive function.

Lifestyle: smoking; physical activity; alcohol.

Socio-economic: education; occupation.

Biolological samples: blood; other (buccal cell placenta, brain, muscle, teeth, hair).

Acknowledgement statement:

MRC CFAS has been supported by the Medical Research Council and the Department of Health (G9901400). We thank the participants, their families, general practitioners and their staff and primary care trusts for their cooperation and support for the study.

Ethical approval for MRC CFAS study was received by Anglia & Oxford MREC 99/5/22 in 1991, and 05/MRE05/37 from Eastern Multi-Research Ethics committee in 2005. We are most grateful to the CFAS fieldwork Interviewers, research nurses and administration staff at Cambridge, Newcastle, Nottingham, Liverpool, Gwynedd and Oxford for their valuable contribution to the study.