Groningen Expert Centre for Kids with Obesity (GECKO) Study the early determinants of childhood obesity Facility
GECKO, a population-based birth-cohort following approximately three thousand children in Drenthe, The Netherlands. We focus on the behavioral, social, environmental and genetic risk factors for childhood obesity.

The Groningen Expert Centre for Kids with Obesity (GECKO) started research into the development of overweight in children in 2006.

The main aims of our study are:

  • To establish determinants of childhood obesity;
  • To identify factors that contribute to the development of childhood obesity;
  • To observe the role of the parents in the development;
  • To identify the role of genes and early programming on child health and growth;
  • To observe the physical activity and nutrition contribute to the development of obesity;
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Examine childhood obesity

The GECKO Drenthe cohort has been designed to examine the behavioral, social, environmental and genetic risk factors for childhood obesity.

Our study is a population-based birth-cohort of children born between April 2006 and April 2007. During this period, a total of 5326 infants were born.

Parents of 2997 infants signed informed consent and 2842 children started active participation in the study. All these children were followed from pregnancy and will be followed until adulthood.

Background information

  • During pregnancy, data was retrieved from the parents concerning reproductive and medical history, social structures, lifestyle and diet and smoking behavior of the parents before and during pregnancy. Clinical data concerning the pregnancy and delivery was collected through obstetricians, midwives and general practitioners.

    Information after the birth of the child was collected through questionnaires for the parents concerning lifestyle, diet behavior, physical activity, biological factors, social factors, environmental influencers and illness.

    Anthropometry measurements were done by Youth Health Care practitioners and provided data concerning weight, length, head-, hip- and waist circumference and blood pressure.

    Additional measurements were done for subgroups of the participants of the cohort. These measurements could involve urine samples, blood samples, GWAS, methylation analyses of cord blood, and physical activity measurements with accelerometers.

  • Are you a participant of the GECKO research? Read our patient information (in Dutch).



Postal address:

GECKO Drenthe Onderzoeksteam
Antwoordnummer 275
Postbus 30001
9700 RB Groningen, The Netherlands