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iowa bone study

Preventive & Community Dentistry Research: Iowa Bone Development Study

The Iowa Bone Development Study (IBDS) was initiated in 1998 and involves Iowa Fluoride Study (IFS) children and their parents. The study is assessing children’s bone development over time through special, low radiation x-ray type procedures and relating the findings to detailed assessments of genetic, dietary (including fluoride and calcium), physical activity, anthropometric (height, weight, etc.), demographic, and parental factors.

Assessments of bone development were made at ages 5, 9, 11, 13, 15 and 17. The study is currently completing bone assessments among participating young adults at age 19 to 20 (and hopes to assess them again at age 23 to 24). Continuing to study the same young adults from birth through the critical teenage and early adult years of bone development is yielding valuable information to help determine which factors are or are not contributing to bone health, ultimately allowing for improved public health recommendations.   Currently, there are about 475 children participating. In addition, most of the children’s parents have also participated by having their bones scanned.

DNA samples were obtained beginning in 1998 within the IBDS for bone study linkage only. In subsequent years, additional consent was obtained from the majority of study subjects/families to allow children’s/parents’ genetic samples to be used by our study team in analyses related to dental outcomes, including dental caries and fluorosis. Also, the majority have given permission to have their genetic, examination, and questionnaire data included in the National Institutes of Health (NIH) genome-wide association study (GWAS) repository.