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Vanhan kaksoskohortin tutkimukset käynnistyivät vuonna 1975. Kaksi seurantakyselyä toteutettiin vuosina 1981 ja 1990. Tämän jälkeen on tehty tietokantapohjaisia (question) seurantoja sekä useita kliinisiä ja intensiivisiä tutkimuksia pienemmillä kaksosmäärillä (Kaprio & Koskenvuo, 2002). Viimeisten viiden vuoden aikana (warning) painopiste on siirtynyt tietokantapohjaisiin (question) seurantatutkimuksiin niissä osatutkimuksissa joiden tiedonkeruu on saatu päätökseen.

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Perhetutkimus nikotiinista on osa tohtori Pam Maddenin johtamaa kansainvälistä konsortiota (question), joka on saanut pääasiallisen rahoituksensa vuosina 2001-2005 NIH:ltä Yhdysvaltain kansalliselta terveysinstituutilta.

The Family Study of Nicotine Dependence is part of an international consortium led by Dr Pam Madden, and primarily funded from 2001 to 2005 by NIH to address the genetics of nicotine dependence. The study sample consists of families ascertained for heavy smoking in at least two siblings, who have been sampled from amongst the older twin cohort (born before 1958) first assessed by questionnaire in 1975. Data on lifetime tobacco use, nicotine dependence, and associated factors were obtained by a detailed diagnostic telephone interview (average duration 120 minutes) and subsequentquestionnaire. The interview yields diagnoses of nicotine dependence defined using Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (4th ed.; DSM-IV; American Psychiatric Association, 1994) and the Fagerström Test for Nicotine Dependence, and the questionnaire yields a quantitative measure of nicotine dependence from the Nicotine Dependence Syndrome Scale (Shiffman et al., 2004). In addition, multiple other measures of smoking history including details on initiation, cessation and withdrawal symptoms are assessed as well as alcohol use, psychiatric comorbidity and demographics. DNA samples are collected by blood sampling at local health centers. A total of 2265 individuals from 762 families participated; 59% of invited families participated. Participants were somewhat older than nonparticipants, more often women than men, but participants and nonparticipants did not differ in amount smoked based on earlier questionnaire information.

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