The Adult Netherlands Twin Register: Twenty-Five Years of Survey and Biological Data Collection

G. Willemsen, J.M. Vink, A. Abdellaoui, A. den Braber, J.H.D.A. van Beek, H.H.M. Draisma, J. van Dongen, D. van t Ent, L.M. Geels, R. van Lien, L. Ligthart, V.M. Kattenberg, H. Mbarek, M.H.M. de Moor, M. Neijts, R. Pool, N. Stroo, C. Kluft, H.E.D. Suchiman, P.E. SlagboomE.J.C. de Geus, D.I. Boomsma

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Over the past 25 years, the Adult Netherlands Twin Register (ANTR) has collected a wealth of information on physical and mental health, lifestyle, and personality in adolescents and adults. This article provides an overview of the sources of information available, the main research findings, and an outlook for the future. Between 1991 and 2012, longitudinal surveys were completed by twins, their parents, siblings, spouses, and offspring. Data are available for 33,957 participants, with most individuals having completed two or more surveys. Smaller projects provided in-depth phenotyping, including measurements of the autonomic nervous system, neurocognitive function, and brain imaging. For 46% of the ANTR participants, DNA samples are available and whole genome scans have been obtained in more than 11,000 individuals. These data have resulted in numerous studies on heritability, gene x environment interactions, and causality, as well as gene finding studies. In the future, these studies will continue with collection of additional phenotypes, such as metabolomic and telomere length data, and detailed genetic information provided by DNA and RNA sequencing. Record linkage to national registers will allow the study of morbidity and mortality, thus providing insight into the development of health, lifestyle, and behavior across the lifespan. Copyright © The Authors 2013.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)271-281
JournalTwin Research and Human Genetics
Issue number1
Early online date8 Jan 2013
Publication statusPublished - 2013

Cohort Studies

  • Netherlands Twin Register (NTR)


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