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Title: Cohort profile: biological pathways of risk and resilience in Syrian refugee children (BIOPATH)
Authors: McEwen, Fiona S
Popham, Cassandra
Moghames, Patricia
Smeeth, Demelza
de Villiers, Bernadette
Saab, Dahlia
Karam, Georges
Fayyad, John
Pluess, Michael
karam, Elie G.
Affiliations: Faculty of Medicine 
Faculty of Medicine 
Keywords: Child and adolescent mental health
Cohort study
Syrian refugees
War exposure
Issue Date: 2022
Publisher: Springer
Part of: Social Psychiatry and Psychiatric Epidemiology
Volume: 57
Issue: 4
Start page: 873
End page: 883
The BIOPATH cohort was established to explore the interplay of psychosocial and biological factors in the development of resilience and mental health problems in Syrian refugee children. Based in Lebanon, a middle-income country significantly impacted by the refugee crisis, it is the first such cohort of refugees in the Middle East. Families were recruited from informal tented settlements in the Beqaa region using purposive cluster sampling. At baseline (October 2017-January 2018), N = 3188 individuals participated [n = 1594 child-caregiver dyads; child gender, 52.6% female; mean (SD) age = 11.44 (2.44) years, range = 6-19]. Re-participation rate at 1-year follow-up was 62.8%. Individual interviews were conducted with children and primary caregivers and biological samples collected from children. Measures include: (1) children's well-being and mental health problems (using tools validated against clinical interviews in a subsample of the cohort); (2) psychosocial risk and protective factors at the level of the individual (e.g. coping strategies), family (e.g. parent-child relationship), community (e.g. collective efficacy), and wider context (e.g. services); (3) saliva samples for genetic and epigenetic (methylation) analyses; (4) hair samples to measure cortisol, dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA) and testosterone. This cohort profile provides details about sampling and recruitment, data collection and measures, demographic data, attrition and potential bias, key findings on resilience and mental health problems in children and strengths and limitations of the cohort. Researchers interested in accessing data should contact Professor Michael Pluess at Queen Mary University of London, UK (e-mail:
ISSN: 09337954
DOI: 10.1007/s00127-022-02228-8
Ezproxy URL: Link to full text
Type: Journal Article
Appears in Collections:Faculty of Medicine

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