DOHaD, developmental origins of health and disease, life course theory, LCT, social determinants of health, public health, health promotion, health policy, health systems, research translation


The developmental origins of health and disease (DOHaD) theory and life course theory (LCT) are emerging fields of research that have significant implications for the public health and health promotion professions. Using a DOHaD/LCT perspective, social determinants of health (SDH) take on new critical meaning by which health promotion professionals can implement DOHaD/LCT guided interventions, including recommended policies. Through these interventions, public health could further address the sources of worldwide chronic disease epidemics and reduce such disease rates substantially if related policy, programs, and interdisciplinary and multi-sector collaboration are emphasized. Additional characteristics of the most effective interventions involve context-specific adaptation and societal structures that impact upstream, early life environments on a broad scale, influencing multiple locations and/or diseases.

Original Publication Citation

Barnes, M. D., Heaton, T. L., Goates, M. C., & Packer, J. M. (2016). Intersystem Implications of the Developmental Origins of Health and Disease: Advancing Health Promotion in the 21st Century. Healthcare, 4(3), 45. doi:10.3390/healthcare4030045

Document Type

Peer-Reviewed Article

Publication Date


Permanent URL


MDPI (Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute)




Life Sciences


Health Science

University Standing at Time of Publication

Full Professor