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Center for Human Nutrition

The JiVitA Project
A Maternal and Child Health and Nutrition Research Program

JiVitA Research Participants


Gaibandha and Rangpur Districts, Bangladesh


The JiVitA Project is presently one of the largest population health and nutrition intervention research projects in South Asia. Operational since 2001 in northwest rural Bangladesh, the project was established by the Center for Human Nutrition at Johns Hopkins University under the auspices of the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare of the Government of Bangladesh for the purpose of conducting research on interventions to prevent micronutrient deficiencies and their health consequences in mothers, infants and children.

Project Goals

  • Inform, guide and motivate policies by identifying effective and low-cost nutrition interventions that improve health and survival of mothers, infants and children in rural Bangladesh and elsewhere in South Asia where undernutrition, infectious disease and mortality remain unacceptably high and health services inadequate
  • Test approaches that can safeguard pregnancy by reducing risk of miscarriage, stillbirth, preterm birth, small birth size and maternal morbidity, including obstetric complications
  • Reduce neonatal and post-neonatal infant mortality and infectious illnesses, and improve child development

About Project Site

JiVitA Research SiteThe JiVitA Project is located in a densely populated agrarian area spanning 19 Unions (196 Mauzas) in the northern districts of Gaibandha and Rangpur. The project site covers ~450 km2 and is home to a population of ~650,000 people, yielding a population density of over 1300 persons / km2. The area was selected as the project site based on its comparability to rural Bangladesh and, more broadly, South Asia with respect to levels of meternal and child nutrition, health, socioeconomic status and utilization of health-care services.

The study area was mapped to number, identify and locate the co-ordinates of over 160,000 households and over 90,000 landmarks of potential public health relevance (e.g. ponds, tubewells, markets, schools, and health care providers).Based on household maps, the study area was divided into nearly 600 household "clusters" that serve as units of randomization (and work assignments) for the field intervention trials. Households and geographical landmarks are routinely updated with a global positioning system (GPS) creating a geographic information system (GIS) to enhance logistics, supervision and enable geospatial epidemiological analyses.

JiVitA Intervention Trials

JiVitA-1: Maternal vitamin A or beta-carotene supplementation trial to reduce maternal and infant mortality

JiVitA-2: Impact of newborn vitamin A supplementation on infant mortality

JiVitA-3: Impact of antenatal multiple micronutrient supplementation on infant mortality

JiVitA-4: Complementary food supplements for reducing childhood undernutrition

Additional Resources

JiVitA Project Brief

JiVitA Journal