Skip to main content Accessibility help

The Norwegian Twin Registry

  • Thomas S. Nilsen (a1), Ingunn Brandt (a1), Per Magnus (a1) and Jennifer R. Harris (a1)


Norway has a long-standing tradition in twin research, but the data collected in several population-based twin studies were not coordinated centrally or easily accessible to the scientific community. In 2009, the Norwegian Twin Registry was established at the Norwegian Institute of Public Health (NIPH) in Oslo with the purpose of creating a single research resource for Norwegian twin data. As of today, the Norwegian Twin Registry contains 47,989 twins covering birth years 1895–1960 and 1967–1979; 31,440 of these twins consented to participate in health-related research. In addition, DNA from approximately 4,800 of the twins is banked at the NIPH biobank and new studies are continually adding new data to the registry. The value of the Norwegian twin data is greatly enhanced by the linkage opportunities offered by Norway's many nationwide registries, spanning a broad array of medical, demographic, and socioeconomic information.


Corresponding author

address for correspondence: Jennifer R. Harris, Division of Epidemiology, Norwegian Institute of Public Health, P.O. Box 4404 Nydalen, Oslo, Norway. E-mail:


Hide All
Berg, K. (1973). Studies of polymorphic traits for the characterization of populations. The populations of Scandinavia. Israel Journal of Medical Sciences, 9 (9), 11471155.
Bergem, A. L. (2002). Norwegian twin registers and Norwegian twin studies — An overview. Twin Research, 5 (5), 407414.
Dahl, C., Stoltenberg, C., Magnus, T., Høyer, A., Skjesol, P., Vassenden, A., Skjesol, P. O., Vassenden, A., Skau, P., Berntsen, G., Kapstad, K., Hagen, E., Opdal, V., Viste, M., & Vollset, S. E. (2009). Gode Helseregistre — Bedre Helse. Oslo: Sekretariatet for Nasjonalt helseregisterprosjekt, Folkehelseinstituttet.
Gervin, K., Vigeland, M. D., Mattingsdal, M., Hammerø, , Nygård, H., Olsen, A. O., Brandt, I., Harris, J. R., Undlien, D. E., & Lyle, R. (2012). DNA methylation and gene expression changes in monozygotic twins discordant for psoriasis: Identification of epigenetically dysregulated genes involved in immune response. PloS Genetics, 8 (1), e1002454.
Harris, J. R., Magnus, P., & Tambs, K. (2002). The Norwegian Institute of Public Health Twin Panel: A description of the sample and program of research. Twin Research, 5 (5), 415423.
Harris, J. R., Magnus, P., & Tambs, K. (2006). The Norwegian Institute of Public Health twin program of research: An update. Twin Research and Human Genetics, 9 (6), 858864.
Irgens, L. M. (2000). The Medical Birth Registry of Norway. Epidemiological research and surveillance throughout 30 years. Acta Obstetricia et Gynecologica Scandinavica, 79 (6), 435439.
Irgens, L. M. (2002). The discovery of the leprosy bacillus [published in Norwegian]. Tidsskr Nor Laegeforen 122 (7), 708709.
Iversen, T., Tretli, S., & Kringlen, E. (2001). An epidemiological study of cancer in adult twins born in Norway 1905–1945. British Journal of Cancer, 84 (11), 14631465.
Magnus, P., Berg, K., & Nance, W. E. (1983). Predicting zygosity in Norwegian twin pairs born 1915–1960. Clinical Genetics, 24 (2), 103112.
Skytthe, A., Kyvik, K., Holm, N. V., Vaupel, J. W., & Christensen, K. (2002). The Danish twin registry: 127 Birth cohorts of twins. Twin Research, 5 (5), 352357.
Statistics Norway. (2011). Statistics Norway. Retrieved from



Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between <date>. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Usage data cannot currently be displayed