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Dear Socnet members

The current issue of The Lancet contains an article which may be of interest to list members. It describes a cluster randomised trial showing the effectiveness of using peer-influencers to prevent smoking in 12-13 year olds in schools in England and Wales. Details of the paper are below - or you could read the media version, "Cool kids can help others avoid smoking" (

On a related topic, Justin Kirby (who occasionally posts on socnet) and I are interested in hearing about examples of the use of peer-influencer approaches, or anything similar, to bring about health-behavior change or achieve other public-health related goals. We'd be pleased to hear from anyone who knows of similar studies or examples.

with regards

Dr Iain Lang
Epidemiology & Public Health Group
Peninsula Medical School
Exeter EX25DW
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+44 (0)1392 421259

An informal school-based peer-led intervention for smoking prevention in adolescence (ASSIST): a cluster randomised trial
R Campbell, F Starkey, J Holliday, S Audrey, M Bloor, N Parry-Langdon, R Hughes and L Moore
The Lancet 2008; 371:1595-1602

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