Research in Children’s Environmental Health
Children are extremely sensitive to toxic exposures in the environment. Exposures to even low levels of toxic chemicals can affect health both during childhood and across the entire human life span. The good news is that the diseases caused by toxic chemicals can be prevented. Scientific discovery is the key to understanding and preventing these diseases.
At the Children’s Environmental Health Center (CEHC), our primary goal is to discover how toxic chemicals in the environment cause disease in children. Through cutting-edge clinical and epidemiological investigations, we are exploring the environmental origins of asthma, learning disabilities, autism, obesity, birth defects, and childhood cancer. We study the effects of early-life exposures to phthalates, bisphenol A, organophosphates, and heavy metals on children's health, and we support laboratory research that generates new knowledge of the molecular and genetic mechanisms of disease.
As part of our research efforts, we are exploring how environmental factors may interact with the human genome to cause disease and to produce changes in gene expression that are passed down through successive generations. We are also systematically mapping and controlling hazardous environmental exposures to children in East Harlem, our home community.
The ultimate goal of all our research in the Children’s Environmental Health Center is to generate new scientific discoveries that we can turn into better treatments for sick children and evidence-based blueprints for the prevention of environmental disease.