Research

Faculty members, post-doctoral researchers, and students in the Department of Environmental Health conduct research on a number of environmental health topics. Our work spans epidemiology, exposure science, toxicology, and risk assessment, and generally falls into one of four thematic areas:

  • Exposure to complex mixtures and health across the life course: where we live, work, and play
  • Translating environmental health to action through policy-relevant research
  • Community-based environmental health: Addressing issues of environmental justice in collaboration with vulnerable populations
  • Interdisciplinary research connecting basic and applied environmental health science

We do work both in the Boston area and around the globe, including in India, China, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Mexico, and Italy. Some of the specific topic areas of interest to our department include:

  • Air pollution
  • Climate change
  • Chemical mixtures
  • Drinking water
  • Exposure science
  • Geographic information systems and spatial analysis
  • Housing and the indoor environment
  • Infectious disease
  • Molecular toxicology and risk assessment
  • Neurobehavior
  • Noise exposures
  • Occupational exposures
  • Social and physical environment

For a list of ongoing research projects, please look here.

Along with individual research projects, we are involved in multiple research centers and groups. The Departmental of Environmental Health includes the following:

  • Boston University Superfund Research Program (SRP)
    • BUSRP is an interdisciplinary program that conducts and communicates research on the impacts of improperly managed hazardous wastes. Specifically, we study the effects of exposures to substances commonly encountered in hazardous waste disposal on reproduction and development in humans and wildlife.
  • Center for Research on Environmental and Social Stressors in Housing Across the Life Course (CRESSH)
    • CRESSH is a partnership among the Boston University School of Public Health, the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Children’s HealthWatch, Health Resources in Action, and GreenRoots that studies housing-related environmental health disparities in low-income communities and throughout Massachusetts.
  • Gulf War Illness Consortium (GWIC)
    • GWIC is investigating key aspects of Gulf War Illness. The primary goals of GWIC are to identify biomarkers of Gulf War Illness that can be used in diagnosis and for identifying mechanisms that can be targeted for treatment trials.
  • Exposure Biology Research Group (EBRG)
    • EBRG is an interdisciplinary research group that focuses primarily on the use of biological markers to assess environmental and occupational exposures via multiple pathways with respect to exposure-related disease.