There is now substantial evidence that environmental conditions, particularly during fetal and early post-natal life, can affect both the physiology and behaviour of an individual into adulthood. Moreover, recent studies have also shown that some environmental stimuli can cause epigenetic changes which are then passed on to offspring resulting in transgenerational effects. The focus of my research is examining how exposure to chemicals in the environment, at different life stages, can affect later health including reproductive function and cardiovascular disease. Humans are exposed to a plethora of chemicals throughout life and such chemical exposure (especially during sensitive periods of development) has been shown to adversely affect many physiological systems. The mechanisms underlying this are still poorly understood. My research is focussed on determining the mechanisms/genes that are affected by everyday chemical exposure and how this can affect long term health. I am also involved in raising the awareness of potential sources and risks of chemical exposure during pregnancy on human fetal development, especially those associated with cigarette smoking (in collaboration with Prof Paul Fowler, Institute of Medical Sciences, University of Aberdeen).
Abstracts this author is presenting: