Funded by the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, NIEHS award P30 ES006096.
The Center for Environmental Genetics is one of the nation's 1st environmental health science research programs and the region's only center of its kind. Our vision: To continue to be a global leader in research on gene-environment interactions (GXE) and its translation. Our mission: To conduct innovative, multidisciplinary GxE research and translate understanding of risk stratification to disease prevention via community empowerment. Our work serves the advancement of precision medicine and precision environmental health as we aim to make disease prevention and treatment as empirical as possible by taking account of an individual’s genomics, pre-existing conditions, exposures, and potential risk factors -- be they unique to that individual or the population segment in which he or she belongs (e.g., age group, race, ethnicity, sex, place of residence, etc.).
The CEG's nationally and internationally recognized researchers devote special attention to the early origins of disease; windows of susceptibility (e.g., in utero, puberty); the interplay between genetics and epigenetics; genomics, epigenomics and other -omics (proteomics, metabolomics, metagenomics, and metallomics); the influence of lifestyle modifiers such as diet or stress on epigenetic reprogramming; and, finally, the data void related to continuous lifelong editing of early developmental programming and the potential for transgenerational effects. More about us here.
The CEG is led by Director Susan M. Pinney, Ph.D., FACE. A Fellow of the American College of Epidemiology, Pinney has conducted research in environmental epidemiology for more than 35 years. She has served as the chief epidemiologist of the Fernald Medical Monitoring program (predecessor to the Fernald Community Cohort) since its inception, responsible for yearly data collection and periodic examinations on almost 10,000 cohort members, including the collection and storage of 160,000 biospecimens. Dr. Pinney also has been a member of the NCI-funded Genetic Epidemiology of Lung Cancer Consortium (GELCC) since its inception in 1997, and has been Principal Investigator on the NIEHS R01 Longitudinal study of endocrine disrupting chemical exposure and the early hormonal milieu of girls around the time of thelarche (8/15/18–6/30/22). This study has yielded more than 60 peer-reviewed articles to date; e.g., in Reproductive Toxicology, Pediatric Research, Journal of Adolescent Health, et al. In April 2022, the Greater Cincinnati Earth Coalition presented Dr. Pinney with its Environmental Teacher Award. Each year, the coalition honors individuals in the Cincinnati area who have excelled as role models for sustainability and environmental study.
CEG leaders gladly engage with concerned citizens regarding questions of environmental exposures human health, and journalists frequently call upon CEG-funded investigators for their scientific expertise. In this UC Academic Health Center news story, Dr. Pinney is seen during an WVXU interview discussing potential exposure to per- and poly-fluoroalkyl compounds (PFAS) through Ohio River drinking water sources. Byline: UC Public Information Officer Cedric Ricks, 2020 Jan 8. Other CEG members recently sharing their expertise in the news include CEG New Investigator Awardee (2018-2020) Katherine Burns, Ph.D. (explaining the importance of endometriosis research to the public) and 2019 CEG Pilot Awardee Senu Apewokin, M.D. (discussing CoVID19).