Project 6 - Reproductive Biomarkers
Assessing the Adverse Effects of Environmental Hazards on the Reproductive Health in Human Populations
Dr. Bill Lasley, Professor Emeritus, Center for Health & the Environment
Dr. Benjamin Davis, Assistant Project Scientist, Center for Health and the Environment
This project addresses the real and potential deleterious effects of environmental hazards on human reproductive health, concentrating on environmental risks to human reproduction and development at the population-based level. The objectives are to develop and apply biomarker assays for evaluating human reproductive health at the population level. Risk to reproductive health is an area of growing public concern. Initially, this project is focusing on the development of biomarker assays that can be applied to non-clinical situations and permit epidemiological studies to include prospective evaluations of individual women’s reproductive health. The same biomarker assays validated for use in humans are also validated for use in the nonhuman primate animal model because the species-specific aspects of human reproduction often require the use of the laboratory macaque. These assays are then used to conduct in vivo experiments using the non-human primate animal model to fill important gaps in our understanding of specific environmental toxicants including targets of toxicity and exposure risks. The development of biomarkers for effect has subsequently led to the development and validation of biomarker assays for exposure to reproductive health risks and the identification of new environmental toxicants. All assays are adapted to automated platforms so that they are immediately available for use in all research and clinical centers. In vivo experiments conducted to confirm and characterize newly identified reproductive hazards and in vitro experiments using human cell lines are used to develop a deeper understanding of their mechanism(s) of action.
2005 - 2010 Project Period