April Webinar: Dr. Kelly Bakulski, “Environmental epigenetics in early life: The placenta and beyond”

kelly bakulskiOn Monday, April 10th at 1:00pm EST, PROTECT hosted the fifth webinar of the 2016-2017 academic schedule. The webinar was presented by Dr. Kelly Bakulski, Research Assistant Professor in the Department of Epidemiology at the University of Michigan School of Public Health and Taubman Scientist at the A. Alfred Taubman Medical Research Institute. The title of her presentation was “Environmental epigenetics in early life: The placenta and beyond.” View the recorded webinar here.

Learn more about Dr. Bakulski and her presentation by reading the following biography and abstract. 

Biography

Kelly Bakulski is a Research Assistant Professor in the Department of Epidemiology at the University of Michigan School of Public Health. She is also a Taubman Scientist at the A. Alfred Taubman Medical Research Institute. In her research, Kelly uses epigenetic epidemiology to test the combined genetic and environmental etiology of neurological disorders throughout the life course. She develops biomarker tools in highly collaborative studies with mechanistic toxicologists. She has studied mental health issues such as autism spectrum disorder, substance abuse, and Alzheimer’s disease. Kelly commonly assesses risk from exposure to heavy metals, endocrine disrupting chemicals, and nutritional metabolites. Kelly completed a postdoctoral fellowship at Johns Hopkins University in the Department of Epidemiology and Center for Epigenetics. She has a BS from Colby College and a PhD in Environmental Health Sciences from the University of Michigan.

 Abstract

Epigenetic modifications are important drivers of cellular differentiation and development. The placenta plays a key role in fetal programming and experiences vast cellular and epigenetic changes. Exposures in utero to toxicants have reproducible effects on placental and infant epigenetic status at birth. Epigenetic marks may persist into adulthood with consequences for later disease risk. This presentation will give an overview of epigenetic epidemiology in birth cohorts, discuss environmental and genetic effects on the epigenome, and explore future opportunities associated with epigenetic epidemiology.