The National Institute of Environmental Health Services (NIEHS) recently awarded Westat a cooperative agreement, one of multiple grants awarded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) this year. Westat’s role will be to act as the Coordinating Center for the Children’s Health Exposure Analysis Resource (CHEAR), which will provide the NIH-funded research community access to laboratory and statistical analyses to add or expand environmental exposures as a component of their research.
“Technology advances have become a powerful driver in studying and understanding the start and spread of disease,” said NIH Director Francis S. Collins, M.D., Ph.D. “These projects will expand the toolbox available to researchers to improve our ability to characterize environmental exposures, understand how environmental exposures affect in utero development and function, and bolster the infrastructure for exposure research.”
Environmental exposures, which range from chemical and biological factors such as air pollution, pesticides, and infectious diseases, to psychosocial factors such as education, stress, and neglect, are a leading cause of morbidity and mortality for mothers and children worldwide. This work will enhance the next phase of research on the effects of environmental exposures on child health and development.