Caren Weinhouse conducts cross-disciplinary research on global environmental health focused on environmental toxicology, epidemiology, and epigenetics. She received her PhD in Environmental Health Sciences and MPH in Occupational and Environmental Epidemiology from University of Michigan School of Public Health.
Her doctoral research contributed to the growing consensus that epigenetic responses to the chemical, nutritional, and social environments underlie the Developmental Origins of Health and Disease, or persistent environmental programming in early life that impacts risk profiles for adult health outcomes. Her dissertation focused on risk for liver tumors in adult mice following prenatal exposure to the endocrine disruptor bisphenol A, or BPA.
In her postdoctoral fellowship, she is integrating her background in environmental toxicology and epigenetics with larger conceptual frameworks in environmental health. Her research explores the role of environmental change in population health outcomes in Madre de Dios, Peru, and incorporates exposure assessment and epigenetic and health outcomes related to methyl mercury exposure in artisanal and small-scale gold mining communities in the region. In this work, she defines environmental exposures broadly to include not only environmental toxicants, like heavy metals, but also food insecurity, social instability, climate change and land use and land cover change.