Environmental & Perinatal Exposures SIG

SIG Leaders

  • Dr Peter Franklin
  • Dr Shin Lee

List of Investigators

Local

  • Prof John Newnham, University of Western Australia
  • A/Professor Alexander Larcombe, Curtin University
  • Dr Kym Guelfi, University of Western Australia
  • Prof Andrew Whitehouse, Telethon Kids Institute
  • Prof Roger Hart, University of Western Australia
  • A/Prof Andrew Lewis, Murdoch University
  • Dr Tim Fairchild, Murdoch University
  • Prof Vera Morgan, University of Western Australia
  • Dr Stuart Watson, Murdoch University
  • Dr Brad Hayhow, University of Notre Dame
  • Dr Gavin Pereira, Curtin University
  • Dr Caitlin Wyrwoll, University of Western Australia
  • Dr Bryan Boruff, The University of Western Australia
  • Dr Gavin Pereira, Curtin University
  • Dr Jianghong Li, Curtin University
  • Dr Peter Franklin, University of Western Australia

National

  • Dr Lukar Thornton, Deakin University, Melbourne
  • Professor Peter Sly, University of Queensland
  • Dr Amanda Wheeler, Australian Catholic University
  • Dr Suzanne Mavoa, University of Melbourne

Overview of the current data resources available in the SIG area

Data resources include:

  • Pregnancy (18 and 34 weeks), obstetric, birthweight and neonatal outcome data
  • Maternal blood (serum at 18 and 34 weeks), cord blood (serum), placentas (sections)
  • Breastfeeding data; placental/foetal growth data
  • Maternal anthropomorphic/demographic/ethnicity/lifestyle/drug intake data
  • Maternal exercise/diet and pregnancy outcome data
  • Maternal/foetal blood endocrine disrupter measurements
  • Cord blood immunology/endocrine/steroid/neurosteroid profile
  • Home address’ have been geocoded at ages 14, 17, 20 and 22
  • School address’ at age 14 have been geocoded
  • Potential to link participant data with built environment data including food outlets, alcohol and tobacco outlets, other destinations, land use mix, street connectivity, residential density, greenness, park access and attributes, beach access, air pollution, traffic exposure, crime, housing type and age, indoor home environment, and indices such as the walkability index and liveability index
  • Social environment data includes: SEIFA index, social support, peer pressure, perceived neighbourhood safety, sense of community, work social environment, family structure, function, support and relationships etc

 

Overview of current/recent SIG activity

  • Obstetric Complications and Offspring Mental Health Outcomes (PMED23 approval)
  • Describing the relationship between prenatal growth and developmental outcomes in childhood
  • Effects of antenatal exposure to steroids (androgens, estrogens and neurosteroids) and endocrine disrupters (BPA, phthalates) on sexual development, neurodevelopment and behaviour
  • Impact of exposure to green space on youth health
  • Influence of the built environment on child health & development
  • Influence of the neighbourhood food environment on dietary intake and weight status in adolescents and young adults
  • Association between access to alcohol in the neighbourhood and (i) alcohol intake and (ii) mental health in adolescents and young adults

Outline of SIG plans for next 5 years

  • Expand the focus of use of data from pregnancy into adulthood and into the next generation (3 generations) to look at pregnancy influences from one generation to the next
  • Expand the focus of perinatal mental health and mental health measures in current and future data
  • Influence of the built environment on child health & development
  • Influence of the built food environment on dietary intake and weight status in adolescents and young adults
  • Access to sporting and recreational facilities and youth physical activity
  • Influence of the peer and family social environment on child health
  • Impact of social environment (familial level and more macro-level social, economic and political factors) on child health and development

Brief list of potential student/early career researcher projects

  • How does the perinatal environment (external exposures and internal modulators) influence paediatric, adolescent and later-life development?
  • How does antenatal and postnatal growth and development influence adult health, behaviour and disease risk?
  • What biomarkers can be measured/defined/interrogated that predict later-life physical and mental health and disease?
  • Can cutting-edge ‘omic’ technologies be exploited in archived samples to provide insights into maternal and neonatal health and development?
  • What are the intergenerational aspects of pregnancy and perinatal health?
  • What is the impact of socioeconomic/societal factors in the antenatal and perinatal period on offspring health and development?
  • Influence of the built environment on child health & development outcomes (physical activity, sedentary behaviour, sleep, mental health, weight status etc)
  • The relationship between nature contact and children’s health & development outcomes (physical activity, sedentary behaviour, sleep, mental health, weight status etc)
  • Tha microbiome and nature contact

Top 5-10 key findings (with reference)

  • Access to alcohol outlets influences alcohol consumption in young adults: Examining associations between liquor licences and alcohol consumption in Raine participants at 20 and 22-years, and whether changes in the licences between time-points influenced alcohol consumption, suggested that limiting liquor licences could contribute to a reduction in young adults’ alcohol intake.   Reference: Foster S, Trapp G, Hooper P, Oddy WH, Wood L, Knuiman M. 2017. Liquor landscapes: Does access to alcohol outlets influence alcohol consumption in young adults? Health and Place, 45:17-23.

List of indicative recent publications

  • Foster S, Trapp G, Hooper P, Oddy WH, Wood L, Knuiman M. 2017. Liquor landscapes: Does access to alcohol outlets influence alcohol consumption in young adults? Health and Place, 45:17-23.

List of current/recent grants

  • Christian, H. Wheeler, A, Trapp, G, Callan, A, Boruff, B, Heyworth, J, Larcombe, A, Pereira, G, Zhang, B, Franklin, P, Eikelboom, R. Exposure to Green Space: Impacts on Youth Health. Early Environment Research Focus Area Seeding Grant – Built Environment, Pollutants and Toxicants Working Group, Telethon Kids Institute.  $11,144.00
  • 2015; Trapp G. Built food environments and child health. Bendat Family Foundation, Children’s Research Scholarship.  $8,400.00
  • 2014-2020;  Trapp G. Examining the influence of neighbourhood food and alcohol environments on adolescent health. Early Career Fellowship, NHMRC #1073233.  $304,596.00
  • 2014-2020; Trapp G. Neighbourhood food environments: are they associated with dietary intake, alcohol consumption and adiposity in young people? Early Career Researcher Fellowship Support, The University of Western Australia #RA/1/1997/27.  $29,976.00

Other Data

The Raine Study has extensive data on behaviours, environment and social outcomes that can be linked with Built and Social Environment data.  For example, physical and mental health status and health behaviours.