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Personal profile

Research areas

I am an epidemiologist studying effects of environmental exposures on child and maternal health using observational data from cohort studies and registries.

My current research is focused mainly on understanding breastfeeding as a vulnerable function and assessing immunotoxic effects of environmental chemicals.

 

Breastfeeding as a vulnerable function

Breastfeeding is considered one of the most effective ways to improve child health and survival, and it further more improves maternal health, but most infants are not breastfed nearly as long as recommended by health authorities. Women often report experiences of early undesired weaning due to inadequate milk supply, but the causes of inadequate supply are rarely addressed. Breast development during puberty and pregnancy is regulated by a complex hormonal process, and – like fertility – thus vulnerable to endocrine disrupting chemicals. My research aims at identifying factors that affect women's ability to breastfeed.

 

Immunotoxicity of environmental chemicals

A well-functioning immune system is essential for human life, and even minor damages can have major effects on the immune system’s ability to fight off infectious pathogens that we are continuously exposed to.

Perfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) are a group of persistent grease and water-repellent chemicals widely used in consumer products such as food packaging, clothing, and furniture. We are all exposed to PFAS through contaminated food and water as well as dust from treated materials. PFAS, like other persistent chemicals, are transferred across the placenta and into breast milk, thereby causing peak exposures in infancy. My research focuses on how PFAS affect the child immune system, looking at morbidity and responses to childhood vaccinations.

Curriculum

2023 - Associate Professor, National Institute of Public Health, University of Southern Denmark

2021 - 2023 Assistant Professor, National Institute of Public Health, University of Southern Denmark

2021 (6 months) Postdoc, Section of Epidemiology, Department of Public Health, University of Copenhagen

2016 - 2021 Postdoc / Assistant Professor, Department of Environmental Medicine, University of Southern Denmark

2014 (4 months) Short Term Scholar, Harvard School of Public Health

2012 - 2016 Ph.D. student, Department of Environmental Medicine, University of Southern Denmark

2011 - 2012 Research assistant, National Research Centre for the Working Environment

2006 - 2016 Eksternal teacher/teaching assistant, Department of Biostatistics, University of Copenhagen

Education/Academic qualification

PhD, Epidemiology and Environmental Medicine, University of Southern Denmark

Award Date: 1. Nov 2016

MS Public Health, University of Copenhagen

Award Date: 11. Jun 2011

BS Public Health, University of Copenhagen

Award Date: 17. Jun 2008

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