The Centre for Arctic Health & Molecular Epidemiology functions as an integrated research unit headed by professor and director Eva C. Bonefeld-Jørgensen. In addition, there are currently 2 associated professors Manhai Long and Mandana Ghisari, 1 post doc, 2 research assistants, 2 PhD students and 1 technical assistant involved in the research activities.
The Centre for Arctic Health & Molecular Epidemiology unit focuses on environmental and occupational risk factors for human health both in the Arctic and non-Arctic areas. The epidemiology and mechanistic toxicology research includes risk factors such as endocrine disruptive compounds and heavy metals and their effects on the reproductive-, immune-, and neuro-endocrine systems. The studies focus on key factors such as steroid and other nuclear receptors, oxidative stress factors, genetic susceptibility and associated enzymes in in vitro (cell culture models) and ex vivo (human fluids) systems. The research includes development of new biomarkers of effect for e.g. gene-environment vs. epigenetic (DNA methylation), apoptosis/DNA repair and gene expressions.
The lab facilities for the Centre for Arctic Health & Molecular Epidemiology include mammalian cell culture laboratories with the needed equipment such as CO2 incubators, sterile bench, microscopes etc.. Instrumentation for general molecular biology and cellular oxidative stress analyses are available, facilities for SPE-HPLC extractions of human serum, Taq Man (Applied Biosystems) and Light Cycler for PCR or RT-Q-PCR and genotyping, Elisa Reader, luminometer and fluorometer for ER, AR and AhR gene-reporter analyses as well as fluorocytometer can be mentioned.
The Institute has a strong multidisciplinarity including professionals for epidemiology, biostatistics, global health, climate chambers and food nutrition. The Centre for Arctic Health & Molecular Epidemiology has close cooperation with labs in Denmark and abroad doing chemical analyses such as GC-MS and LC-MS/MS. The Centre for Arctic Health & Molecular Epidemiology unit collaborates with units at all Danish universities.
The Centre for Arctic Health and Molecular Epidemiology is managed by a director appointed by the Dean of the Faculty of Health Sciences, Aarhus University. Professor, director Eva C. Bonefeld-Jorgensen, expert in human toxicology and molecular biology, established and headed Molecular Epidemiology (previously Center for Molecular Toxicology [CMT]) for more than 20 years. She has a formal education in research management, more than 80 international peer-reviewed publications, several book chapters and national/international reports. High experiences in teaching at the university level, member of several professional (inter)national boards, coordinator of several national and international projects including presently the 5 year international and interdisciplinary project FETOTOX with partners from Denmark (including Greenland), USA, Norway and China. The main aim of FETOTOX is to evaluate the risk of in utero exposure to POPs and effects on fetal and child development, the risk of long term effects on the offspring’s neurodevelopment and the mothers’ fecundity. Eva C. Bonefeld-Jørgensen has been a partner in the EU supported projects; INUENDO, QLK4-CT-2001-00202 and ENDOMET; QLRT-2001-02637.