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Welcome to The Yale Center for Perinatal, Pediatric and Environmental Epidemiology (Yale CPPEE)

Mission Statement

The mission of the Center is to promote the health of women and children through epidemiologic research investigating the impact of environmental, genetic and clinical factors on pregnancy, birth and childhood.

The Yale Perinatal Epidemiology Unit (PEU) was founded in 1979 by then Dean of the Yale School of Medicine, Robert Berliner, to support research in this area being conducted by the departments of Epidemiology and Public Health, Obstetrics and Gynecology, and Pediatrics (especially Neonatology). The founding Director was Professor Michael B. Bracken. The mission of the PEU was stated in the preface to the 1984 textbook Perinatal Epidemiology (MB Bracken Ed., Oxford University Press) which first described this area of scholarship:

         “It has long been recognized that events during pregnancy influence the health and well-being of the newborn. This recognition, and the obvious need to provide integrated care to both mother and baby, has led to the establishment of perinatology as the medical specialty that bridges the gap between the obstetrician’s concern for the pregnant woman and the care of her newborn by a pediatrician. Only recently have we begun to understand that events occurring long before pregnancy, sometimes inter-generationally, can affect our reproductive capabilities. We also now know that vicissitudes in our own uterine existence may profoundly influence the rest of our lives both physically and behaviorally. Population based studies of these phenomena fall within the domain of perinatal epidemiology, which has evolved into a major subspecialty of epidemiology and an important component of perinatal medicine.”

More than seven million children in the United States suffer from asthma with the highest prevalence in inner-city areas. While some cases of asthma are believed to have genetic origins, many cases are due to exposure to environmental irritants such as air pollution, pet dander, and mold.

Asthma is the most common chronic condition among children in the United States. While the prevalence of childhood asthma in Olmsted County, Minnesota, exceeds the national average, the impact of air pollutants on the risk of asthma severity among Olmsted County children has never been assessed.

The goal of The Yale WATER Study is to understand the impacts (if any) of unconventional oil and gas development on drinking-water quality in Pennsylvania and Ohio, while evaluating other factors that may influence drinking water chemistry in these locations.