Exposure to physical, social, or nutritional stress during development can have long-lasting effects on health. Yet, we do not understand 1) the mechanistic basis of these effects; 2) why individuals vary in their response to a given stressor; and 3) how early life stress impacts health in diverse settings (e.g., outside of the Global North). These knowledge gaps limit our ability to both identify susceptible individuals and to develop effective, equitable intervention strategies. To address these gaps, Amanda Lea uses anthropological and genomic approaches to study early life effects on molecular processes and health in international populations experiencing rapid sociocultural change. She complements this field-based work with lab-based experiments to study how early life effects “get under the skin” to impact cellular function.
- Fellow, Searle Scholars Program, 2022
- Frank Kelly Dean’s Faculty Fellow in Climate Studies, Vanderbilt University, 2022
- Postdoctoral Fellow, Helen Hay Whitney Foundation, 2018
- Lea, A. J., Martins, D., Kamau, J., Gurven, M., & Ayroles, J. F. (2020). Urbanization and market integration have strong, nonlinear effects on cardiometabolic health in the Turkana. Science Advances, 6(43), eabb1430.
- Lea, A. J., Archie, E. A., Tung, J., & Alberts, S. C. (2018). Developmental plasticity: bridging research in evolution and human health. Evolution, Medicine, and Public Health, 1, 162–175.
- Lea, A. J., Vockley, C., Johnston, R., Del Carpio, C., Barreiro, L., Reddy, T., & Tung, J. (2018). Genome-wide quantification of the effects of DNA methylation on human gene regulation. eLife, 7, e37513.
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