Center for Environmental Health Sciences

The Center for Environmental Health Sciences (CEHS) consists of approximately 39 research groups across MIT and one group at the Broad Institute that work to address the effects of hazardous agents in the environment on humans and the human ecosystem. A signature element of our research portfolio is the integration of science, engineering and policy to solve complex problems in environmental health. The center is funded primarily by the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, which is part of the National Institutes of Health.

The CEHS program encompasses five research themes:

  • Biological Responses to Environmental Exposures
  • Chemistry and Transport of Air and Water Pollution
  • Environmental and Microbial Interactions in Human Health
  • Engineering Exposure Reduction Solutions
  • Technologies and Quantitative Tools for Environmental Health

Traction on our research themes is enabled by four Facilities Cores, which provide state-of-the-art technology or approaches to research problems in the following areas:

  • animal models;
  • bioanalytical;
  • genomics and informatics; and
  • integrative health sciences.

CEHS runs a robust pilot project program that stimulates integration of new ideas and early-stage investigators into the CEHS mission. The center also has a global environmental health program, several seminar and poster presentation activities, and a career development program. Lastly, a central component of our mission is to engage our local community and partners bi-directionally in activities organized through our Community Outreach Education and Engagement Core.

Graduate and undergraduate courses dealing with toxicology and environmental health are offered mainly through theĀ Department of Biological Engineering, which manages the MIT undergraduate minor in toxicology and environmental health. CEHS partners with many departments in the Schools of Science and Engineering to create cross-disciplinary opportunities in environmental health science and engineering. The PhD program offered by the Department of Biological Engineering integrates chemistry, molecular biology, and genetics with bioengineering approaches to the understanding of how organisms respond to environmental agents. CEHS works in close partnership with the MIT Superfund Research Program, and manages a T32 Training Grant in Environmental Toxicology, which supports graduate students and postdoctoral researchers, and offers a robust Responsible Conduct of Research program.

For further information, email the CEHS headquarters or visit the CEHS website.