northeastern university seal

Northeastern University has received a $9.9 million grant from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to study the impact of exposure to environmental contamination on preterm birth rates and to develop sustainable solutions. PROTECT—which includes North­eastern, the Uni­ver­sity of Puerto Rico, and the Uni­ver­sity of Michigan—is co-directed by Akram Alshawabkeh and Jose F. Cordero, dean of the Grad­uate School of Public Health at the Uni­ver­sity of Puerto Rico. The inter­dis­ci­pli­nary team includes fac­ulty mem­bers from Northeastern’s Col­lege of Engi­neering, Bouvé Col­lege of Health Sci­ences, and Col­lege of Social Sci­ences and Human­i­ties. To sup­port its mis­sion, PROTECT also engages with gov­ern­ment agen­cies and non­profit orga­ni­za­tions such as March of Dimes and the Silent Spring Institute.

The latest grant from the NIH will fund the next phase of a study of the extent to which exposure to commonly found chemicals, such as phtha­lates, is related to the extremely high preterm birthrate in Puerto Rico.