Laura N. Vandenberg

Associate Professor and Graduate Program Director
171C Goessmann
413-577-7405

lvandenberg@schoolph.umass.edu

Education: 

B.S., Cornell University, 2003; Ph.D., Tufts University School of Medicine, 2007; Postdoctoral Fellow & Research Associate, The Forsyth Institute Center for Regenerative & Developmental Biology and Harvard University School of Dental Medicine, 2007-2008; Postdoctoral Fellow, Tufts University, Department of Biology and Center for Regenerative & Developmental Biology, 2008-2013

Area(s) of Specialization: 

endocrine disruptors, hazard assessment, developmental biology, endocrinology

Research Description: 

My research explores how early life exposures to chemicals and chemical mixtures can predispose individuals to diseases that manifest later in life. Classical toxicology often focuses on how fetal chemical exposures can produce birth defects, an important part of chemical safety. My work instead addresses how low doses of chemicals during critical windows of development can alter gene expression, cell differentiation, and tissue organization in subtle ways that can lead to adult diseases such as cancer, obesity, and infertility. I am specifically interested in the class of chemicals termed ‘endocrine disruptors’ and have worked extensively with chemicals used as plasticizers and flame retardants. My work also focuses on how traditional toxicology assays have failed to identify a number of ubiquitous endocrine disruptors, and how current risk assessment practices can be improved in the study and regulation of this class of chemicals.

Key Publications: 

LaPlante CD, Catanese MC, Bansal R, Vandenberg LN. 2017. Bisphenol S alters the lactating mammary gland and nursing behaviors in mice exposed during pregnancy and lactation. Endocrinology. 158(10): 3448-61.

Catanese MC, Vandenberg LN. 2017. Low doses of 17α-ethinyl estradiol alter the maternal brain and induce stereotypies in CD-1 mice exposed during pregnancy and lactation. Reproductive Toxicology. 73: 20-29.

Catanese MC, Vandenberg LN. 2017. Bisphenol S (BPS) alters maternal behavior and brain in mice exposed during pregnancy and lactation and their daughters. Endocrinology. 158(3): 516-530.

Kolla S, Pokharel A, Vandenberg LN. 2017. The mouse mammary gland as a sentinel organ: distinguishing ‘control’ populations with diverse environmental histories. Environmental Health. 16(1):25.

Vandenberg LN. 2016. Reform of the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA): An Endocrine Society policy perspective. Endocrinology. 157(12): 4514-15.