Frank J Penedo, PhD
Program Head, Program in Biobehavioral Mechanisms of Health, Center for Behavior and Health
This program examines how behavior and social context (e.g., culture, SES) impact health via biological mechanisms. Members apply a lifespan approach to examine how early life experiences and adversity across development influence quality of life and health outcomes. They study the extent to which environmental influences, culture, ethnic specific stressors, emotional processing, risk and resiliency factors, and culturally driven illness representations affect biobehavioral mechanisms (e.g., endocrine regulation, inflammatory pathways, immunocompetence, neurobiology, gene x environment interactions, etc.) to impact quality of life and health outcomes. Finally, they apply this knowledge to understand health disparities and to optimize therapeutic and community based interventions.