Environmental Epigenetics

Epigenetic changes control the way genetic information is expressed without altering genetic codes stored in DNA. Environmental exposures can induce epigenetic changes, but the extent of epigenetic damage depends on life history stages of the organism exposed. Our laboratory is trying to understand how environmental stressors (chemical or non-chemical) can induce epigenetic changes that result in adverse health outcomes or disease. Utilizing animal models (fish and rodents), cell co-cultures (normal cells and organoids), human tissue samples, and population-based studies, we are trying to pinpoint how epigenetic changes lead to harmful health effects, which could perhaps be passed on to future generations. Research is no FUN without “D” in it, so we are seeking research FUNDS (US federal and/or private foundations) to identify epigenetic biomarkers that may explain past exposures and predict future diseases.

Current projects include basic science of germ cell epigenetic programming and epigenotoxicity of environmental stressors such as, pharmaceuticals, pesticides, bisphenol A, bisphenol S, fire retardants, marijuana (including its metabolites), and engineered nanoparticles in germ cells.


Interested in research?

Our laboratory is seeking graduate students (MS and PhD) to participate in environmental epigenetics and transgenerational health research. Undergraduate students (sophomores and juniors) can register for Bio-499 research credit. All interested persons should contact Dr. Ramji Bhandari (for further details.  If you are a potential graduate (Ph.D.) student and would like to apply for a fellowship through philanthropic foundations, NSF or NIH, please contact me ahead of time.

Recent News

Presenting at 2019 SETAC, Toronto, Canada

Dr. Bhandari and Deborah Killian, an undergraduate BIO-499 research student, will be presenting their papers at the 40th annual meeting […]

Posted on October 31, 2019

Sourav Chakraborty joined Bhandari Group

Sourav Chakraborty recently joined the Bhandari group as a graduate student. Sourav’s research is focused on mechanisms underlying transgenerational inheritance […]

Posted on August 16, 2019

Dr. Bhandari to present at Epigenetic Inheritance Symposium in Zurich, Switzerland

Dr. Bhandari has been invited to give a talk at Epigenetic Inheritance Symposium in Zurich, Switzerland in the week of […]

Posted on August 7, 2019


"Our lab is a part of Environmental Health Sciences Graduate Program at the UNCG Department of Biology. Our graduate students have opportunities to specialize in a wide ranges of topics from ecosystem health to transgenerational organismal health "