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More to obesity than meets the eye, new vision for Brunel's research into environment and health

Juliette Legler

Dutch-Canadian toxicologist Professor Juliette Legler has joined the College of Health & Life Sciences at Brunel University London, as a Professor of Toxicology and Environmental Health. Juliette will also lead the Environment and Health research theme in the Institute of Environment, Health and Societies.

A successful fundraiser, Legler has brought €4million in the last five years: she was coordinator of the EU OBELIX and Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research projects, which study possible links between early life stage exposure to endocrine disrupting chemicals, and the development of obesity later in life.

Legler explains, “Links between chemicals in the environment and obesity have been identified by scientists for a decade. Obesity is a hormonal disease, and those endocrine disrupting chemicals which affect our metabolism would play a significant role. In light of this, the calories-in and the calories-out paradigm which has dictated how we perceive and fight obesity, shows that we really know very little about this multifactorial and complex disease. There is more to this disorder than meets the eye.”

Previously at VU University in Amsterdam, Legler brings a wealth of knowledge to the Institute at Brunel headed by Professor Susan Jobling and prominent in the study of the impact of chemicals on human and aquatic health. In addition, she participates in various advisory committees such as the Dutch Health Council and Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD).


Dean of the College, Paul Hellewell and Professor Jobling welcomed Juliette, “We are delighted to welcome Juliette to Brunel. She is an extraordinary scientist and leader and the perfect choice to lead the Environment and Health Theme. Juliette will bring enormous vision and ambition to the College - and will cement the Institute’s place at the heart of Environment and Health research in the UK."


Professor Legler will be discussing her research in her role as a panel member in the Big Question: What is really to blame for the obesity epidemic? At Brunel University London on 27 April along with Professor Andreas Kortenkamp.