An international research program on the associations between environmental stressors, climate, and health


Research within the MCC Collaborative Research Network is based on the premise of collaborative work and data sharing. The program is organized in separate sub-projects that address different research questions and are led by one or more research teams in collaboration with the others. The work consists of substantive analyses on specific research topics related to environmental epidemiology, complemented with methodological developments in analytical methods and study designs. The research activities within MCC Collaborative Research Network have already produced peer-reviewed publications in major epidemiological and medical journals, and have been disseminated in national and international conferences.

The work focuses on the related but different research areas. The main ones are:

Ambient temperature and mortality

  • Global assessment of the health effects of temperature on mortality.
  • Analysis of the geographical and temporal variation of temperature-related mortality risks and impacts.
  • Assessment of the effects of temperature variability and episodes of extreme weather (i.e. heat waves and cold spells) on mortality.
  • Evaluation of the optimal temperature across populations and climates, and its variation along space and time.
  • Comparison of different biometeorological metrics for assessing mortality risks.
  • Analysis of associations with specific mortality causes and age-specific risks.

Climate change and health

  • Projections of health impacts under different climate change scenarios.
  • Assessment of benefits from climate policies consistent with thresholds defined in the Paris Agreement.
  • Identification and quantitative analysis of potential drivers of adaptation and related adaptation policies.

Air pollution and mortality

  • Global assessment of the health effects of air pollution on mortality.
  • Analysis of various pollutants, such as particulate matter (PM10, PM2.5), ozone, nitrogen dioxide, and sulphur dioxide.
  • Analysis of the geographical and temporal variation of risks associated with air pollution.
  • Analysis of synergistic effects of air pollution and temperature.

Methodological development in environmental epidemiology

  • Advanced time series modelling tools, such as distributed lag non-linear models for assessing exposure-lag-response associations.
  • Development of flexible two-stage designs and extended meta-analytical models.
  • Models for identification of optimal temperature corresponding to minimum mortality risks.

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