Allison Appleton

Allison Appleton

Associate Professor, Department Chair
School of Public Health
Department of Epidemiology & Biostatistics
State University of New York, at Albany

Fellowship Project: Albany Infant and Mother Study (AIMS). 

Allison is a social epidemiologist with training in epigenetics, cardiovascular disease and neurodevelopment.  She received her doctoral degree from the Harvard School of Public Health and completed postdoctoral fellowships at Harvard and also at the Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth.  She brought her epidemiologic research skills and expertise in evaluating the psychosocial mechanisms linking social inequality to health outcomes to the fellowship. Through collaborative research and mentorship from our Fellowship Program, Allison built skills in community engagement and developed expertise around environmental exposure assessments for metals and air pollution.
As psychosocial stress and exposure to environmental contaminants tend to co-occur among disadvantaged groups, one project Allison launched during her fellowship was a study of prenatal metal exposure and maternal experiences of racial discrimination and stress in relation to infant health among a racially and socioeconomically diverse community in Albany, NY. In particular, she study epigenetic alterations as mechanisms that may help explain how prenatal stress and metal exposures can become biologically embodied and contribute to disparities in child growth and neurodevelopment.

Research Expertise

Allison has experience in the design, conduct, and analysis of cohort studies; and in developing psychosocial adversity and stress measures from archival data. She has expertise in measuring stress, mental health, positive psychosocial factors, positive health, resiliency, and biomarker analysis, including epigenetics; and statistical expertise in testing mediation, effect modification, longitudinal analysis, and clustered/complex data structures.

This information is accurate as of the fellowship year indicated for each fellow.