What harmful chemicals are in pregnant people and how do they get there?
How are chemical exposures during pregnancy linked to future health problems in mothers and babies?
How can we reduce toxic chemicals in our homes and environment?
These are the questions the DREAM Study seeks to answer, and we need your help!
The goal of the DREAM Study (Discovering cancer Risks from Environmental contaminants And Maternal and child health) is to understand how harmful chemicals affect pregnancy and child health over time. We ask study participants to do a brief survey and donate small samples of blood, hair, urine, fingernail clippings, and umbilical cord blood when they deliver their child. We will then survey participants and their children about their use of consumer products, work and home environments, chemical exposures, and health outcomes over a five-year period.
Your participation in the DREAM Study will help advance scientific understanding about how chemicals affect human health and development. We are recruiting pregnant people in the nine San Francisco Bay Area counties as well as Fresno, Kings, Madera, and Tulare counties.
Recruiting pregnant women to participate in our study has been challenging since the COVID-19 pandemic began, in which pregnancy and births in the U.S. declined significantly, according to the CDC, and our researchers were unable to meet in person with pregnant women delivering in hospital settings. In-person restrictions have since been lifted, and we are now trying to provide pregnant people from diverse backgrounds the opportunity to participate in our ground-breaking DREAM Study, in cooperation with the National Institutes of Health (NIH).
Our study participants report that their motivation for contributing to our research is the desire to help scientists answer important questions that inform policy change to reduce harmful chemical exposures and improve the health of pregnant people and their babies.
Can you help us get the word out about the DREAM Study?
If you live in one of the nine San Francisco Bay Area counties (Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, Napa, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Solano and Sonoma) or in Fresno, Kings, Madera, and Tulare counties, or know pregnant people who do, please share this blog with them. The flyer below is available to post in local hospitals and health care clinics. We are also reaching out to people on social media and PRHE has just joined Instagram [@ucsf_prhe] to help get the word out.
We know, however, that there is no substitute for word-of-mouth among family and friends who can encourage pregnant people to learn more about the DREAM Study.
For more about DREAM, or to sign up to be a participant, please visit: https://prhe.ucsf.edu/join-our-research
And help us to spread the word!
About the Authors
Rachel Morello-Frosch PhD, MPH is a Professor in the Department of Environmental Science, Policy and Management at the University of California, Berkeley, School of Public Health.
Peggy Reynolds PhD, MPH is an epidemiologist and an Adjunct Professor in the Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics at the University of California, San Francisco.
Tracey J. Woodruff PhD, MPH is a Professor and Director of the UCSF Program on Reproductive Health and the Environment and the Environmental Research Translation in Health (EaRTH) Center.