Australian males experience poorer health compared with Australian females. They have a shorter life expectancy and are at greater risk of developing health problems such as lung cancer, heart diseases, respiratory diseases and stroke. These outcomes not only affect males, but also have a significant impact on their partners, children, families and society.
Twins Research Australia have two projects planned to address factors contributing to poor health outcomes for males.
First, the Men’s Health questionnaire will ask about a range of health and lifestyle topics including: life events, mental health, fertility, alcohol use, social supports, family and work life. Members of Twins Research Australia will be approached to participate in the survey. The data will be available in a de-identified format for ethically and TRA approved research projects.
Second, a collaborative project will look at how environments, encountered by men of reproductive age modify their sperm, thereby affecting the next generation. We plan to analyse sperm quality and epigenetics – the molecular marks on our genes that can “record” environmental exposures. Studying twins allows a clean dissection of the effects of environment (nurture), while keeping genetics (nature) the same, or similar.
Professor John Hopper, TRA Director, University of Melbourne
Associate Professor Jeffrey Craig, TRA Deputy Director, Deakin University
Dr Katrina Scurrah, Statistician
Janine Lam, TRA RA, University of Melbourne
Professor Anthony Hannan, Florey Institute of Neuroscience and Mental Health
Dr Terence Peng, Florey Institute of Neuroscience and Mental Health
Professor Robert McLachlan, Hudson Institute of Medical Research
Dr Naomi Priest, Centre for Social Research and Methods, Australian National University
Professor David Handlesman, The University of Sydney
NHMRC Centre of Research Excellence Grant
Faculty Research Themes
School Research Themes
Prevention and management of non-communicable diseases (including cancer), and promotion of mental health, Data science, health metrics and disease modeling, Disparities, disadvantage and effective health care, Screening and early detection of disease
For further information about this research, please contact the research group leader.
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