Dr. Meghan Davis, an assistant professor in the department of environmental health and engineering at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, received a $305,000 two-year grant from the National Institutes of Allergy and Infectious Diseases to study the effects of moving via a Housing Mobility Program on house environment and child airway microbial communities.
Inner-city children with asthma often experience worse disease when they are exposed to allergens and other biological products in their home environments. Dr. Davis and her team hypothesize that microbial exposures — such as bacterial and fungal communities — contribute to asthma morbidity and that these exposures change when families of a child with asthma are empowered to move from the inner city to a low-poverty neighborhood through a housing mobility program.
Dr. Davis’ team will study the microbial communities of the family’s home before and after the move, in order to relate how home environmental changes to changes in the child’s upper airway. This will help them explore whether or not changes in microbial exposures are associated with improvements in asthma. The work through this grant will help improve the researchers’ understanding of drivers and disparities in asthma, and how home environments influence asthma morbidity among low-income children.
Dr. Davis is interested in the roles of biological exposures in asthma and other respiratory diseases.