Health and Behaviour

Programme Overview

Lifestyle behaviours, such as tobacco, alcohol and caffeine use, exercise and diet, reflect the primary modifiable causes of morbidity and mortality in high income countries such as the UK. Health and Behaviour, led by Professor Marcus Munafò, focuses on understanding the relationships between such lifestyle behaviours and both physical and mental health outcomes. We use a range of methods (e.g., Mendelian randomization, negative control methods) to allow us to arrive at stronger conclusions regarding whether associations between these behaviours and these outcomes are likely to be causal and, if so, which direction they operate in. The next step is to explore the mechanisms that underlie these causal relationships, through human laboratory studies that allow us to investigate relevant cognitive and biological pathways. This understanding of mechanism in turn allows us to develop novel pharmacological and behavioural interventions to target these causal pathways, and improve physical and mental health outcomes at an individual and a population level.

Professor Munafò's group is part of the UK Centre for Tobacco and Alcohol Studies, and the NIHR School for Public Health Research.

Research Highlights 

Professor Marcus Munafò
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