Leonie K. Elsenburg

Leonie K. Elsenburg

Assistant Professor

My research focuses on the association between childhood adversity and health in later life. I am interested in whether and how adversity in childhood, such as exposure to poverty, illness or death of a family member and parental divorce, relates to physical health and social outcomes.

Primary fields of research

Primary outcomes of interest are obesity, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, mental health, educational attainment and labour market attachment. Childhood adversity is hypothesized to be associated with these outcomes through behavioral, biological and mental health mechanisms. In my work, I place special emphasis on examination of exposure to multiple types of childhood adversity over the life course and on modeling longitudinal trajectories of both exposure and outcomes. In addition, I examine mediating pathways to aid knowledge on possible targets for intervention.

Current research

Currently, I am involved in the DANLIFE project. DANLIFE is a Danish nationwide register-based cohort study in which objective and prospective information on yearly exposure to adversity over childhood is combined with objective information on hospitalizations, disease outcomes and mortality in young adulthood. Within the project, I specifically focus on modeling exposure to multiple types of adversity over the course of childhood, identifying subgroups with differential exposure to childhood adversity and examining the association between exposure to childhood adversity and disease and social outcomes in young adulthood.

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