Amsterdam Neuroscience congratulates Meike Bartels on her ERC consolidator grant

URC professor Meike Bartels receives a €2 million ERC consolidator grant for research into causes of differences in happines and well-being.

The grant gives her the opportunity to investigate the dynamic interplay between an individual’s genetic make-up, epigenetic make-up, and (social) environmental exposure.

Environmental and social influences on happiness and well-being
Over the past year, Meike Bartels and her team made important progress in quantifying and identifying the genetic sources of differences in well-being by identifying the first genetic and epigenetic variants related to well-being. These earlier studies form a crucial stepping stone to achieve the next level of under­standing how genetic sources are amplified or dampened by environmental and social factors and, conversely, how genetic pathways modulate environmental effects and social interactions. Bartels: “To initiate this next step, we need a better and more complete picture of environmental and social exposure. In this project we will identify, quantify, and integrate static and dynamic environmental and social exposures to build the well-being exposome”.

The dynamic interplay between genes and environment
Off course it is in the end the interplay between genes and environment that causes the differences in happiness and well-being. Therefore, in her ERC project Bartels and her team aim to understand the multi-layer interplay of the genome, the epigenome, and the exposome, and integrate the empirical findings into a novel comprehensive framework of Well-being. Bartels: “This framework can then serve as a strong empirically-based foundation for the development of interdisciplinary academic theories and health, social, and economic policies to maintain, facilitate, and build WB”

Source: Website Faculty of Behavioural and Movement Sciences