PhD candidates are joining an outstanding PhD program

Another example of our thriving young scientists under the supervision of Alexandra Schneider in her research group "Environmental Risks":

left to right: Wenli Ni, Nikolaos Nikolaou, Masna Rai, Yueli Yao, Mahnaz Badpa

The PhD Medical Research in Epidemiology and Public Health known as PhD-EPH is an international and interdisciplinary structured 3-year PhD program under the Pettenkofer School of Public Health and the Munich Medical Research School. This program is dedicated to students from the fields of Genetic, Molecular and Clinical Epidemiology, Clinical Trials and Translational Medicine, Clinical and Evidence-based Prevention, Health Services Research, Health Economics and Evidence-based Public Health. Throughout the PhD program, the PhD candidates will be taking part in advanced methodological courses, various national and international conferences, and other courses to develop transferable professional skills.

Nikolaos Nikolaou, Wenli Ni, Yueli Yao, Mahnaz Badpa, and Masna Rai - all from the working group "Environmental Risks" led by Dr. Alexandra Schneider - started the program this month. All five PhD candidates are involved in remarkable international and national projects and studies like HI-CAM, FR1DA, EXHAUSTION, and the KORA Cohort. They will be investigating the impact of environmental exposures on cardio-metabolic function, cognitive function, mental health, cardiopulmonary mortality and morbidity, and other metabolites and blood markers as well as the influence of environmental factors and neighborhood characteristics on Type 1 Diabetes in children.

Their working group leader Dr. Alexandra Schneider is very proud of her students and is looking forward to their contribution.



Dr. Alexandra Schneider
Institute of Epidemiology
Helmholtz Zentrum München – Deutsches Forschungszentrum für Gesundheit und Umwelt (GmbH)
Ingolstädter Landstr. 1
D-85764 Neuherberg
Tel. +49 89 3187 3512


As German Research Center for Environmental Health, Helmholtz Zentrum München pursues the goal of developing personalized medical approaches for the prevention and therapy of major common diseases such as diabetes mellitus, allergies and lung diseases. To achieve this, it investigates the interaction of genetics, environmental factors and lifestyle. The Helmholtz Zentrum München has about 2,300 staff members and is headquartered in Neuherberg in the north of Munich. Helmholtz Zentrum München is a member of the Helmholtz Association, a community of 19 scientific-technical and medical-biological research centers with a total of about 37,000 staff members. 

The Institute of Epidemiology (EPI) assesses genetic, environmental and lifestyle risk factors which jointly determine the occurrence of major chronic diseases. The focus is on the development and progression of metabolic, respiratory and allergic diseases, as well as heart diseases and mental health. The goal is to understand the molecular underpinning of disease better and to translate this knowledge into personalized approaches of prevention as well as polices to improve health. Research builds on the unique resources of the KORA cohort, the KORA myocardial infarction registry, and the KORA aerosol measurement station. Aging-related phenotypes have been added to the KORA research portfolio within the frame of the Research Consortium KORA-Age. Moreover, the institute makes use of the birth cohorts GINI and LISA. It plays a leading role in the planning and setting up of the German National Cohort and builds the NAKO biorepository.