OUR STUDIES

Lab Experiment

THE MISSING LINK: HOW INFLAMMATION MEDIATES THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN EXPECTATION, INFECTION AND DIVERSITY IN THE PREMENSTRUAL EXPERIENCE

A study led by Gabriella Kountourides and Dr Alvergne, funded by the ESRC and British Academy

Is premenstrual syndrome (PMS) the manifestation of environmentally induced inflammation? The experience of PMS varies between individuals and across populations, but we don’t fully understand why. While PMS has recently been described as an inflammatory disease, there’s little actual data on why levels of inflammation vary between people.

Ramping up the research

This Menstrual Messages website is part of our research. We’ll be the first to test the hypothesis that variation in inflammatory markers during the premenstrual experience is partially explained by environmental factors. These are both internal (infection) and external (social expectation of the premenstrual experience).

Using technology and live data

Our research is being carried out in partnership with departments within the medical sciences division at the University of Oxford, and the digital period tracker app, Clue. The findings will have implications for rethinking the discussions around PMS and pave the way for new therapeutic perspectives.