Adverse Reactions

Estradiol Complicates Everything: Toxicology across the Gender Spectrum

June 29, 2023 Troy Roepke, PhD, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey Season 3 Episode 2
Adverse Reactions
Estradiol Complicates Everything: Toxicology across the Gender Spectrum
Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

When it comes to hormones, everyone has them all, but their levels are where things get interesting. How chemicals affect estrogen signaling in the brain is the research focus of Troy Roepke, Rutgers, who talks to co-hosts Anne Chappelle and David Faulkner about how gender is not easily defined biologically, what it is like to be a “fabulously queer” professor, and how science can better serve the LGBTQ+ and other marginalized communities.

About the Guest
Troy Roepke, PhD, is an Associate Professor in the Rutgers School of Environmental and Biological Sciences Department of Animal Sciences, where their research goal is for a greater understanding of the interaction between novel steroid (estrogen) signaling pathways, neuroendocrine functions, maternal and adult diets, and endocrine-disrupting chemicals on homeostatic functions controlled by the hypothalamus, as well as the long-term consequences of maternal exposures to low doses of endocrine-disrupting chemicals in model species and how these maternal exposures may affect normal adult offspring physiological functions.

In addition to their teaching and lab duties, Dr. Roepke serves as Associate Dean of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion for the Rutgers School of Environmental and Biological Sciences. Dr. Roepke believes one of the most important aspects of being an openly queer professor is to create a lab environment that is supportive of all historically excluded students and trainees, especially LGBTQ+ students. They believe that great science happens when one creates a supportive, diverse, and inclusive environment that prioritizes teamwork, positivity, and respect wherein each team member feels welcomed and encouraged to bring their true authentic selves to the lab.

Dr. Roepke received a doctorate in physiology with a designated emphasis in reproductive biology from the University of California Davis in 2005. Their postdoctoral training was at Oregon Health & Science University, studying the neuroendocrinology of estrogens from 2005 to 2011 where they were the recipient of a K99/R00 Pathways to Independence Award from the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases to study how endocrine disruptors influence metabolism. 

[00:00:00] Adverse Reactions “Decompose” Theme Music

[00:00:05] David Faulkner: Hello, and welcome to Adverse Reactions

[00:00:08] Anne Chappelle: This season, our theme is intersections, where we see toxicology intersect with another science.

[00:00:15] David Faulkner: Well, a lot of other sciences. 

No person is an island, and no discipline has all the answers. But when scientific fields collide, some really interesting things happen. I’m David Faulkner,

[00:00:27] Anne Chappelle: and I’m Anne Chapelle. 

[00:00:28] David Faulkner: Welcome to Adverse Reactions Season 3: Intersections. 

[00:00:32] Adverse Reactions “Decompose” Theme Music

[00:00:39] Thanks for joining us, and welcome to today’s episode, “Estradiol Complicates Everything: Toxicology across the Gender Spectrum.”

[00:00:47] Troy Roepke: It’s important to study both sexes, but it’s really important about how you interpret that information and how you categorize what are you calling a male mouse? Is it just a mouse with the testes? Then, that’s what you need to say. You know, we studied males and females. Females, we defined as animals that had an ovary. You need to be clear of that.

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[00:01:12] Anne Chappelle: Welcome to Adverse Reactions, Troy Roepke. I’m really excited to have you on our show today.

[00:01:18] Troy Roepke: Thank you. I’m excited to be here. 

[00:01:19] Anne Chappelle: My first question is: can you tell me about where you’re working now and what kind of research are you doing? 

[00:01:26] Troy Roepke: I’m an Associate Professor in the Department of Animal Sciences in the School of Environmental and Biological Sciences at Rutgers University in New Jersey. I focus my work on two areas. One is estrogen signaling and how estrogen signals in the brain primarily to control neurons that then control physiology, control behavior, etc. 

Then, I also look at chemicals, endocrine-disrupting chemicals, that can interact with the same receptors and how those exposures influence the same processes. So, currently, I’m focusing now on organo-phosphate flame retardants as my toxicant of choice. And we’ve shown over the past couple years the influence of maternal exposures on energy balance and behavior, as well as adult exposures on energy balance, and behavior, like gene expression and some hormone expression, etc. That’s where my main tox experience is right now.

[00:02:25] David Faulkner: So, estrogen is usually thought of as the female hormone, but it does a lot more than that. Could you expand on the sort of things that estrogen does in the brain and what you’re doing in your research?

[00:02:36] Troy Roepke: So, estrogen is not the female hormone. Everybody that has gonads produces estradiol. The testes produce estradiol. Fat produces estradiol. The brain produces its own estrogen. So, even in a person with testes producing androgens, androgens will get into the brain, and it’ll be converted into estradiol, and so some of the actions that are associated with androgens are actually estrogen acting on estrogen receptors in the brain after androgens have been converted. 

So, I teach animal reproduction and one of the first things I say when I start talking about reproductive hormones is there’s no such thing as a male hormone or female hormone in the context of steroids. All our bodies produce them. So, even in a body that has ovaries, the adrenals produce androgens. It’s a large number of significant concentrations of androgens. There’s no either/or here. What is different, of course, is the concentration, and the cycles of expression can be different. 

So, what I’ve focused on in terms of estrogen in the brain, my work has primarily been in the hypothalamus and looking at neurons that control reproduction, energy balance, thermal regulation, stress. I’ve more recently got into another region of the brain that is more involved with mood, and so, we’re looking at how estrogen interacts with these neurons in another region of the brain called the bed nucleus of the stria terminalis, or the BNST. It’s often called the extended amygdala. I look at these regions and then how estrogen either acts on neurons at the membrane, membrane signaling that alters neurophysiology, or I look at how it controls gene expression through the classical estrogen signaling of the estrogen response element.

Typically, I’m trying to figure out ways that estrogen signals in the brain that we could develop selective targets that would be good for hormone therapy, whether that’s for a cisgender woman who’s going through menopause or for a trans woman who wants to take estrogen but not have the potential cancer-causing effects of estrogen or progesterone in any sort of hormone therapies. That’s of course a big concern, but if we can decipher how the estrogen signals and then target a certain type of signal that still gives some benefit without causing cancer, that would be the ideal, right?

[00:04:55] David Faulkner: Yeah, absolutely. And thank you for dispelling that myth of there being male or female hormones. I often get very frustrated with people who say, “Well, it’s just biology. There’s the man, and there’s the woman.” And I’m thinking, like, “Clearly, you don’t know much about biology at all because there’s a lot more complexity to it than that.” And actually, I was wondering, as long as we’re dispelling myths, maybe you could talk a little bit about the biphasic distribution of these sorts of things.

[00:05:22] Troy Roepke: Are you talking about like sex itself? Like, how we define sex? 

[00:05:25] David Faulkner: The way that biological sexes is defined and discussed. Cuz there’s what people who study this as biologists know, and then, there’s people who do not and how they tend to think of these things. 

[00:05:38] Anne Chappelle: And this is one of the things that you were part of and I saw that you have the paper from June of 2022 that was published in the American General of Physiology, where you talk about challenges and inclusive practices for LGBTQIA2S+ scientists. Just reading through some of the definitions that are there was pretty nice, actually, to see it all explained because that’s not something I think that people always think about when they’re thinking about their cohorts for their whatever they’ve got—or even, I’ve got an animal study, and I’m gonna have male rats, and I’m gonna have female rats. I’d like to get to this whole idea you’ve been proposing or promoting the understanding of how do we address this community within our animal studies, within our cohorts. So that’s a really big topic, so I intend to be here for several hours with you.

[00:06:39] Troy Roepke: It is a complex question. It’s important to study both sexes, but it’s really important about how you interpret that information and how you categorize what are you calling a male mouse? Is it just a mouse with the testes? Then, that’s what you need to say. You know, we studied males and females. Females, we defined as animals that had an ovary. You need to be clear of that. So, what if you do a gonadectomy and you say we’re studying male mice, but then, you remove the testes? So then, why are you calling that a male mouse now? So, it’s really about just being clear on your language with the animal model and then being very careful on how you interpret your data when you’re trying to apply it to human populations. 

And so, there’s lot of, for lack of a better word, cis-heteronormativity, right? Where everything is assumed that everybody’s a straight dude and a straight woman, and now, they’re all cisgendered and so there’s no complication whatsoever. And that’s the problem because then that leaves out the community that we’re talking about. For my work, since I do study estrogen, I’m primarily interested in the experience of women—cis women, trans women, anybody who’s taking estrogen. And that’s how I pitch it is, I’m interested in helping all this group, all these people. 

[00:07:52] David Faulkner: That’s actually a good lead in to: what is your superhero origin story? What led you to this position where you have a platform and you have this lab and you can ask these questions and talk about these things and people will listen?

[00:08:05] Troy Roepke: My scientific superhero story is very twisty.

[00:08:09] David Faulkner: They always are.

[00:08:11] Troy Roepke: Yeah. Probably more so than most people’s because I was actually a marine biologist until 2005. I have three degrees in marine biology. My PhD was studying echinoderms. My master’s was studying hydrothermal vent animals. That’s where my focus was, although I was doing toxicology in marine biology. My PhD was looking at endocrine disruption and sea urchin development, but I switched fields because of, basically, institutionalized homophobia. 

In 2005, I couldn’t find a postdoc in my area of interest in a state that had any legal protections for same-sex couples. My husband and I, we didn’t wanna go somewhere where we were suddenly, “Now, you’re just two people living together.” That left out, at the time, most of the country. It was a couple months before my PhD was over, and I had nowhere to go. So, some colleague of my mentor suggested I do a biomedical cuz I was interested in estrogen signaling. So, he is, “Oh, do a biomedical postdoc and there’s this person up in Oregon who is one of the first people to show this sort of stuff in the brain—and he’s a great guy.” And I’m like, “Yeah, but he studies mice and rat brains. I don’t wanna do that cuz I’m a marine biologist.” But, you know, desperate times. I contacted him and said I wanna learn what you do and apply it to toxicology and apply it to marine animals … blah, blah, blah. And got in his lab, got on a training grant, and was very successful—got NIH fellowships, K99, R00, and then I had job interviews. It just happened and that this is the way it is. 

My first passion has always been marine biology. I was very happy with doing it, and I would’ve loved to have stayed, but the personal and the professional conflicted at that time. Fortunately, now, that’s not a concern, although it could be if the Supreme Court changes things, but back 17, 18 years ago, it was an issue.

[00:09:51] Anne Chappelle: Well, you know, New Jersey is known for the beauty of their beaches … 

[00:09:57] David Faulkner: True. 

[00:09:58] Anne Chappelle: … and the diverse life forms that you see in Margate versus Asbury Park. 

[00:10:05] Troy Roepke: Yeah, yeah.

[00:10:06] Anne Chappelle: So, I could see the draw.

[00:10:08] Troy Roepke: I would love to do some marine biology in the future, but in hindsight, while I’m not one to ever think about “Oh, it’s fate or destiny,” I was interested in estrogen signaling because of its effects in marine invertebrates, but because I made that switch into a field where I was looking at estrogen signaling in mammals and how it applies to human biology that now, I’m in this position where I can advocate for people in my community who need hormone therapy, gender-affirming hormone therapy, and I have that expertise. And I’m also in this position now where I’m senior, quote-unquote, enough that I can mentor trans and non-binary grad students and postdocs, not necessarily in lab either. Just people in the field who are also trying to do the same work. And now, I can be that person who’s there to support them and push for their success. And so, in some ways, I feel like this is interesting way this worked out that I had to make this choice, and now, at least, I’m doing something that’s gonna benefit my community. That makes me feel better about the choice that I had to make. 

[00:11:12] Anne Chappelle: Even if you’re not directly mentoring someone, the fact that you are out and screaming from the rooftops about this, that also makes you somebody that they want to be like. We’ve heard it many times about, “I wanna see somebody like me in a field I wanna do.” I have a child, a non-binary child, so seeing that portrayed in TV and on film and in the nightly news with it not being about your gender or your sex. About being how good you are at what you do. 

[00:11:50] Troy Roepke: One of the reasons why I wanted to have a faculty job at a undergraduate institution, not at a medical school, is because I wanted to be the fabulously queer Professor on campus that I never had. I went to, over the years, four or five different universities and never met an out, queer Professor until I got to my postdoc, and I was in my 30s. I wanna be that, and I’m pretty open on my campus. Everybody knows, and visually, too, you can tell I’m very flamboyant in how I dress, and I wear body glitter and paint my nails and I wear pink. I wanted to be that person I never had because I felt like it’s very important. 

Now, fortunately, I know I’ve made positive impact because I’ve had students email me out of the blue years later or find me on social media and be like, “Oh, Dr. Roepke, it was so great. I never had a class with you, but it was so great to see you on campus because I knew that there was a queer scientist on campus, and there is a space for people like me.” How do you not like that? So, being that example is very important to me locally as well as in my field. I’ve been in science for 30 years, and there certainly has been a growing level of acceptance. 

[00:12:55] David Faulkner: A few years ago. I got a chance to work on this project looking at screening for estrogen receptor agonists. And so, one of the things that was really fascinating about that was diving deep into this question of what does it mean to stimulate estrogen receptor? And then, looking at all these different other hormone receptors and how they interplay and just my mind breaking at the complexity of all these systems. But one of the things that I thought was really interesting was that it really seemed to be that the binding domains for a lot of these were shared among a variety of different hormones. That got me to thinking like, “Oh, this is just an unbelievably complicated system” and trying to say, “Oh, this is for boys, and this is for girls. That’s just insane because these are all just different tools with overlapping functions.”

[00:13:44] Troy Roepke: My lab’s motto is estradiol complicates everything. It’s a pointed joke because people don’t wanna study females cuz it’s too complicated. So, it’s my pushback at that idea that it’s complicated. It’s also a pushback of people who say it’s too complicated. I’m like, “Then, you’re lazy because it’s actually more interesting because it is complicated.” And it’s real world. Fifty percent of the population have high levels of estradiol for, like, most of their lives. We need to know this stuff. So, it shouldn’t be seen as too complicated. It should be seen as very, very important and something that should be intellectually stimulating. I want to understand all the complicated factors. 

I have a colleague, Jessica Tollkuhn, who recently published a Nature paper showing that in this BNST region of the brain, the differences in expression of genes are really hormone driven in males and females. Even though in males—and we’re talking about rodents here—in this region, there’s more estrogen receptor alpha in this region in males than there is in females and that the fluctuation is still under the control of estradiol, regardless of what the so-called sex is. So even at the molecular level on DNA, same things happen regardless of male or females. It’s just about the levels and the timing and what hormone is there. So, while there’s complexity, there is commonality between male and female brain. I think it’s important to study male and female brains, if you wanna categorize that, from an animal that you define as having an ovary or the testes. But there’s a lot of overlap. There’s rarely, unless you’re talking about reproduction itself, there’s rarely a neurological system where males are over here and females are way over here and there’s no overlap whatsoever.

I don’t know how many times I’ve gone to a meeting and people are like, “Oh look, there’s clear sex differences, and they’re showing individual data.” I’m like, “No, there’s not. Their averages are different, but the populations overlap.” So, there’s some animals that act just the same, regardless if they’re male or female, right? So, that’s more of like a population that’s overlapping on either end of the distribution curve. It’s hard for me to say that there’s a male brain and a female brain. There’s a brain that acts this way and a brain that acts this way, and they overlap on certain areas and they are different in certain areas. It’s more like a mosaic, or there are attributes, depending on what endpoint you’re looking at, that there are commonalities. 

A lot of the studies in humans, because it’s through functional MRI, they’re looking at connectivity or the size of things, but what they’re not measuring in humans is the mechanism. One of the things we do see often, at least in our rodent brains, is we see that while the endpoints of the same behavior happens, how it gets there is different because a different set of neurons are activated or they’re controlled slightly differently by this neurotransmitter because the receptors are downregulated more in the males than in the females. So, they’re subtle mechanisms that are different, but the end result still is the same. 

[00:16:38] David Faulkner: And you talked about overlap, too. This idea of a gradient of maybe this brain has more of this and this one has more of that, but there’s also this sliding scale, as well. I guess what’s curious to me is you can see this in the data, in the physiology, in the endocrinology. Maybe you have two peaks, but there’s a lot in the middle and on either end, as well. 

[00:17:02] Troy Roepke: That’s what most people see when they look at their data, when they look at more than just the average, when they’re looking at the distribution, they see overlap. I’m more interested in why are these animals responding in the same way if one’s called male, one’s called female. That to me is where the money is. Okay, great, they’re different in the average at the population level, but if it’s a pharmaceutical drug that we want to give to somebody for depression, and when you’re looking in the mice and there’s some sex differences in the response, but there’s overlap, so what does mean to a human? If there’s a population level, you’re gonna have a lot of people who are gonna act very similar, but if you’re designing the drug to work specifically in a woman versus a man, there’s some complexity there that people don’t actually talk about enough or actually acknowledge when they’re doing the work—that there could be overlap. 

There’s classic examples of drugs designed decades ago and primarily used men for their test subjects when they’re doing the human clinical trials, and now, there are cis women taking them; there’s some differences. And so, to me, it’s important to study both men and women when you’re doing the clinical trials but also realize that there’s gonna be people overlapping. And sometimes those people overlapping, maybe they are part of my community or maybe they’re not. Maybe some of the people in our community responds differently to pharmaceutical drugs or to antidepressants or stuff like that. It is known that queer people are much more at risk for depression and anxiety, but that’s often due to minority stress; the influences of a society that doesn’t want us here. And we’re not the only minority to experience minority stress and have higher risk for mental health conditions, but if you don’t include us in the study, you don’t know how things are gonna work. 

That’s the other part of the stuff that we’re talking about here is: how do we include the community in human studies and then how to interpret that work when you’re doing rodent studies or how to model that. That’s another key thing you can’t ask a mouse: what your gender identity is, or what your sexual orientation is, right? But you change their hormones or recapitulate what trans people experience and then see what happens in your rodent model, so these are the questions that people miss. They don’t often do that stuff. They assume that a good trans model using a rodent would be just to take out the ovaries and do the non-endogenous hormone, but that’s not how trans people take gender-affirming hormone therapy. They often keep their gonads and then take the hormone, so you’re not really getting at the right question. 

[00:19:23] Anne Chappelle: From a design, though, of studies, I was very interested in your point about is it a male rat? Is it a female rat if you’ve removed the gonads. And you’re in reproductive health, which is already something that isn’t as well studied as it should be. What do we need to be thinking about when we’re thinking about cohorts for study design that you would say could be low-hanging fruit? 

[00:19:48] Troy Roepke: I do gonadectomy in the animals and I do these hormone replacement studies because I’m specifically interested in the actions of the steroids themselves, right? Or when we do our tox work, when we do our exposures, we’re exposing dams or we’re exposing adults. We expose both males and females. We look at both male and female offspring. I think my point is this: we gotta be clear on what we are talking about as male and clear as what we call about female. And then, if you do something to them, like if you’re only saying, well an animal’s a male just cuz it has testes, then you remove the testes and if you are going to do a gonadectomy, how are you defining that? I’m not saying that I have the only idea of how to define it, but we just need to be clear about that because I think that leads to this idea that there are only behaviors or responses you’re only gonna see in males or females. 

One of you earlier said the phrase biological sex, which, in my world, that’s an anti-trans dog whistle because you really hardly ever saw biological sex until 30 years ago because most people who study reproduction know that sex is defined not just by whether or not you have a gonad or not—external/internal genitalia can change, chromosomes can be wildly different—cuz there are all these variations in the sex chromosome. So, it’s really more of a mosaic of attributes, from the chromosomal to the genetic, whether or not you have the SRY gene, to the internal/external genitalia, the hormones you produce. You know, when you see people who call themselves gender critical and they are very married to this idea that women have these attributes, I’m like, “So, what happens when a woman has a hysterectomy then? No longer a woman? Because she had a hysterectomy, she doesn’t have her uterus anymore; she doesn’t have her ovaries anymore.” And so, when you’re talking about it in terms of science, it’s really important when we are using our animal models to be very clear what we’re describing as male and female.

[00:21:42] David Faulkner: It’s all very interesting. I like the complexity. I think that’s part of why I am a scientist is because I get very excited about “Oh, there’s so much more here than I even realized.” Simple answers are boring.

I wanted to come back to this. Instead of pathologizing and saying, “Oh, we need to understand the etiology of what would lead to a person saying that they’re trans or gay or whatever,” instead saying, “What if we use that energy to try to think of how we can improve the lives of people like we would with literally anything else?” By pathologizing it in this way or looking for etiologies in this way, to me, that implies this is the only way that your life will be improved is if we can undo this or if we make you into something different, then, your life would be improved.

[00:22:29] Troy Roepke: Well, it’s coming from a point of view inherently that something went wrong. There’s a disruption to something in utero, and so now, your brain isn’t like everybody else’s and, therefore, it’s wrong.

One of my colleagues, Dr. Mae Guthman, when people bring up this idea, she always brings up left-handedness. A hundred years ago, left-handedness was considered evil, and people were forced to not be left-handed. And so, people didn’t identify as left-handed. But then, as there was gained acceptance, there are more people identifying as left-handed. Same thing is happening for trans people, for gay people; it’s safer, quote-unquote. There’s more of us identifying, and so now, people more identify because they feel they can do it safer. 

[00:23:05] Anne Chappelle: And on that scale for left-handedness, I’m left-handed. My husband’s left-handed, but I can’t do anything with my right hand. He, on the other hand, is quite functional with his: playing the guitar or catching and throwing and stuff. So that, just again, highlights the diversity there cuz it’s a spectrum. It isn’t just you are right-handed or left-handed. 

[00:23:26] Troy Roepke: Right. And the same thing for gender identity and sexual orientation.

[00:23:31] David Faulkner: There are plenty of examples in history of different communities have felt differently about sex and gender, and there’s a lot of art and there’s plenty of historical evidence that there’s been very different ideas about what is acceptable.

[00:23:45] Troy Roepke: And our concept of sex and gender is very Western European–centered. There are cultures all over the world historically and currently who have completely different ideas about sexuality and gender identity. That’s another sort of social thing that we have to be aware of—that our discussion here is still centered very much on the Western Eurocentric view of sex and gender. 

[00:24:06] Anne Chappelle: So, tell me a little bit about your lab. Do you have a bunch of graduate students, postdocs, undergrads? Where do your students go on to fulfill their job requirements? 

[00:24:19] Troy Roepke: I have had four PhD students and three master’s students graduate. I have had 60 undergrads cuz one of the reasons I wanted to be at an undergrad institute is cuz I have undergrads in the lab, and so my lab is known as the pink lab—I have pink walls. It’s known as a safe space for queer students, so a lot of my students are of the community or some other marginalized background because I’m very open about that. I’m currently also the Associate Dean of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion for my school, and so, it’s part of my day job to actually work on these issues outside my lab. My students tend to be very successful. All my PhDs have gone on to postdocs. Some of them are gone on to industries. Two of them are still in the postdoc stage, and my master’s students have all gone on to work at an industry. One student is my lab manager; he’s been with me since the beginning. So, they’ve been successful in what they want to do. 

[00:25:18] Anne Chappelle: So, at the end of our interviews, there’s some questions that we always ask our guests. So, what has been your biggest adverse reaction? 

[00:25:28] Troy Roepke: I think probably a adverse reaction is when people see me, they don’t think I can be a scientist. I literally have people think somebody who looks like me and acts like me can’t do what I do. I’ve gotten that a lot over the years because they’ve never seen anybody like me be a scientist. 

[00:25:46] David Faulkner: So, thinking about the work that you do and the advocacy work that you do, if there’s a call to action you could make to anyone listening—particularly allies or more specifically people who are not in the community—who just don’t really know or not sure how to help what they can do to be supportive. 

[00:26:04] Troy Roepke: As with anybody from a community that’s been marginalized, you want people who will believe you and support it. When I’ve had bad experiences, people are like, “Oh, I don’t believe that happened there. We’re so liberal here.” I’m like, “You’re telling me I’m lying to you?” I want allies to be like, “Yes, I understand what you experienced. It’s awful. What can I do to help?” That goes for black scientists, women in science. We just need to be believed and then using that to support what we are saying we need. Don’t think you know what we need. 

[00:26:34] David Faulkner: Thank you. That’s great. 

[00:26:36] Anne Chappelle: I think that’s all my questions. 

[00:26:38] David Faulkner: Yeah, no, I think so.

[00:26:41] Adverse Reactions “Decompose” Theme Music

[00:26:47] David Faulkner: On the next episode of Adverse Reactions, Julie Goodman’s “Bringing Cohorts in Cahoots with Lab Science.” 

[00:26:55] Julie Goodman: I think you’re really getting at hazard versus risk, right? And it’s not just old studies versus new. It’s exposures even in an occupational setting versus an environmental setting. You can have studies that clearly show that high exposures to some chemical cause cancer, and it’s not debatable; the evidence is there. But just because something in a really high exposure can cause cancer doesn’t mean it necessarily causes cancer at a low exposure. 

[00:27:19] Adverse Reactions “Decompose” Theme Music

[00:27:25] Anne Chappelle: Thank you all for joining us for this episode of Adverse Reactions presented by the Society of Toxicology. 

[00:27:31] David Faulkner: And thank you to Dave Leve at Ma3stro Studios, 

[00:27:34] Anne Chappelle: that’s Ma3stro with a three, not an E 

[00:27:37] David Faulkner: who created and produced all the music for Adverse Reactions, including the theme song, "Decompose." 

[00:27:44] Anne Chappelle: The viewpoints and information presented in Adverse Reactions represent those of the participating individuals. Although the Society of Toxicology holds the copyright to this production, it has, 

[00:27:55] David Faulkner: definitely,

[00:27:56] Anne Chappelle: not vetted or reviewed the information presented herein,

[00:28:00] David Faulkner: nor does presenting and distributing this podcast represent any proposal or endorsement of any position by the Society.

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[00:28:18] Anne Chappelle: I’m Anne Chappelle, 

[00:28:20] David Faulkner: and I’m David Faulkner. 

[00:28:21] Anne Chappelle: This podcast was approved by Anne’s mom.

[00:28:25] Adverse Reactions “Decompose” Theme Music

[00:28:31] End of Episode

Introduction to the Episode
How Endocrine-Disrupting Chemicals Affect Estrogen Signaling in the Brain
Let’s Talk about Sex (Gender) Misconceptions
Pivoting from Marine Biology to Toxicology
The Fabulously Queer Professor on Campus
Estradiol Complicates Everything
Overlap in the Data between Genders
The Need to Clearly Define Animal Models’ Biological Characteristics
The Danger of Etiology Regarding Sex and Gender
What Was a Significant Adverse Reaction in Your Life?
Episode Credits