Assistant Professor


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Robert Wahl PhotoPublic Health Focus/Interests:

Dr. Robert “Bob” Wahl is an environmental epidemiologist with research interests focusing on asthma surveillance, air pollutants' effects on asthma and adverse birth outcomes, and the health effects of climate change. He is currently co-PI on a federal Housing and Urban Development grant looking at the use of portable air filtration devices to reduce exposure to lead dust in contaminated indoor homes.   

Dr. Wahl comes to MSU with over two decades of experience at the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) where he served as an environmental epidemiologist and managed the Chronic Disease Epidemiology and Surveillance and Program Evaluation Sections. Dr. Wahl collaborated on MDHHS’ home-based environmental intervention and education program for families of children with asthma, and he served on its Advisory Board. As a researcher within MDHHS, he has extensive experience in grant authoring and management, serving as the PI on four cooperative agreements funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and one funded by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).  

He teaches in the MPH program where he introduces students to real-world connections between research and policy implications. Courses taught include Introduction to Public Health, Environmental Factors of Health, and the Public Health Integrative Learning Experience. He is currently teaching Epidemiology and Public Health and Study Design and Research Methods for Public Health Practice. 



Master of Science, Environmental Health, 1999
Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO

Doctor of Veterinary Medicine, 1991
Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO

Master of Science, Veterinary Science, 1988
Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO


Public Health Courses Taught:

PH 101: Introduction to Public Health
PH 803: Epidemiology for Public Health
PH 806: Environmental Factors of Health
PH 816: Human Risk Assessment and Risk Management in Public Health
PH 880: Study Design and Research Methods for Public Health Practice
PH 893: Public Health Integrative Learning Experience


Professional Experience/Expertise:

Effects of air pollutant exposures on health

Asthma and air pollution

Chronic disease epidemiology in public health 


Professional Activities or Current Research:

Chronic disease epidemiology

In-home case management of asthma

Addressing chronic disease co-morbidities


Recent Publications, Presentations:

Largo TW, Borgialli M, Wisinski CL, Wahl RL, Priem WF. 2011.  Healthy Homes University: a home-based environmental intervention and education program for families with pediatric asthma in Michigan. Public Health Rep. May-Jun;126 Suppl 1:14-26.

Li S, Batterman S, Wasilevich E, Wahl R, Wirth J, Su FC, Mukherjee B. 2011. Association of daily asthma emergency department visits and hospital admissions with ambient air pollutants among the pediatric Medicaid population in Detroit: Time-series and time-stratified case-crossover analyses with threshold effects. Environ Res. Nov;111(8):1137-47. Epub 2011 Jul 20.

Le HQ, Batterman SA, Wirth JJ, Wahl RL, Hoggatt KJ, Sadeghnejad A, Hultin ML, Depa M. 2012. Air Pollutant Exposure and Preterm and Term Small-for-Gestational-Age Births in Detroit, Michigan: Long-term Trends and Associations. Environment International, Feb 6 [Epub ahead of print].

Li S, Batterman S, Wasilevich E, Elasaad H, Wahl RL, Mukherjee B. 2011. Asthma exacerbation and proximity of residence to major roads: a population-based matched case-control study among the pediatric Medicaid population in Detroit, Michigan. Environmental Health, 10:34 (23 April).


Professional Website URL:



Selected Media Coverage:

MSU MPH Faculty Voice: Air Pollution’s Impact on the Health of Michiganders