Wednesday, October 28, 2020

NIEHS Superfund Research Program (SRP)’s “Progress in Research” webinar series.

The NIEHS Superfund Research Program (SRP)’s “Progress in Research” webinar series featuring the Superfund Research Center grants awarded in 2020. SRP Center grants support problem-based, solution-oriented research teams integrating projects in biomedical sciences, environmental science & engineering, data management, community engagement, research translation, and graduate training. This series highlights the research underway in these Centers, providing an overview of the complex issues each Center addresses as well as highlights of each of the projects and cores. The webinars are free and open to the public.
Registration is open for all remaining sessions (dates/times here, full descriptions are at the end of this email):
October 28, 1 – 3 PM EDT
Session II - Legacy and Emerging Contaminants (PAHs, PCBs, PFAS)
Featuring U Kentucky, Oregon State U, and Baylor College of Medicine
Session II Registration
November 9, 2 – 3:30 PM EST
Session III – Vulnerable Populations
Featuring Northeastern U and U Alabama - Birmingham
Session III Registration
November 19, 2 – 4 PM EST
Session IV – Emerging Exposures
Featuring North Carolina State U, U Iowa, and Louisiana State U
Session IV Registration
Archives will be available a few days after the webinar on the respective registration pages (our October 21 webinar on Metals will be posted soon). We encourage you to invite your colleagues, and we hope you can make it!
Kind regards,
Heather Henry
NIEHS Superfund Research Program
Phone: 984-287-3268
Mobile: 919-609-6061
It is EPA's policy to make reasonable accommodation to persons with disabilities wishing to participate in the agency's programs and activities, pursuant to the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, 29 U.S.C. 791. Any request for accommodation should be made to Jean Balent at or 703-603-9924.
Full Descriptions:
October 28, 1 – 3 PM EDT, Session II - Legacy and Emerging Contaminants (PAHs, PCBs, PFAS), Session II Registration
  • The University of Kentucky SRP Center, "Nutrition and Superfund Chemical Toxicity," explores human health challenges arising from exposure to halogenated organic substances such as polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), trichloroethylene, tetrachloroethene, and per- and polyfluoralkyl substances (PFAS). They conduct research on lifestyle changes such as nutrition and exercise and the relationship with pollutant exposure and disease risk. Center scientists also study remediation systems and engineering solutions for toxicant removal. The goal is to develop prevention strategies for diseases associated with chlorinated organic contaminants through a combination of enhanced remediation and healthy lifestyle components.
  • The Oregon State University SRP Center, "PAHs: New Technologies and Emerging Health Risks," investigates polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAHs) mixtures before and after remediation. Center scientists work to track PAH movement through the environment, measure PAH exposure in individuals located near contaminated sites, predict the products of PAH transformation during remediation, determine the toxicity of complex PAH mixtures, and link PAH exposure to health outcomes.
  • The Baylor College of Medicine SRP Center, "PAHs: Ultrasensitive Detection, Early-Life Exposures - Clinical Outcomes (Preterm Births, Chronic Lung Disease, and Neurocognitive Deficits), Prevention and Remediation," works in Harris County, Texas to explore maternal exposure to PAHs and the increased risk of preterm birth. They are investigating the molecular mechanisms behind the increased preterm birth risk after maternal exposure to PAH mixtures. Center scientists are also working to develop methods for detecting PAH-based compounds in air, water, and soil, remediation technologies to treat contaminated sediment, and strategies to prevent and reduce the health burden associated with PAH exposure.
November 9, 2 – 3:30 PM EST, Session III – Vulnerable Populations, Session III Registration
  • The Northeastern University SRP Center, "Puerto Rico Testsite for Exploring Contamination Threats (PROTECT)," conducts research on pregnant mothers in Puerto Rico and the relationship between contaminant exposures in drinking water, socioeconomic factors, and adverse pregnancy outcomes. They study a variety of toxicants such as chlorinated volatile organic compounds, phthalates, metals, pesticides, and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons and the mechanisms by which these chemicals can contribute to adverse pregnancy outcomes. Center scientists also investigate how extreme weather events can exacerbate exposures and work to develop methods to reduce exposure risk.
  • The University of Alabama-Birmingham SRP Center, "Impact of Airborne Heavy Metals on Lung Disease and the Environment," studies airborne heavy metal pollution and its impact on respiratory health in the area surrounding the 35th Avenue Superfund site in downtown Birmingham. This community is predominantly African American and has higher levels of chronic lung diseases compared to neighboring control areas irrespective of smoking, socioeconomic status, or demographics. Center scientists are developing tools to measure toxicants in the field, studying the efficacy of materials for contaminant removal, and working to understand the connections between environmental degradation and lung health.
November 19, 2 – 4 PM EST, Session IV – Emerging Exposures, Session IV Registration
  • The North Carolina State University SRP Center, "Center for Environmental and Health Effects of PFAS," focuses on per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) which are ubiquitous in the environment and have been associated with health effects such as cancer and thyroid, liver, and immune system toxicity. Despite this, these compounds have not been well-studied. Center scientists are investigating human exposure levels to PFAS in impacted areas, PFAS toxicity and the underlying mechanisms behind reduced thyroid and immune function, the potential for PFAS bioaccumulation, and effective remediation approaches for PFAS contamination.
  • The University of Iowa SRP (ISRP) Center, "Airborne PCBs: Sources, Exposures, Toxicities, Remediation," explores polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and the health impacts stemming from inhalation of these toxic chemicals. Center scientists focus on neurodevelopmental and metabolic effects, particularly in adolescents, and the relationship to novel PCB exposure pathways in buildings such as schools. They aim to identify the mechanisms behind PCB interference with lipid metabolism, define the specific environments that contribute to inhalation exposure and its importance compared to dietary exposure, and develop cost-effective strategies to remove or reduce emissions.
  • The Louisiana State University SRP Center, "Environmentally Persistent Free Radicals (EPFRs)," studies an emerging class of contaminants which are produced during thermal treatment of hazardous wastes and have been shown to induce cardiac and pulmonary dysfunction in exposed populations. They are investigating mechanisms of EPFR-induced health impacts, determining how EPFRs form, stabilize, and decay, and demonstrating a link between EPFR exposure and poor respiratory health in children. The research goal is to understand how to attenuate EPFR formation, facilitate EPFR decay, and limit exposure to EPFRs.

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