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Environmental Factor, August 2013

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This month in EHP

Cover of August 2013 Environmental Health Perspectives (EHP)

This month, Environmental Health Perspectives (EHP) (http://ehp.niehs.nih.gov/) highlights efforts to reduce pollution caused by artisanal brick kilns, and implications of a Supreme Court ruling for genetic research.

Modernizing Artisanal Brick Kilns to Curb Environmental Health Impacts

Most of the millions of bricks made each year in developing countries are fired in highly polluting artisanal kilns. Since brick production keeps pace with population growth, its environmental health impacts are likely growing throughout the developing world. A number of small-scale and multinational development groups, coordinated by the World Bank, the United Nations, and other organizations, are now turning their attention to modernization efforts in this important, but poorly characterized, industrial sector.

Our Shared Code: The Myriad Decision and the Future of Genetic Research

In its June 2013 decision in Association for Molecular Pathologists, et al. v. Myriad Genetics, Inc., et al., the U.S. Supreme Court ended the decades-old practice of granting patents on isolated DNA, although cDNA, synthesized in the laboratory, is still eligible for patent. The decision has been widely lauded as a victory for patients, scientists, and clinicians, but the patent eligibility of cDNA and Myriad’s sequestration of its data in a proprietary database have unclear implications for genomic studies.

Featured research and related news articles this month include:

  • Fetal Exposure of Rhesus Macaques to Bisphenol A Alters Conducting Airway Cellular Development by Changing Epithelial Secretory Product Expression — BPA and Altered Airway Cells: Association Seen in Rhesus Macaques after Third-Trimester Exposure
  • Management Options for Reducing the Release of Antibiotics and Antibiotic Resistance Genes to the Environment — Germ Warfare? Strategies for Reducing the Spread of Antibiotic Resistance
  • Understanding and Managing Zoonotic Risk in the New Livestock Industries — Infectious Diseases Associated with Livestock Production: Mitigating Future Risks
  • High Bioavailability of Bisphenol A from Sublingual Exposure — Oral Argument: Sublingual Findings Challenge Key Assumptions about BPA Exposure



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