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Your Environment. Your Health.

2021 News

Superfund Research Program

Heather Stapleton, Ph.D.
Uncovering a Link Between Chemicals in Dust and Disease
December 17, 2021
Duke SRP Center Co-Director Heather Stapleton, Ph.D., described her research to understand the harmful chemical exposures that people may encounter in their homes and how they affect health.
SRP trainee handling alligators
Studying Alligators and Humans May Reveal How PFAS Harm the Immune System
November 22, 2021
Researchers at the NIEHS Superfund Research Program (SRP) Center at North Carolina State University (NCSU) are exploring connections between exposure to per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) and immune function in both animals and humans. They are gaining insight into how exposure to PFAS over decades may harm the immune system and the body’s ability to fight off infections, including COVID-19.
trainees clearing land with shovels on the farm
Community-Engaged Research Addresses Health Concerns on Tribal Lands
November 04, 2021
Approximately 500,000 Native Americans live within three miles of a Superfund site. The NIEHS Superfund Research Program (SRP) has long supported community-engaged research with Native American communities to identify strategies to reduce exposures and protect their health.
Map of NH and ME with dots indicating well water sampling sites
Dartmouth SRP Center Helps Young Citizen Scientists Continue Work
October 21, 2021
Researchers at the NIEHS Superfund Research Program (SRP)-funded Center at Dartmouth College and collaborators quickly identified challenges and realistic solutions for their citizen science project, All About Arsenic, during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Juan Parras
Organizing Community Voices to Achieve Environmental Equity, Justice, and Resilience
September 29, 2021
Juan Parras described his partnership with the SRP Centers at Texas A&M University and the Baylor College of Medicine through the Texas Environmental Justice Advocacy Services (t.e.j.a.s.).
two women toting a large bucket
Brown SRP Researchers and Community Come Together on Narragansett Tribal Lands
September 28, 2021
NIEHS-funded Brown University Superfund Research Program (SRP) Center researchers and Narragansett Tribal leaders, long-time partners in community activities, joined forces again. Through their collaboration, they are educating and empowering Tribal members to address their environmental health concerns in a way that connects cultural and scientific knowledge.
Screenshots of DEBRI data showing sample participant results screens
SRP Researchers Inform PFAS Guidance
September 02, 2021
Involving the community is valuable when adjusting clinical and public health guidance, especially as it relates to the health effects of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) and other chemicals of concern. NIEHS Superfund Research Program (SRP)-funded researchers were part of an ad-hoc committee that met six times between February and August to hear the experiences of communities across the country affected by exposure to PFAS and use that information to help shape new recommendations.
thirteen researchers posing for a photograph in front of a farmers market with trees in the background
SRP Trainee Event Highlights New Approaches to Engage with Communities
August 19, 2021
NIEHS Superfund Research Program (SRP) trainees from institutions across the Southeastern U.S. gathered virtually for a two-day event, Aug. 2 and 4, to discuss best practices for partnering with communities vulnerable to environmental exposures. The event was organized by the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (UNC), North Carolina State University, Duke University, University of Kentucky (UK), University of Louisville, and University of Alabama at Birmingham SRP centers.
One individual in a red jacket sitting in boat looking over the edge of the boat into a tube, three individuals in waders standing around the boat in a lake surrounded by trees
UW SRP Researchers Work with Agency Partners to Communicate Risk
August 05, 2021
Researchers from the NIEHS-funded University of Washington (UW) Superfund Research Program (SRP) Center found new evidence that environmental contamination from a former smelter in Ruston, Washington may pose a threat to human health in surrounding areas. Before publishing the results, the team reached out to coordinate risk communication strategies with agency partners and share the findings with potentially affected communities.
Brown SRP trainees, researchers, and community members take safety precautions during community volunteer days.
Trainees Get Creative During the Pandemic
July 21, 2021
When in-person events, classes, and research activities were put on hold due to the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), NIEHS Superfund Research Program (SRP)-funded trainees got creative and identified unique opportunities to pursue safely during the pandemic. With support from their mentors, SRP trainees gained experience across multiple scientific fields, conducted research in a collaborative environment, and engaged with diverse stakeholders and community members.
Four squares that read - 1) number of studies: 40; 2) number of specimens analyzed: 63,698; 3) number of subjects: 27,033; 4) Number of Chemicals Targeted: 139
HHEAR Grantee Meeting Highlights Resources for Researchers
July 16, 2021
NIEHS Superfund Research Program (SRP)-funded researchers from all over the country tuned in for the Human Health Exposure Analysis Resource (HHEAR) June 2021 Virtual Grantee Meeting. The event was hosted by the HHEAR Coordinating Center and the NIEHS Exposure Science and the Exposome Webinar Series.
Diana Rohlman, Ph.D
Innovating Environmental Health Communication
June 22, 2021
Former Oregon State University (OSU) SRP Center trainee Diana Rohlman, Ph.D., discussed creative approaches for culturally sensitive community engagement and research translation.
Multiracial group of people standing in clean environment
Advancing Environmental Justice
June 09, 2021
Researchers funded by the NIEHS Superfund Research Program (SRP) have been in the spotlight recently for their work on environmental justice (EJ). From being selected for prestigious committees to supporting webinar series, SRP grantees and their partners are addressing the challenges and complexities of EJ.
illustration of a dna strand on a black background
Linking a DNA Repair Enzyme to Cancer Susceptibility
May 10, 2021
Researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) NIEHS Superfund Research Program (SRP) Center uncovered a mechanism that may explain how N-Nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA) can lead to DNA damage and cancer in mice.
Photograph of a plant seedling growing out of a pile of dirt on the ground
SRP Welcomes New Individual Research Grants
April 27, 2021
The NIEHS Superfund Research Program (SRP) welcomes 10 newly funded individual research projects. They are incorporating new advances in materials science to optimize bioremediation of contaminants in soil, sediment, or water. Bioremediation is a cost-effective, energy efficient approach involving bacteria, fungi, and plants to break down and remove hazardous substances from the environment. These projects may offer new breakthroughs to advance sustainable solutions for hazardous substances in the environment.
SOT Virtual Meeting poster
SRP Impresses at Virtual SOT
April 19, 2021
NIEHS Superfund Research Program (SRP)-funded researchers from all over the country tuned in for the virtual 2021 Society of Toxicology (SOT) Annual Meeting and ToxExpo on March 16-26. More than 60 SRP project leaders and trainees from more than 13 SRP Centers gave oral and poster presentations.
drawing of a human figure in silhouette inside a circle with images of the enviromnent and scientific illustrations filling sections of the circle
SRP Grantees Share Innovative Science at Microbiome Conference
April 08, 2021
In an NIEHS virtual symposium, held February 23-24, NIEHS Superfund Research Program (SRP) grantees were well represented within the broader NIEHS community, sharing their efforts to understand the relationship between environmental exposures, the microbiome, and human health.
Angela Gutierrez, Ph.D.
Developing Innovative, Sustainable Technologies to Clean-up Water
April 07, 2021
Angela Gutierrez, Ph.D., of the University of Kentucky SRP Center  shared her journey from SRP trainee to NIEHS small business innovative research grant to develop new strategies to remove contaminants from water.
Morello-Frosch is a professor in the School of Public Health and the Department of Environmental Science, Policy and Management at the University of California (UC), Berkeley. She leads the Community Engagement Core at the UC Berkeley SRP Center. (Photo courtesy of the UC Berkeley SRP Center)
Linking Chemical and Nonchemical Mixtures to Health Disparities
February 22, 2021
Rachel Morello-Frosh, Ph.D., conducts research to understand how social factors, such as inequality and psychological stress, interact with environmental chemical exposures to influence disparities in the health status of different groups.
FAIR principles
Annual Meeting Satellite Workshops Boost Collaboration
February 01, 2021
Two workshops, held December 16 as part of the first NIEHS Superfund Research Program (SRP) virtual annual meeting, provided forums to delve into data science issues and showcase innovative remediation and detection technologies.
New Approach to Remove Chemicals from Animal Derived Foods
January 25, 2021
In a new study, funded in part by the NIEHS Superfund Research Program (SRP), researchers improved an approach to remove persistent organic pollutants (POPs) from foods of animal origin. Michael Denison, Ph.D., from the University of California, Davis SRP Center collaborated with a team of researchers from the European Union Reference Laboratory to test several laboratory methods and develop an improved method for the extraction of lipids and associated POPs bound to animal tissue.
OndaVia trained a team of experts to run its water analysis system at the NIH campus. (Photo courtesy of Mark Peterman)
SRP Small Business Successfully Deploys Water Testing Technology at the NIH Campus
January 06, 2021
NIEHS Superfund Research Program (SRP) small business grantee OndaVia, Inc. successfully implemented their water analysis system at the NIH campus in Bethesda, Maryland. The system uses spectroscopy and nanotechnology to provide instrumentation for rapid, on-site, easy to use, and inexpensive laboratory-grade testing of chemicals in water.
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