Superfund Research Program
Project Leader: Bruce A. Stanton
Grant Number: P42ES007373
Funding Period: 2000-2020
Aims: The goals of the Training Core (TC) are to support interdisciplinary training activities in environmental health sciences for graduate students and postdoctoral fellows and to direct their progression to independence. The activities organized by the TC are designed to provide unique interdisciplinary training and research experiences, and to develop leaders in the field of environmental health.
Results: In 2013 all graduate students and postdoctoral fellows participated in Core-sponsored activities including: weekly SRP seminars, annual presentation of their research, participation in theTraining Core's annual trainee program retreat and presentations at scientific meetings (including the SOT and the Annual SRP Meeting). In the last funding period SRP faculty offered the following unique / interdisciplinary courses for TC's trainees: (1) Synchrotron X-ray Microprobe Analysis in Environmental and Life Sciences, one of the first of its kind, which utilized the NSLS hard x-ray microprobe beamline X26A to conduct x-ray fluorescence imaging (Amanda Socha, Maria Hindt, Alicia Sivitz and Suna Kim attended), (2) Bioinformatics Course for Environmental Scientists, another first of its kind, intensive, one-week course (50 contact hours) for trainees in the national SRP, (3) Advanced Bioinformatics, (4) Pharmacology & Toxicology, (5) Environmental and Occupational Health: Challenges, Controversies, and Critical Analysis, (6) Analytical Chemistry and Instrumental Analysis, and (7) Proposal Development and Grant Writing. All students in the Training Core's program are required to take a set of interdisciplinary core courses during their training, as described in the Core's renewal application. A brief overview of the research and major accomplishments of the Training Core's trainees in 2013 is presented below.
The Training Core/SRP projects provided direct financial support to three graduate students (GS) and four postdoctoral fellows (PD) this year
- Samuel Beal: 5th (final) year GS, Earth Sciences. Project: Atmospheric and climatic controls on atmospheric metal deposition to southern Peru and Yukon Territory. Published: Beal, S.A., Jackson, B.P., Kelly, M.A., Stroup, J.S., and J.D. Landis (2013) Effects of historical and modern mining on mercury deposition in southeastern Peru. Environmental Science and Technology. 47, 12715-12720. PMID:24124645. Submitted: Beal, S.A., Kelly, M.A., Stroup, J.S., Jackson, B.P., and T.V. Lowell (under review) Natural and anthropogenic variations in atmospheric mercury deposition during the Holocene near Quelccaya Ice Cap, Peru. Global Biogeochemical Cycles. Presentations: Oral 2013 International Conference on Mercury as a Global Pollutant, Edinburgh, UK. Title: "An ice core record of atmospheric mercury deposition over the Holocene from Mount Logan" 2013 Northeastern Meeting of the Geological Society of America, Bretton Woods, NH. Title: "Spatial and temporal trends in atmospheric mercury deposition to southern Peru" Poster 2013 International Conference on Mercury as a Global Pollutant, Edinburgh, UK .Title: "Spatial and temporal trends in atmospheric mercury deposition to southern Peru".
- Vivien Taylor: PD, Trace Element Analysis Core. Projects: (1) Developing novel techniques for determining low-level Hg and As species. Paper submitted (under revision), "Pathways of CH3Hg and Hg ingestion in benthic organisms: an enriched isotope approach". Taylor, Vivien; Bugge, Deenie; Jackson, Brian; Chen, Celia. Environmental Science and Technology.
- Jie Yang: 3rd Yr GS, Earth Sciences. Graduated with M.S., August 2013. Thesis entitled "Physical and Photochemical Controls on Hg Partitioning".
- Emily Notch: PD, Microbiology & Immunology. Project: Effect of arsenic species on the immune response to P. aeruginosa. Attended the 2013 SRP annual meeting and presented two posters: "Arsenic species differentially alter Pseudomonas induced immune response in bronchial epithelial cells" and "Arsenic species differentially impact Pseudomonas induced cytokine release in human macrophages.
- Dawoon Jung: PD, Microbiology & Immunology. Project: The role of aquaglyceroporins in the arsenic uptake pathway in Atlantic killifish (Fundulus heteroclitus). Project: Monitoring stress response in killifish inhabiting the Callahan Mine Superfund Site. Presented a poster at the 2013 SRP annual meeting. Presented a poster at the 2013 Society of Toxicology annual meeting. Presented an oral presentation at the 2013 International Congress in Toxicology Conference. Presented an oral presentation at the 2013 Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry annual meeting.
- Amanda Socha: 4th yr GS, Biological Sciences. Project: Synchrotron imaging of germinating seedlings to examine metal mobilization. Presented a poster at the 2013 Plant Biology meeting in Providence, RI.
- Kate Buckman: Ph.D., Biological Sciences. Project: Bioaccumulation and trophic transfer of methylmercury. Presented: an invited talk at the North Atlantic Chapter of the Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry, Fairlee VT; several posters at the International Conference on Mercury as a Global Pollutant, Edinburgh Scotland; a poster at the Northeast SRP Training and Outreach Event.
In 2013 the Training Core's faculty participated in several recruitment activities including several visits to college campuses, interviewing trainees at the SOT and the SRP annual meetings, as well as interviewing and hosting students who applied to the following Dartmouth graduate programs: Program in Experimental and Molecular Medicine (PEMM), Ecology and Evolutionary Biology (EEB), Molecular and Cell Biology (MCB) and the Thayer School of Engineering. Several applicants to the Training Core's program in 2013 became aware of Dartmouth and their trainee program as undergraduates who participated in TC's NIEHS Short Term Educational Experiences for Research (STEER) for high school students, the Dartmouth Women In Science Program (WISP), the Dartmouth Academic Summer Undergraduate Research Experience (ASURE), and the Mount Desert Island Biological Laboratory (MDIBL) Center for Environmental Research, all of which provide unique, hands-on research experiences for individuals in groups that are under-represented in the sciences.
Significance: Training the next generation of environmental scientists is a priority of the national SRP and a priority of the Dartmouth SRP faculty. By providing interdisciplinary training activities in environmental health sciences for both graduate students and postdoctoral fellows the Training Core's goal is to develop leaders in the field of environmental health sciences who will continue the legacy of the SRP, and produce new information that will enhance the efforts of their stakeholders, provide important information for their communities, and thereby enhance public health in the US.
Plans: In 2014 the Training Core will continue to emphasize the education and recruitment of graduate students in the environmental health science with an emphasis on providing interdisciplinary training.