Superfund Research Program
Biomarkers of Exposure to Hazardous Substances
Center Director: Bruce D. Hammock
Grant Number: P42ES004699
Funding Period: 1987-2023
News Items List
Paper of the Month: DNA-Based Sensor Rapidly Detects Pesticide Contamination
Environmental Factor - June 2023
Researchers at the University of California, Davis SRP Center developed a DNA-based sensor that can detect trace amounts of organophosphate pesticides in food products.
Extramural Paper of the Month: Link Between Placenta and Fetal Brain May Predict Neurodevelopment Disorders
SRP News Page - May 2022
An SRP-funded study in mice showed that prenatal exposure to polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) altered DNA methylation in both the placenta and fetal brain in a manner consistent with neurodevelopmental disorders. The research was conducted at the University of California, Davis SRP Center.
Better risk communication can reduce harmful exposures, experts say
Environmental Factor - July 2021
NIEHS grantees, partners, and colleagues came together to discuss how they have engaged with local groups and communicated potential health risks to reduce exposures and improve health. Hosted by the NIEHS Superfund Research Program (SRP) June 21-22, the online workshop drew more than 200 participants.
New marker of COVID-19 severity points to potential therapies
Paper of the Month - June 2021
Certain fatty acids in the blood of COVID-19 patients may predict the severity of adult respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) and offer a target for treatment, according to a new study from the University of California Davis SRP Center. ARDS involves a buildup of fluid in the lungs and is a leading cause of death in COVID-19 patients.
Data sharing key to environmental health research, experts say
Environmental Factor - June 2021
Three NIEHS Superfund Research Program events focus on how data science can be harnessed to better study contaminants.
Biomarker suggests severity of COVID-19 respiratory distress
Environmental Factor - May 2021
In a study funded in part by SRP, researchers at the University of California, Davis reported that certain fatty acids in the blood of COVID-19 patients may predict the severity of adult respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS). The fatty acids may also offer a target for treatment. ARDS, characterized by fluid buildup in the lungs, is the second leading cause of death in COVID-19 patients, according to the National Center for Biotechnology Information.
New Approach to Remove Chemicals from Animal Derived Foods
SRP News Page - January 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.
New Tool Monitors a Flame Retardant in Sediment
Research Brief - October 2020
Researchers at the University of California, Davis (UC Davis) Superfund Research Program (SRP) Center developed a new, inexpensive tool to reliably detect small amounts of tetrabromobisphenol A (TBBPA) in environmental samples. TBBPA is a flame retardant commonly found in household dust, soil, water, sewage, sludge, and sediments.
K.C. Donnelly Externships awarded to outstanding Superfund trainees
Environmental Factor - August 2020
Eleven outstanding trainees in the NIEHS Superfund Research Program (SRP) have won K.C. Donnelly Externship Award Supplements. The annual awards allow trainees to work side-by-side with experts at an outside institution to learn new methods and techniques to enrich their research.
Enzyme may play key role in obesity-related leaky gut
Environmental Factor - May 2020
A new NIEHS-funded study suggests that intestinal problems connected to obesity are associated with an enzyme known as soluble epoxide hydrolase (sEH).
Researchers Identify Compounds that Reduce Abnormal Blood Vessel Growth in the Eye
Research Brief - July 2018
Scientists have identified key compounds produced when the body metabolizes omega fatty acids that can reduce the severity of age-related macular degeneration (AMD) in mice. By increasing these lipid metabolites and preventing them from degrading, the researchers reduced abnormal blood vessel growth, in part by regulating the movement of inflammatory immune cells into the retina.
Enzyme plays key role in Parkinson's disease
Paper of the Month - July 2018
New research by NIEHS grantees and colleagues suggested an enzyme in the brain plays a key role in Parkinson's disease (PD). Scientists demonstrated that inhibiting the enzyme soluble epoxide hydrolase (sEH) in mice helped curb the inflammation associated with the development and progression of PD.
Millions of dollars saved by NIEHS-funded technologies
Environmental Factor - July 2018
More than $100 million was saved through the adoption of tools supported by the Superfund Research Program (SRP), according to a commentary published June 15 in the journal Environmental Health Perspectives. The tools also led to additional benefits to society, including hazardous substance remediation and site monitoring.
Enzyme plays key role in Parkinson's disease and inflammation
Environmental Factor - June 2018
New research partially funded by NIEHS suggests an enzyme in the brain plays a key role in Parkinson's disease (PD). Scientists demonstrated that inhibiting an enzyme known as soluble epoxide hydrolase (sEH) can help curb the inflammation associated with the development and progression of PD.
Possible explanation for male and female cardiovascular differences
Paper of the Month - March 2018
NIEHS grantees discovered that estrogen can block the function of soluble epoxide hydrolase (sEH), an enzyme in cells that degrades chemically stable fatty acid metabolites. Because inhibition of sEH can be cardioprotective, this finding may help explain why women generally have a lower incidence of cardiovascular disease than men.
Survival of the resilient: rapid killifish evolution evades pollution
Environmental Factor - January 2017
A study published Dec. 9 in the journal Science and funded in part by NIEHS sheds light on genetic variability that may explain the survival of killifish in four polluted environments on the U.S. eastern seaboard. A team led by Andrew Whitehead, Ph.D., an NIEHS grantee at the University of California at Davis (UCD), sequenced the entire genome of nearly 400 killifish from eight sites along the Atlantic coast and reported that changes in genes in the aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AHR) pathway might hold the key to adaptation.
FDA ban on antibacterials in soaps informed by SRP research
Environmental Factor - October 2016
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued a rule Sept. 2 banning 19 antibacterial chemicals as ingredients in over-the-counter (OTC) antibacterial hand and body washes. Development of the final rule was informed by research that included several studies from scientists supported by the NIEHS Superfund Research Program (SRP).
Anti-inflammatory chemical may offer new tool for depression treatment
Paper of the Month - May 2016
An NIEHS grantee and colleagues discovered that a chemical inhibitor of the soluble epoxide hydrolase (sEH) enzyme may be a new tool to treat depression. The enzyme plays a key role in inflammation, which is involved in depression.
Hammock recognized with first McGiff Memorial Award
Environmental Factor - April 2016
NIEHS grantee Bruce Hammock, Ph.D., a toxicologist and entomologist at the University of California, Davis (UCD), is the first recipient of the John C. McGiff Memorial Award for Contributions to Eicosanoid Research.
A New Dilution Tool to Facilitate High-Throughput Assay Techniques
Research Brief - April 2016
A new tool provides a quick and easy way to dilute samples for biochemical and biological analyses.
Detecting Environmental Chemicals with Novel Immunoassay Technology
Research Brief - March 2015
A new low-cost portable device uses a smart phone to detect the presence and concentrations of BDE-47 (2,2’,4,4’-tetrabromodiphenyl ether), a type of flame retardant and widespread environmental contaminant.
Translating research into products to improve public health
Environmental Factor - June 2014
What do a new eco-friendly cleanup chemical, a mercury-sensing device, and pathogen-detection technology have in common? They are all products of small business startups spun out of NIEHS-funded basic research, recognized for innovation.
Novel Pathway Involved in Neurodevelopmental Toxicity of PCBs
Research Brief - March 2014
Non-dioxin-like (NDL) polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) are widespread environmental contaminants previously associated with neurological disorders in children. In a new study funded in part by the University of California UC), researchers demonstrated a novel mechanism of PCB developmental neurotoxicity.
SRP grantee receives prestigious Brodie Award
Environmental Factor - March 2014
Bruce Hammock, Ph.D., a longtime NIEHS Superfund Research Program (SRP) grantee, was honored by the American Society for Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics (ASPET) with the biennial Bernard B. Brodie Award in Drug Metabolism.
Research supported by NIEHS informs policy and regulatory discussion
Environmental Factor - February 2014
NIEHS-funded researchers found themselves at center stage in the national discussion concerning policy and regulatory issues related to environmental public health.