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Brown University

Superfund Research Program

Training Core

Project Leader: Agnes B. Kane
Grant Number: P42ES013660
Funding Period: 2005-2021

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Project Summary (2015-2021)

The Brown SRP Training Core will build on the rich educational and research environment at Brown University to develop a unique and integrated educational, research, and community engagement experience focused on the human health impacts of environmental and industrial contamination in Rhode Island. Predoctoral and postdoctoral trainees will provide the integrating force for collaboration and communication between biomedical scientists, engineers, and social scientists and with academic, government, and community partners. Four aims are proposed to achieve these objectives:

  1. Develop a series of short courses and interactive workshops to prepare graduate and postdoctoral trainees for active participation in interdisciplinary research projects and research translation activities in environmental health and engineering.
  2. Engage trainees in bidirectional knowledge exchange with community partners, government agencies, and Rhode Island Native Americans in collaboration with the Community Engagement Core.
  3. Promote interprofessional interactions and communication between undergraduate, medical, and nursing students and health professionals in Rhode Island in collaboration with the Community Engagement Core.
  4. Facilitate the professional development of trainees as the next generation of environmental scientists and engineers in collaboration with the Research Translation Core.

The Training Core will focus on interdisciplinarity in providing educational, research, and community engagement opportunities for the pre- and postdoctoral trainees working on biomedical and engineering research projects within the Brown SRP. The collaborative research project areas are: biomarkers and toxicity testing, nanotechnology applications and safety, nanomaterial vapor barriers, and vapor intrusion and health monitoring. Trainees will receive hands-on training in state-of-the-art research techniques and bioinformatics provided by the Molecular Pathology Core and the Administrative Core, and the Analytical Chemistry and NanoTools centralized facilities at Brown University. The trainees will engage and communicate with community partners, government agencies, and local health professionals to apply their didactic and laboratory research training to address environmental health and remediation problems associated with complex exposures to industrial contaminants in Rhode Island. The Training Core will support four predoctoral trainees enrolled in graduate programs in pathobiology, engineering, chemistry, and social sciences at Brown University during the summer following completion of their preliminary examination. They will work in interdisciplinary research teams and pursue fieldwork at contaminated waste sites or externships in industry and public agencies in collaboration with the Community Engagement and Research Translation Cores.

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