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Baylor College of Medicine

Superfund Research Program

Research Experience and Training Coordination Core

Project Leader: Theodore G. Wensel
Co-Investigators: Richard H. Finnell, Naomi Halas (Rice University)
Grant Number: P42ES027725
Funding Period: 2020-2025
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Project Summary (2020-2025)

The Research Experience and Training Coordination Core (RETCC) harnesses the resources of both the Baylor College of Medicine (BCM) and Rice University, both outstanding research institutions that have a solid history of training successful scientists and engineers. These institutions have a long history of academic cooperation, along with the other Texas Medical Center institutions, including the University of Texas Medical Branch (UTMB) and the M.D. Anderson Cancer Center. The BCM-Rice Superfund Research Program (SRP) provides a unique opportunity to create a new and highly innovative training program within the largest medical center in the world, focusing specifically on scientific and medical research related to environmental impacts of Superfund sites. The purpose of the RETCC is to create a cross-disciplinary training environment and mentorship program to help develop next-generation scientists and engineers to tackle complex environmental health and biomedical science challenges relevant to Superfund-oriented research. This RETCC leverages the emerging resources in the Texas Medical Center relating to environmental health and science, including the newly established Training in Precision Environmental Health Sciences (TPEHS) T32, a joint initiative between BCM and the University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston’s School of Public Health. This SRP focuses on detecting and assessing the effect of maternal polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon exposure on fetal and childhood health and health impacts of potential remediation strategies. The research projects encompassed in this SRP expose trainees to innovative approaches, state-of-the-art technologies, and established investigators/mentors to accomplish hypothesis-driven research and to use their findings to bring about lasting change to communities and Superfund stakeholders.

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