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Your Environment. Your Health.

Research Briefs by Year: 2016

Superfund Research Program

  • 253 - Mapping Protein Targets of Environmental Chemicals Using Chemoproteomic Platforms -- Nomura
    Release Date: 01/06/2016

    Using a platform to map the reactivity of environmental chemicals across the proteome may uncover new ways environmental chemicals interact in humans, according to a study from the University of California (UC) Berkeley Superfund Research Program (SRP) Center. Researchers use reactivity-based strategies that mine for distinct sets of proteins throughout the proteome that may be particularly sensitive to environmental chemicals.

  • 254 - Low-Dose Organic Arsenic Exposure Negatively Affects the Immune System in the Lung -- Stanton
    Release Date: 02/03/2016

    Arsenic exposure may alter immune response to a common pathogen in the lung, according to a recent study from the Dartmouth College Superfund Research Program (SRP) Center. This study provides insight into how arsenic exposure may increase the risk of respiratory infection and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, which is associated with chronic bacterial infections and other non-malignant lung infections. The study also helps discern the contribution of organic forms of arsenic alone to the alteration of the innate immune response in the lung.

  • 255 - The Effect of Corrinoid Co-factors on Bioremediation of Chlorinated Compounds -- Loeffler
    Release Date: 03/02/2016

    Specific modifications to helper molecules, or co-factors, play an important role in how efficiently some bacteria can degrade toxic chlorinated pollutants. In a new study, researchers from the University of Tennessee found that specific chemical modifications to corrinoid co-factors, a group of molecules that includes vitamin B12, can affect how well bacteria degrade chlorinated pollutants such as tetrachloroethene (PCE) and trichloroethene (TCE). These findings could help improve cleanup of chlorinated contaminants at hazardous waste sites.

  • 256 - A New Dilution Tool to Facilitate High-Throughput Assay Techniques -- Pan
    Release Date: 04/06/2016

    A new tool provides a quick and easy way to dilute samples for biochemical and biological analyses. The microfluidic dilution generator, developed by researchers led by Tingrui Pan, Ph.D., at the University of California, Davis Superfund Research Program Center, can serve as a simple dilution device in research laboratories, point-of-care clinical settings, and low-resource environments.

  • 257 - Using Field Data and Numerical Modeling to Assess Vapor Intrusion Risk -- Pennell
    Release Date: 05/04/2016

    A recent Superfund Research Program (SRP) study reveals that measurements of chemical concentrations in groundwater may not be a good indicator of whether the chemicals are seeping into buildings and contaminating indoor air. The findings provide insight into how an approach incorporating multiple lines of evidence, including soil gas measurements and a 3-D model, can be used to better evaluate exposure risks from vapor intrusion into homes and buildings.

  • 258 - New Breakthrough in Understanding Gene Regulation -- Swenberg
    Release Date: 06/01/2016

    A team of researchers at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill Superfund Research Program (UNC SRP) Center and Yale University developed a new method to study DNA modifications that led them to a paradigm-shifting discovery of a new mechanism of gene regulation in mouse cells. The new method and resulting discoveries are important breakthroughs that open new possibilities for understanding gene regulation in mice and humans, particularly during development.

  • 259 - Phytostabilization of Mine Tailings with Compost-Assisted Direct Planting -- Maier
    Release Date: 07/06/2016

    Amending mine waste with compost is a viable and promising alternative to the expensive process of covering an entire site with a thick soil or rock cap followed by seeding, according to research from the University of Arizona Superfund Research Program (UA SRP) Center. The trial was based on successful results from preliminary greenhouse studies, which scaled effectively to the field.

  • 260 - Identifying Mechanisms for Regulating Gas Exchange in Plants -- Schroeder
    Release Date: 08/03/2016

    Superfund Research Program (SRP) researchers at the University of California, San Diego (UCSD) are identifying important mechanisms that plants use to respond to changes in the environment. They recently discovered molecular mechanisms that enhance the activity of proteins essential to closing stomata, or pores found on the surface of leaves, in response to environmental stressors.

  • 261 - Importance of Young Dissolved Organic Carbon to the Release of Arsenic in Aquifers -- Bostick
    Release Date: 09/07/2016

    Carbon from relatively new sources of organic material on the surface, or young carbon, can stimulate microbial communities deep in aquifers, leading to the release of arsenic into water, according to a recent field study by Columbia University Superfund Research Program (SRP) Center researchers. The researchers found that near-surface sources of organic carbon are central in microbial metabolism, even in aquifers that are far below and separated from the land where carbon is derived.

  • 262 - Environmental Exposures and AhR in Oral Cancer Development and Progression -- Sherr
    Release Date: 10/05/2016

    The aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AhR) plays an important role in oral cancer, and environmental chemicals and bacteria that activate the AhR may worsen oral cancer development and progression, according to a recent study from the Boston University Superfund Research Program (SRP) Center.

  • 263 - A Link Between Exposure to PCBs, Diet, and Cardiovascular Disease -- Hennig
    Release Date: 11/02/2016

    Researchers at the University of Kentucky Superfund Research Program (UK SRP) Center have identified a new mechanism linking exposure to polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and cardiovascular disease (CVD). They revealed that PCBs can lead to increased production of a biological marker of CVD, which is also linked to consumption of red meat and other animal products, revealing a novel diet-toxicant interaction associated with CVD risk.

  • 264 - The Porous Extraction Paddle: A Non-Targeted Sampling Device to Detect Contaminants in Urine -- Giese
    Release Date: 12/07/2016

    A new tool and accompanying method provides an easy way to extract substances from urine, even where resources are limited. The non-targeted technique, developed by researchers at the Northeastern University Superfund Research Program, can reveal large numbers of exposures to substances foreign to the body, called xenobiotics, from a sample of urine.

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