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Research Briefs by Year: 2024

Superfund Research Program

  • 355 - Environmental Factors Alter PFAS Removal by Specialized Nanomaterials -- Aga, Aich, Bradley
    Release Date: 07/10/2024

    Researchers funded by the NIEHS Superfund Research Program (SRP) revealed how characteristics of water treatment systems may alter the ability of novel nanomaterials to remove PFAS. Scientists should be aware of factors like water pH — a measure of acidic or basic conditions — or salt level to ensure that these nanomaterials effectively remove PFAS in aqueous environments, according to the team based at the State University of New York at Buffalo.

  • 354 - High Seafood Diet May Lead to Increased PFAS Exposure -- Chen
    Release Date: 06/05/2024

    A study funded by the NIEHS Superfund Research Program (SRP) found that consuming some types of commercial seafood in high quantities may increase the risk of PFAS exposure. Led by Celia Chen, Ph.D., Kate Crawford, Ph.D., and Megan Romano, Ph.D., at Dartmouth College, the research team believes their findings can support the development of consumption guidelines to protect communities from further PFAS exposure.

  • 353 - Engineering Hydrogel Beads to Enhance Bioremediation of Groundwater Contaminant -- Semprini, Rochefort, Fogg, Hyman
    Release Date: 05/01/2024

    Oregon State University scientists and engineers developed an approach to cleaning polluted groundwater that uses tiny beads containing chemical-eating bacteria. In this study, funded by the NIEHS Superfund Research Program (SRP), the team identified a formula to maximize bead durability and bioremediation, or the removal of contaminants using bacteria.

  • 352 - Tracking Mercury Conversion and Distribution in Aquatic Environments -- Hsu-Kim
    Release Date: 04/03/2024

    NIEHS Superfund Research Program (SRP)-funded researchers, led by Heileen Hsu-Kim, Ph.D., of the Duke University SRP Center, provided insight into how and at what timescale mercury changes within a wetland ecosystem. They found mercury from different sources is converted into other mercury forms that eventually have similar properties. This finding can inform environmental management or pollution control strategies.

  • 351 - Using Earth Materials to Remove Metals Near Abandoned Mines -- Cerrato
    Release Date: 03/06/2024

    NIEHS Superfund Research Program (SRP)-funded researchers developed a new strategy that uses limestone and a naturally occurring mineral to clean up water contaminated with arsenic and uranium — two of the most frequently detected drinking water pollutants in Tribal communities.

  • 350 - New Model Estimates the Effects of Dioxin on Liver Cholesterol -- Zhang
    Release Date: 02/07/2024

    Scientists funded partly by the NIEHS Superfund Research Program (SRP) developed a computer model to determine the health effects of exposure to dioxins. Researchers use the model to combine data on exposures and on known health outcomes to assess the overall risk chemicals could pose to health. For this study, researchers at the Michigan State University SRP Center and Emory University created a computational model to show how the highly toxic chemical 2,3,7,8- tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin (TCDD) affects biological processes that increase cholesterol levels in the liver.

  • 349 - Mapping Microbe Interactions That Support PCB-Degrading Bacteria -- Mattes
    Release Date: 01/10/2024

    Researchers partially funded by the NIEHS Superfund Research Program (SRP) mapped interactions between microbes that may support the growth of certain bacteria that degrade polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), a harmful contaminant. By harnessing those microbial relationships, researchers could improve the bioremediation, or bacterial breakdown, of PCBs from the environment, according to a team led by Timothy Mattes, Ph.D., University of Iowa SRP Center.

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