Author Archives: Savannah Volkoff

ToxSeminar with Sonja Brun

Category : toxseminar

ToxSeminar this Thursday with Sonja Brun


Sonja Brun, a graduate student in the Pharmacology and Cancer Biology Dept. (Wechsler-Reya Lab, Sanford Burnham Medical Research Institute) will be presenting her ITEHP research this Thursday, June 19th. Her talk is titled Molecular Regulators of Stem Cell Fate and Tumor Development in the Cerebellum. The seminar is at Noon in LSRC A158 (due to construction, please enter through the Breezeway located between the LSRC A and B wings). Lunch will be provided at this seminar.


Special Seminar this Friday

Category : Uncategorized

Special ITEHP Seminar this Friday, June 6th with Christina Bear


Christina Bear

Richard Di Giulio and the Integrated Toxicology and Environmental Health Program will be hosting a seminar on Friday, June 6th from 12-1PM in LSRC A158. The guest speaker will be Christina Bear, a high school student from Golden, Colorado. Christina and her brother, Eric, initiated The Radon Awareness Project (RAP) in 2010 to educate the citizens of Colorado on radon, a radioactive gas that comes from uranium decay in soil. Colorado has unusually high levels of radon. Marching from city councils to county health departments and all the way to the State Capitol, the children helped initiate public policy to increase radon awareness. They developed a rap song, appeared in local newspapers, Time for Kids publication and their local television news. In 2011, they presented at the National Radon Conference and International Radon Symposium in Orlando, FL. Christina and her brother won the President’s Environmental Youth Award in 2012, which led them to speak at a breakout session at The White House Summit on Environmental Education.

Christina joins us to present her model of outreach from a youth perspective on radon gas. She will tell us how youth can provide environmental education for their local communities. A recent CDC webinar on the methods of radon outreach shows that several states are working hard on methods of outreach similar to the RAP.  Collaboration is vital to public education of environmental health hazards, such as radon. Adults and children alike can be empowered with knowledge to promote healthy populations.

Christina is dedicated to her community in other ways, including educational support of orphans from South Sudan and conducting a STEM introduction course for low-income minority third graders this summer. She runs cross country for her school’s varsity team and has a keen interest in computing and technology.

We hope you will join us for this special summer seminar! Any questions can be directed to Richard Di Giulio or Savannah Volkoff. If you would like to meet with Christina on Friday before or after her presentation, please contact





Lauren Wyatt wins Best Poster Award at Carolina SETAC!

Category : News

Lauren Wyatt wins Best Poster award at Carolina SETAC this past weekend!


Lauren Wyatt, third year ITEHP student
Lauren Wyatt, third year ITEHP student

Congratulations to Lauren Wyatt who received the award for Best Poster this past Saturday at Carolina SETAC (Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry) hosted by Clemson University. Lauren’s poster featured her research on the impacts of mercury exposure on developing C.elegans. She has found that exposure to mercury reduces the number of C.elegans offspring, impacts their length, and increases generation time.  Exposure to mercury in a 24 hour period reduces mitochondrial DNA copy number, nuclear DNA copy number, body length, and the ratio of mitochondrial DNA to nuclear DNA copy number.

“It was an interesting experience because it was the first time I’d received feedback on my project from people who are not directly involved in the work,” said Lauren about speaking with others during the poster session at CSETAC.

Lauren will continue to examine immune responses in sensitive C.elegans strains and test the generational, genotoxic, and immunotoxic endpoints in other mercury species.

Lauren is a third year Integrated Toxicology and Environmental Health Program & Nicholas School of the Environment graduate student co-advised by Dr. Bill Pan and Dr. Joel Meyer.

Lauren Wyatt presents her poster to graduate students at CSETAC.
Lauren Wyatt presents her poster to graduate students at CSETAC.

Seminar this Friday with Pauline Mendola

Category : toxseminar

This Friday, April 25th, Dr. Pauline Mendola joins us at Duke for ToxSeminar. Her presentation is titled, Complications of Pregnancy Associated with Asthma and the Impact of Poor Air Quality. 

Seminar will begin at Noon in LSRC A247. You can only enter the building through the main entryway or through the B-wing.


Pauline Mendola

Ram Ramabhadran, Ph.D. (USEPA) joins us this Friday for ToxSeminar

Category : toxseminar

ram-ramabhadranRam Ramabhadran, Ph.D. US EPA (retired)

Dr. Ramabhadran joins us for ToxSeminar this Friday, April 11th at Noon. His talk is titled, Tox 21 in the Rearview Mirror: Climbing Everest with Sandals. We are looking forward to Dr. Ramabhadran’s visit and hope you can join us.



Paul J. Lioy visits Duke for ToxSeminar

Category : toxseminar




Dr. Paul Lioy from Rutgers University will be visiting Duke University on Friday, April 4th. His talk is titled, Exposure Science: The Other Half of Environmental and Human Risk Assessment, and will be presented in LSRC A247 at Noon. This talk is co-sponsored by CEINT and Pratt School of Engineering.


Seminar with Dr. Chuan-Yuan Li on 3/28

Category : toxseminar

Dr. Chuan-Yuan Li will be speaking at ToxSeminar this Friday, March 28, at Noon. Dr. Li is a faculty member in the ITEHP as well as the Departments of Dermatology and Pharmacology & Cancer Biology. The talk is titled, Unexpected Roles of Caspases in Stem Cell Regulations, Carcinogenesis, and Cancer Treatment. 

We hope to see you this Friday!


210_li (1)

Spring Symposium Recap

Category : News , Symposium

On March 7th, ITEHP co-hosted the Spring 2014 Symposium, Cognitive Impairment Caused by Developmental Neurotoxic Exposure: Mechanisms, Consequences and Therapeutic Treatment, at the Searle Center. All images are courtesy of Steve McCaw, NIEHS.


Dr. Susan K. Murphy, Director of Duke NICHES Children’s Environmental Health and Disease Prevention Research Center




Susan Murphy, Ph.D., welcomes guests to the Spring 2014 Symposium, which was hosted by Duke’s Integrated Toxicology and Environmental Health Program, the Duke Superfund Research Center, and the Duke NICHES Children’s Environmental Health and Disease Prevention Research Center.




Edward Levin, Ph.D.
Edward Levin, Ph.D.




Dr. Edward Levin introduces the symposium theme, Cognitive Impairment Caused by Developmental Neurotoxic Exposure: Mechanisms, Consequences and Therapeutic Treatment. Dr. Levin is the director of the Neural and Behavioral Toxicity Assessment Core in the Duke Superfund Research Center.








Phillip Landrigan, M.D., M.Sc., Mount Sinai School of Medicine
Phillip Landrigan, M.D., M.Sc., Mount Sinai School of Medicine





Dr. Phil Landrigan visits Duke to present his talk titled, The Vunerable Developing Human Brain is Impacted by Toxic Environmental ExposuresLandrigan encouraged attendees to get involved in community outreach activities and to practice research translation to non-scientific audiences.








Frederica Perera, Dr.P.H., Ph.D., Columbia University
Frederica Perera, Dr.P.H., Ph.D., Columbia University




Dr. Frederica Perera from Columbia University explains her work in a talk titled, Molecular Epidemiology and the Impacts of Prenatal and Early Childhood Exposure to Environmental Neurotoxicants in a New York City Cohort. Studies show the odds of impacts on brain development in kids with high exposures to PAHs are almost three-times greater than kids without exposure. To learn more about children’s environmental health, visit the Columbia Center for Children’s Environmental Health website.






Kim Dietrich, Ph.D., M.A., University of Cincinnati
Kim Dietrich, Ph.D., M.A., University of Cincinnati




Dr. Kim Dietrich talks about childhood exposure to lead in his presentation: The Societal and Economic Costs of Cognitive and Behavioral Impairments due to Developmental Neurotoxicity Across the Lifespan: the Case of Lead.  Dietrich’s research shows that beyond IQ levels, there is a relationship between lead exposure and criminal behavior in adolescents and adults.









Scott Kollins, Ph.D., Duke University
Scott Kollins, Ph.D., Duke University



Dr. Scott Kollins of Duke University presents Unpacking the ADHD Phenotype: Relevance for Understanding the Effects of Environmental Exposures. He explains there is an increase in the prevalence of ADHD and environmental exposures. A recent study conducted by Duke’s NICHES program finds an association between ADHD and secondhand smoke. For more information, follow this link.












Dr. Ed Levin returns to the podium to present his research in Long-term Cognitive Impacts from Early Life Exposure to Pesticides and Nicotine in Rats and Zebrafish. His research shows there are normal sex differences in brain function that are obliterated or reversed from environmental exposures. Click here to see Dr. Levin and Dr. Slotkin’s most recent publication on the effects of prenatal co-exposure to dexamethasone and chlorpyrifos. For a summary of this article and another by T.Slotkin, check out Duke Superfund’s ToxInsider blog.








Theodore Slotkin, Ph.D., Duke University
Theodore Slotkin, Ph.D., Duke University





Dr. Theodore Slotkin presents a talk titled, Nicotine, Tobacco, and Brain Development, from Fetus to Adolescent: Finding the Smoking Gun. His research shows that the drug taken continuously impacts the brain far more than the episodic drug. 








Charles Vorhees, Ph.D., Cincinnato Children's Hospital
Charles Vorhees, Ph.D., Cincinnato Children’s Hospital





Dr. Charles Vorhees presents Cognitive and Behavioral Effects of Developmental Exposure to Manganese and Stress in Rats. He presented data showing how early life exposure to manganese effects rats’ sociability, depression, and anxiety.








 Thank you for attending our Spring 2014 Symposium! 








Genetics and Environmental Mutagenesis Society Spring Meeting

Category : News , Symposium

Genetics and Environmental Mutagenesis Society

GEMS Spring Meeting – April 28, 2014

U.S. EPA, RTP Campus Auditorium



               In October 2013, the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), a specialized agency of the World Health Organization (WHO), evaluated outdoor air pollution and particulate matter as a Group 1 (known) human lung carcinogen.  This symposium will present some of the key data used to support this evaluation as well as some of its implications.


Registration Cost:  Free

Registration Procedure:  Register by e-mailing Dr. William Ward at  Please provide (a) your name and (b) whether you plan to attend in person or via webinar.  Please register by April 18 to insure adequate webinar capacity.  Webinar information will be provided prior to the meeting on the GEMS website at http:/


Requirement for Entry to EPA:  For detailed directions to the EPA campus link to:  For those attending in person, please enter the U.S. EPA facility on T.W. Alexander Drive in RTP through the front lobby of Building C and provide a photo I.D. to the guard at the desk.  If you want to bring a laptop, you must complete a form provided by the guard at the time of entry.



  8:50 –   9:00            Welcome:    Channa Keshava (EPA, RTP, GEMS President-Elect) and Bill Kaufman (UNC, GEMS President)

9:00 –   9:10            Overview

David DeMarini (EPA/RTP)

9:10 – 10:10            Lung Cancer Epidemiology of Outdoor Air Pollution

Aaron Cohen (Health Effects Institute, Boston)

10:15 – 10:30            Coffee Break

10:30 – 11:30            Mutagenicity of Outdoor Air Pollution Worldwide

Paul A. White (Health Canada, Ottawa)

11:30 –   1:00            Lunch (on your own/EPA cafeteria)

1:00 –   1:30            Carcinogenicity of Polluted Air in Experimental Animals

George M. Woodall Jr. (EPA, RTP)

1:30 –   2:00            Genotoxicity & Epigenetics of Polluted Air in Humans

David M. DeMarini (EPA, RTP)

2:00 –   2:45            How Air Pollution is Regulated by the U.S. EPA

Bryan J. Hubbell (EPA, RTP)

2:45 –   3:00            Discussion


 Bio-sketches of Speakers

Dr. Aaron J. Cohen

Dr. Cohen is Principal Scientist at the Health Effects Institute (HEI) in Boston, MA, where he has worked since 1990. At HEI Dr. Cohen manages an international program of epidemiologic research on the health effects of air pollution, and is involved in developing and managing HEI’s US and international research programs. In these capacities he led HEI’s review of the literature on the health effects of air pollution in the developing countries of Asia, and is co-coordinator of HEI’s Health Outcomes Research program, which assesses the health impacts of actions taken to improve air quality. Past HEI responsibilities have included: the organization and management of epidemiologic research projects such as the Reanalysis of the American Cancer Society and Six-City studies of air pollution and mortality, and multi- city time-series studies of air pollution and daily mortality in Europe, North America Asia and Latin America. Dr. Cohen has served since 1999 as a Temporary Advisor to the World Health Organization (WHO) on the evaluation of epidemiologic evidence, air pollution health impact assessment, and air quality guideline development. He co-chaired the Expert Group that produced estimates of the global burden of disease due to Ambient Air Pollution for the Global Burden of Disease 2010 project and is a member of the Core Analytic Team or Global Burden of Disease 2013.

Dr. Cohen holds a D.Sc. in Epidemiology (1991), and Masters in Public Health (1985) from the Boston University School of Public Health, where he is Adjunct Assistant Professor of Environmental Health. He is also a Registered Respiratory Therapist (RRT), and worked for 15 years in newborn intensive care, and subsequently as Research Associate in Perinatal Epidemiology, at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston.


Aaron J Cohen, MPH DSc

Principal Scientist

Health Effects Institute

101 Federal Street Suite 500

Boston, MA 02110-1817

TEL 617-488-2325


Dr. Paul A. White

Dr. White is currently a Canadian government research scientist, and adjunct professor of biology at the University of Ottawa.  With respect to the former he is the Leader of the Genetic Toxicology Lab Group. With respect to the latter, he is a member of the Centre for Advanced Research in Environmental Genomics, the Ottawa-Carleton Institute of Biology, and the graduate program in Chemical and Environmental Toxicology.  He received his B.S. and Ph.D. from McGill University in Montreal, Canada.  He currently (2014) has 24 years of multidisciplinary research experience investigating the sources, fate and hazards of mutagenic and carcinogenic contaminants; in particular those presented as complex mixtures in complex environmental matrices (e.g., urban air, vehicle, contaminated soils).  He has coordinated and guest edited the most up-to-date compilations on the sources, fate and hazards of environmental mutagens in complex matrices (e.g., air, water, soil, sediment).  The series of 13 review articles, which includes three from his group, was published in Mutation Research Reviews in 2004 and 2007.  As such, Dr. White is one of the leading experts on environmental mutagens, and in particular, mutagens in complex environmental matrices. His current work is investigating the sources, fate and hazards of mutagens and carcinogens in contaminated soils, vehicular exhausts, settled house dust, contaminated urban air, tobacco smoke, and cannabis smoke.  In addition, his current work is investigating the suitability of various in vitro and in vivo approaches for genetic toxicity assessment, regulatory decision-making, and risk assessment, and employing genomic and proteomic methods to identify biomarkers of exposure to, or effect from, environmental mutagens in complex matrices. He has established numerous national and international collaborations involving the University of Toronto, Texas A&M University, the University of Saskatchewan, the University of Ottawa, Carleton University, Umeå University (Sweden), the Danish National Research Centre for the Working Environment, King’s College, London, Swansea University, Litron Laboratories, BioReliance Corp, Integrated Laboratory Systems, the USFDA, the USEPA, Dow, Sanofi-Aventis, the International Life Sciences Institute (ILSI), and the RIVM (Holland). He has been invited to participate in numerous national and international activities coordinated by ECVAM, ECETOC, COLIPA, ILSI, and IARC. He served as Editor-in-Chief of Environmental and Molecular Mutagenesis (EMM) from 2007 to 2011, and is currently a member of the editorial boards of EMM and Mutation Research Reviews.


Paul A. White, Ph.D.

Environmental Health Sciences & Research Bureau

Health Canada

Tunney’s Pasture 0803a

Ottawa, Ontario K1A 0L2


TEL 613-941-7373


Dr. George M. Woodall, Jr.

Dr. Woodall received his Ph.D. in Toxicology from North Carolina State University in 1996, and previously attained a Master’s of Science in Environmental Health from East Tennessee State University (1985) and a Bachelor of Science in Microbiology and Cell Science (1983) from the University of Florida. Dr. Woodall currently serves as a Toxicologist at the National Center for Environmental Assessment (NCEA) of the US EPA, where he works under the Human Health Risk Assessment Program in performing chemical risk assessments, and in developing and improving risk assessment methods. He is actively reviewing and analyzing the potential neurotoxic and cancer effects from styrene exposure; provides scientific support to the Office of Air Quality Planning and Standards of the US EPA for the Risk and Technology Review program; and actively co-leads an interagency Information Management Working Group which strives to provide a basis for collaborative approaches and sharing of the key information relevant to developing human health risk assessments. Dr. Woodall has served on the National Advisory Committee for Acute Exposure Guideline Levels (AEGLs), and has served on or chaired several expert panels for the OECD. He received the 2008 Science and Technology Achievement Award for the paper: A review of the mutagenicity and rodent carcinogenicity of ambient air, which was co-authored with Larry Claxton. He previously held the position of Senior Toxicologist with the American Petroleum Institute (API); while in that position, he led the organization for and chaired a symposium on health research and risk assessment for hydrogen sulfide. He is author or co-author of over 20 peer-reviewed articles and book chapters, and numerous governmental and intergovernmental reports. Dr. Woodall is also active as an officer in the Risk Assessment Specialty Section of the Society of Toxicology, is a current Councilor for the Genetic and Environmental Mutagenesis Society (GEMS), and a past-chair of the Dose Response Specialty Group of the Society for Risk Analysis.


Dr. George M. Woodall, Jr.

National Center for Environmental Assessment

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

Research Triangle Park, NC 27711

TEL 919-541-3896


Dr. David M. DeMarini

Dr. DeMarini received the B.S. (1972), M.S. (1974), and Ph.D. (1980) in Biological Sciences (genetics) at Illinois State University, Normal, IL, studying under Dr. Herman E. Brockman.  From 1980-1982, he did postdoctoral research at the Biology Division, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Oak Ridge, TN.  He then was a Research Geneticist at the National Toxicology Program, National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS), Research Triangle Park, NC from 1983-1984.  He began his current position as a Genetic Toxicologist at the US Environmental Protection Agency (US EPA), Research Triangle Park, NC in 1985.  He is also an Adjunct Professor, Dept. of Environ. Sci. & Engineering, School of Public Health, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, NC (1991-present).  He is a member of the Environmental Mutagenesis and Genomics Society (EMGS) and the Genetics and Environmental Mutagenesis Society (GEMS).  He has served as President of EMGS, GEMS, and of the International Association of Environmental Mutagenesis and Genomics Societies (IAEMGS).  He is an Editor of Mutation Research–Reviews (1998-present) and is on the Editorial Board of Environmental and Molecular Mutagenesis (1984-1989, 1993-present) and Genes and Environment (2006-present).  He has organized conferences, symposia, and training courses internationally, and has given invited lectures at more than 130 conferences in 55 countries.  He has served on both the1986 and 2004 Tobacco Smoking and Cancer Monographs of the International Association for Research on Cancer (IARC) with WHO in Lyon, France, as well as the IARC Monographs on Drinking Water/Arsenic, Indoor Air, Human Carcinogens, Auto and Diesel Exhaust, and Outdoor Air.  He Chaired the IARC Monograph on Drinking Water, Food, and Industrial Chemicals (2011).  He has published >170 articles and received the Alexander Hollaender Award from the EMGS in 2011.  He has mentored 20 graduate students and postdocs through is adjunct professorship at UNC-Chapel Hill.  His research interests are molecular mechanisms of mutagenesis, mutation spectra, complex mixtures, and biomarkers of mutation in humans.

Dr. David M. DeMarini

Integrated Systems Toxicology Division (B105-03)

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

Research Triangle Park, NC 27711

TEL 919-541-1510


Dr. Bryan J. Hubbell

Dr.  Hubbell leads the Risk and Benefits Group in the Health and Environmental Impacts Division of the Office of Air and Radiation in the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. He has written and presented extensively in the U.S. and internationally on the health and environmental impacts of air pollution and economic benefits and costs of air quality regulations, serving as the principal benefits analyst for many of EPA’s regulatory analyses over the last decade, and led the project team that developed the environmental Benefits Mapping and Analysis Program (BenMAP).  He obtained his B.S. in political science from Appalachian State University in Boone, NC, and his Ph.D. in economics from North Carolina State University in Raleigh.  His research interests include health and environmental impact assessments methods and improving methods for the valuation of health and environmental changes.


Dr. Bryan J. Hubbell

Health and Environmental Impacts Division

Office of Air and Radiation

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

Research Triangle Park, NC 27711

TEL 919-541-0621

ToxSeminar with Simon Roberts

Category : toxseminar

This Friday ITEHP PhD Candidate, Simon Roberts, will present his research in a talk titled PBDE Metabolism and Effects on Thyroid Hormone Regulation in Cultured Human Astrocytes. His talk will be held in LSRC A247 from Noon-1:30PM. We hope to see you there!



My location
Get Directions

April 2020