EOH Faculty & Research News

Indiana steel mill emits 18,000 pounds of lead a year, Fabisiak comments

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CHICAGO TRIBUNE - The ArcelorMittal steel mill at the Port of Indiana in Burns Harbor emitted 173,000 pounds of benzene during 2016, making it the nation’s largest industrial source of a volatile chemical known to cause leukemia. More could be on the way but regulators can't explain where the steel mill's pollution ends up. “It’s a constant fight,” said EOH's JAMES FABISIAK.   

Is there a connection between Pittsburgh's high rates of asthma and autoimmune disorders?

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Environmental Health News - Pittsburgh would be an ideal place for further study on the links between air pollution, asthma, and autoimmune disease, says EOH chair SALLY WENZEL. "There's a lot of evidence now that what you breathe may impact your lungs in many ways, and could actually start an autoimmune process. That's a link we haven't fully explored in this region yet."  

Wenzel says biologic improves severe asthma outcomes

MEDPAGE - Two trials showed that dupilumab was associated with reduced exacerbations, better lung function and improved asthma control in patients with moderate-to-severe uncontrolled asthma. EOH professor SALLY WENZEL says, “for patients who have a lot of comorbidities, and are missing a lot of work or school, it has the potential to be cost effective.” 

Goldstein on EPA’s disregard for the science behind the Clean Air Act

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THE HILL - “In the name of ‘cooperative federalism,’ Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt is out to gut one of the finest examples of cooperative federalism in environmental law — that of setting outdoor air pollutant standards,” writes EOH’s BERNARD GOLDSTEIN. “This new approach... should be judged in conjunction with other major decisions about the incorporation of science into EPA.” 

Are proposed EPA rules a move toward transparency or an attack on science? Goldstein weighs in.

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CHRISTIAN SCIENCE MONITOR - A proposal by the EPA administrator that aims to limit the scientific research that the agency can use to set rules illustrates a widening rift between republicans and the scientific community. If finalized, the action would limit studies only to those whose data is publicly available. In environmental health research perfect, randomized, double-blind clinical studies aren’t possible, says EOH's BERNARD GOLDSTEIN.   

EOH's Aaron Barchowsky receives 2018 Craig Teaching Award

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Congratulations to EOH's AARON BARCHOWSKY who received the award for the passion and interest with which he teaches, for always encouraging his students, and his constant work to improve as an instructor. As one nominator put it, "He respects students and he is the best professor I've known."   

Sally E. Wenzel appointed chair of the Department of Environmental and Occupational Health

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SALLY E. WENZEL will take over as chair of the Department of Environmental and Occupational Health starting May 1, 2018. As chair, Wenzel will extend her work on airway disease to build a research program that spans clinical, bench, and environmental exposure science, amplifying the exceptional strengths already present in the department.  

Goldstein on memories of the EPA’s most tumultuous era. But there’s a key difference now

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THE WASHINGTON POST - Observers of both the Reagan administration and the current one say there are several reasons to think Pruitt may not share Gorsuch’s fate. Reagan appears to have made a calculation that he needed to tack to the political center on the environment later in his first term, and so replaced Gorsuch. But Trump seems more inclined to double down on deregulation, said EOH's BERNARD GOLDSTEIN.  

Goldstein on the EU's distortion of public health and effects on US agricultural produce

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THE HILL - The European Union's unclear definitions of the Precautionary Principles allows them to ban trade of goods such as beef previously treated with growth hormones and GMO grains without demonstration that such goods cause any health risks. EOH's BERNARD GOLDSTEIN says, "The US is not without unfair trade practices. But, in contrast to the EU, we do not rely on distorting public health science as a means to wrap greed in a green flag."  

EPI's Adibi addresses 2018 One Health One Community Symposium at Phipps

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EPI's JENNIFER ADIBI was a featured speaker for the 2018 One Health One Community Symposium at Phipps Conservatory.  The event centered on the theme "Health Impacts: Chemicals of Concern in the Environment," with a special focus on endocrine disruptors.   

Goldstein advises Dow Chemical on sustainability

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SUSTAINABLE BRANDS - The Dow Chemical Company counts EOH's BERNARD GOLDSTEIN among its 8-member Sustainability External Advisory Council (SEAC),  the first of its kind in the petrochemical industry. The council has a significant influence on Dow’s approach to sustainability and environment, health and safety issues, providing “an independent, outside-in perspective on critical issues related to sustainability and environmental policy that impact ... 

Kagan helps find mechanism of dendritic cell needed for antitumor immune response

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DRUG TARGET REVIEW - A team including EOH researcher VALERIAN KAGAN has revealed the mechanism causing defective function of tumour-associated dendritic cells, explaining why they’re ineffective in inducing antitumor immune responses and effective cancer treatment. The findings could lead to new strategies for improving the response to immunotherapy. 

Goldstein comments on new study findings: Low birth weights linked to fracking sites

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STATE IMPACT - Infants born to mothers who live very close to natural gas fracking sites have a higher risk of low birth weight, according to a new peer-reviewed study published Wednesday in the journal Science Advances . In response to the findings, EOH professor emeritus BERNARD GOLDSTEIN noted that children born with low birth weight have a greater risk of infant mortality, asthma, lower test scores, and lower lifetime earnings. He said, to m... 

Kagan and Bayir unlock clues to cell death

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PITTSBURGH POST-GAZETTE - “Better treatments for traumatic brain injury and acute kidney injuries are desperately needed,” stated Hulya Bayir HULYA BAYIR (EOH). VALERIAN KAGAN (EOH), the study’s senior author, was key in discovering the protein’s important role in the cell-death process. 

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