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Rachel S. Bergmans, PhD, MPH
As a Center Scientist Rachel Bergmans, PhD, MPH, is investigating environmental contributions to suicide-related behavior, including atmospheric aeroallergens, and whether susceptibility varies by sociodemographic status. Through rotations with the M-LEEaD Cores, Dr. Bergmans will receive training in testing biological pathways by which environmental exposures influence suicide-related behavior. Additionally, M-LEEaD training in community engaged research will increase the capacity of Dr. Bergmans’ work to inform policies and practices aimed at reducing the burden of suicide-related behavior in vulnerable communities.

Dr. Bergmans is a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the University of Michigan Institute for Social Research, having received her PhD in 2017 from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Her scientific contributions highlight the biological and behavioral processes linking environment-related factors with mental health. This Center Scientist Award is an exciting opportunity for Dr. Bergmans to receive mentored training in environmental health that will facilitate her transition to research independence.

Simone Charles, PhD, MS
As a Center Scientist Simone Charles, PhD, MS, is investigating the efficacy of a youth-informed citizen science curriculum intended to increase environmental health literacy, promote improved health outcomes, increase youth empowerment, and promote resiliency for change for themselves and their communities. This curriculum will integrate gene-environment, epigenetics, and bioinformatics into community-based citizen science research with youth in underserved communities and how these youth can utilize these areas to inform community action around environmental health disparities. Her practice-based research will lay the groundwork that will inform a place-based, culturally appropriate strategy for youth to engage in advancing environmental health, develop an effective environmental health literacy program, and propose policy suggestions and decision-making in response to environmental justice. It will also provide opportunities to empower youth to take action to educate themselves, their peers and their community on ways to reduce or eliminate risk factors within their control, while actively working to change modifiable environmental risk factors.

Dr. Charles is an Associate Clinical Professor at the University of Michigan, School of Public Health, Environmental Health Sciences Department. She received her PhD in Environmental Chemistry and Toxicology; postdoctoral fellowship in Environmental Health Sciences. The Center Scientist award enables her to interact with a multidisciplinary team and gain expertise in complementary research areas through the rotations in the MLEEaD Cores. It provides dedicated time for her to develop her environmental health practice portfolio and build new partnerships for expanding her work.

         10/19/2020- 12:00 PM - 1:00 PM - Zoom  
IHSC Environmental Statistics Week
"COVID-19 & Racial/Ethnic Disparities: Assessing Treatments Effects in Hospitalized Patients from Underrepresented Minority Groups"

Yanxun Xu, PhD
Assistant Professor, Applied Mathematcis and Statistics
Johns Hopkins University

Zoom Link:
More information contact: Meredith McGehee,
           10/20/2020 - 12:00 PM - 1:00 PM - TBA
IHSC Environmental Statistics Week
"Learning from COVID-19 Data in Wuhan, USA, & the World on Transmission, Interventions, and Infection"
Xihong Lin, PhD
Professor of Biostatistics, 
Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health
           10/21/2020 - 12:00 PM - 1:00 PM - TBA
IHSC Environmental Statistics Week
On COVID-19 Treatment and EHS Challenges
Emily Somers, PhD, ScM
Associate Professor, Rheumatology, Environmental Health Sciences, Obstetrics & Gynecology
MICHR COVID-19 Rapid Response Registry
           10/22/2020 - 12:00 PM - 1:00 PM - TBA
IHSC Environmental Statistics Week
"Environmental Cadmium, Mortality from Influenza and Pneumonia in U.S. Adults"
Sung Kyun Park, ScD, MPH
Associate Professor, Epidemiology
Associate Professor, Environmental Health Sciences

           10/23/2020 - 12:00 PM - 1:00 PM - TBA
IHSC Environmental Statistics Week
"A Spatiotemporal Epidemiological Prediction Model to Inform County-level COVID-19 Risks in the USA"
Peter Song, PhD
Professor of Biostatistics
           11/10/2020 - 12:00 PM - 1:00 PM - TBA
Environmental Research Seminar  
On Vaginal Microbiome Research
Kimberly S. McKee, PhD, MPH
Assistant Professor,  Family Medicine
More information contact: Meredith McGehee,
          11/24/2020 - 12:00 PM - 1:00 PM -TBA   
Environmental Research Seminar  
 On the impact of COVID-19 on Service Workers
Marie-Anne Sanon Rosemberg, PhD, RN
Assistant Professor
Department of Systems, Populations and Leadership
More information contact: Meredith McGehee,
Congratulations to Trish Koman, PhD, MPP, on being awarded the APHA Distinguished Service Award! The award was given in recognition of her work with the Environment Section as co-chair of the Chemicals & Health Topic Committee (National Conversation on Public Health and Chemical Exposures) since 2016, her contribution to drafting APHA public comments on the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) and on children’s environmental health topics, and as a result of this work, serving as an invited contributor to the University of California at San Francisco’s “Resetting the Science Agenda for Chemical Policy” working group.  Trish served over 20 years as a senior environmental scientist at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).  There she served as principal author of landmark national air pollution standards for particulate matter, a standard which withstood a challenge to the U.S. Supreme Court.  Since completion of her PhD, she has dedicated her career to building partnerships with community and practice organizations to continue to further environmental health research and its application to community challenges.  Her deep commitment to creating opportunities for the next generation of scientists and environmental advocates is manifest in her teaching, which emphasizes the creation of opportunities for students to learn how to be effective in diverse, multi-disciplinary settings, and in the use of evidence-based pedagogy to inform environmental decision making.
Due in significant part to Trish’s leadership in developing public comments, in 2018 the Environment Section was presented with APHA’s award for advocacy. Trish continues to make substantial contributions towards environmental health policy and regulatory frameworks, and ongoing contributions to critical education for environmental literacy and advocacy make her an exceptional and deserving candidate for the Environment Section’s Distinguished Service Award!
Recently an interview with Patricia Koman, PhD, MPP, was covered by PBS. Originally Dr. Koman was interviewed last summer by PBS reporter Elliot Corbin from Frederick V. Pankow Center in Clinton Township, Michigan as part of her PBS Student Reporting Labs project on air pollution in Detroit. 

Watch here,
Richard Neitzel, PhD, was interviewed by digitaltrends on power adapters contribution to global e-waste and Apple’s decision to no longer bundle a power adapter with its Apple Watch smartwatches.  “The environmental impacts of shipping products around the globe are substantial. Even small reductions in packaging materials have the potential to result in large environmental benefits given the massive scale of the global logistics network”, said Dr. Neitzel.

Read the article here,
Karen Peterson DSc, was interviewed by Forbes on the ongoing health effects of lead in, "The Flint Water Crisis Has A Wellness Design Component". “Lead poisoning most often builds up slowly over time, due to repeated contact with small amounts of lead. … Even in small quantities, exposure can cause kidney damage, speech and learning problems, delays in physical growth and seizures”, said Karen Peterson DSc. 

Read the article here,
As part of an NIH initiative, Community Engagement Alliance (CEAL) Against COVID-19 Disparities, Principal investigators, M-LEEaD CEC Co-Leader Barbara Israel, DrPH, and Erica E. Marsh, MD, MSCI, FACOG, were awarded $1M to grow efforts in COVID-19 awareness and education research, especially among populations disproportionally affected by the pandemic. MICHR's Community Engagement team, in partnership with the Detroit Community-Academic Urban Research Center leveraged their connections with researchers and community leaders to create a proposal is designed to advance COVID-19 prevention and reduce health disparities across the state of Michigan.
M-LEEaD Pilot Project Awardees Alexis Handal, PhD, MPH and Lisbeth Iglesias-Rios, PhD discuss the Michigan Farmworker Project with the Detroit Free Press on farm workers safety during COVID-19. “There’s some really important power dynamics at play here, and workers are not empowered to really have control of their working and living conditions”, said Dr. Handal.

Read the article here,
About this Event: 
Public Workshop of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine Perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) are diverse fluorinated organic compounds used to make products that resist heat, stains, oil, and water. They are used in firefighting foams; a wide variety of consumer products, such as packaging, carpeting, and cookware; and in industries such as aerospace, automotive, and electronics. Their manufacture and use have led to widespread distribution and occurrence in the environment. PFAS can be highly mobile and persistent in the environment, and depending on chemical structure, PFAS can accumulate at different levels in human, animal, and plant tissue. The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine will be conducting a workshop to review federal government human health research on PFAS and to identify research and data gaps.

Dates: October 26-27, 2020
This 2-day virtual workshop will address the state of the science and ongoing federal research regarding:

- Human exposure to PFAS,
- Experimental toxicology studies to identify human risks from PFAS,
- Human health outcomes from PFAS exposures,
- Cross cutting issues, such as mixtures and class-based approaches.

This event is free to attend via Zoom. Register here,

The Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy (EGLE) continues to inspect facilities, respond to reports of pollution, and enforce laws and permit conditions that protect public health and the environment during the COVID-19 crisis.

The purpose of this Webinar Series is to help applicants put together a complete application from the beginning of the process to the end and ensure you have included all necessary elements – as well as how to work through some of the most complicated portions.  Air Quality Division staff will walk you through Best Practices as well as some of the more complicated regulations and rules on the books.

October 21, 2020, 10:00 - 11:00 AM
Prevention of Significant Deterioration (PSD)/Nonattainment New Source Review (NNSR) Applicability – Part 1 – Best Available Control Technology (BACT) and NNSR
Wow! That is a lot of acronyms! With recent changes in attainment status for ozone, non-attainment new source review applications have been received along with PSD applications.  Join Air Quality Division staff to discuss PSD and Non-attainment New Source Review.  We will discuss the differences and commonalities between the two.  Also, provide some tips on what to include in your application.

November 10, 2020, 10:00 - 11:00 AM
Prevention of Significant Deterioration (PSD)/Nonattainment New Source Review  (NNSR) Applicability – Part 2 – Baseline and Applicability Analyses
Applicability analyses for air permitting can be daunting.  What do baseline, projected actual, and potential mean?  It can be difficult to navigate and make sure the Air Quality Division has all the information in your application necessary to review your request.  Join Melissa Byrnes to get some tips and information about what to include as well as what you could expect during our review.

To find more follow this link,,9429,7-135-3308_3333-513635--,00.html.
Recent Publications citing M-LEEaD:

Montrose L, Goodrich JM, Morishita M, Kochmanski J, Klaver Z, Cavalcante R, Lumeng JC, Peterson KE, Dolinoy DC. Neonatal Lead (Pb) Exposure and DNA Methylation Profiles in Dried Bloodspots. Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2020 Sep 17;17(18):E6775. doi: 10.3390/ijerph17186775. PMID: 32957503.

Wang X, Mukherjee B, Karvonen-Gutierrez CA, Herman WH, Batterman S, Harlow SD, Park SK. Urinary metal mixtures and longitudinal changes in glucose homeostasis: The Study of Women's Health Across the Nation (SWAN). Environ Int. 2020 Sep 12;145:106109. doi: 10.1016/j.envint.2020.106109. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 32927284.

Conlon KC, Mallen E, Gronlund CJ, Berrocal VJ, Larsen L, O'Neill MS. Mapping Human Vulnerability to Extreme Heat: A Critical Assessment of Heat Vulnerability Indices Created Using Principal Components Analysis. Environ Health Perspect. 2020 Sep;128(9):97001. doi: 10.1289/EHP4030. Epub 2020 Sep 2. PMID: 32875815; PMCID: PMC7466325.

Jansen EC, Hector EC, Goodrich JM, Cantoral A, Téllez Rojo MM, Basu N, Song PXK, Olascoaga LT, Peterson KE. Mercury exposure in relation to sleep duration, timing, and fragmentation among adolescents in Mexico City. Environ Res. 2020 Sep 18:110216. doi:
10.1016/j.envres.2020.110216. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 32956656.

Li HD, Yang C, Zhang Z, Yang M, Wu FX, Omenn GS, Wang J. IsoResolve: Predicting Splice Isoform Functions by Integrating Gene and Isoform-level Features with Domain Adaptation. Bioinformatics. 2020 Sep 23:btaa829. doi: 10.1093/bioinformatics/btaa829. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 32966552.

Click here for a PDF with useful information about NIH Public Access Policy regarding citing the center grant.

Per NIH grants policy, all publications, press releases, and other documents relevant to research funded by the center must include a specific acknowledgement of support. For the EHS Core Center, this statement may read:

“Support for this research was provided by grant P30ES017885 from the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, National Institutes of Health. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the National Institutes of Health.”

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