|NIEHS Awards Outstanding New Environmental Scientists
Five-year grants totaling $3.5 million will go to seven exceptionally
talented and creative investigators in the early stages of their
careers, the National Institute of Environmental Health Science
(NIEHS), part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), announced
today. The awards are being made under NIEHS's Outstanding New
Environmental Sciences (ONES) program.
"The ONES program is an important part of our efforts to
help establish the careers of creative, talented young scientists
and to allow them to apply their talents to the field of environmental
health sciences," said Dennis Lang, Ph.D., Interim Director,
NIEHS Division of Extramural Research and Training.
The ONES program, in its second year of funding, identifies outstanding
scientists who are in the early, formative stages of their careers
and who intend to make a long term career commitment to research
in the mission areas of the NIEHS. The program assists them in
launching an innovative research program focusing on problems of
environmental exposures and human biology, human pathophysiology
and human disease.
"The grantees selected through this very competitive and
rigorous review process epitomize the breadth of the NIEHS research
program," said J. Patrick Mastin, Ph.D., chief of the NIEHS
Cellular, Organ and Systems Pathobiology Branch, which coordinates
the ONES program. "These scientists are focusing on conditions
such as ADHD, early puberty, aging and lung diseases and determining
how these conditions relate to specific environmental exposures.
Their research will play a pivotal role in helping to develop new
prevention and treatment strategies."
The following is a list of the 2007 ONES program awardees:
- Brent Carter, M.D., University of Iowa, Iowa City, will study
the mechanism that causes lung inflammation and fibrosis after
exposure to asbestos.
- Wenbin Deng, Ph,D., University of California, Davis, will use
a combination of cellular and molecular techniques to study the
mechanisms which causes lead to be neurotoxic in the developing
- Cheryl L. Fattman, Ph.D., University of Pittsburgh School of
Public Health, will conduct studies to help develop new treatments
for patients suffering from silicosis. Silicosis, a respiratory
disease brought on by inhalation of silica particles, causes
chronic inflammation and scarring in the lungs.
- Laura J. Niedernhoffer, M.D., Ph.D., University of Pittsburgh,
School of Medicine, will seek to understand the molecular mechanisms
by which DNA damage promotes aging. The researcher will examine
some common industrial exposures to determine the impact these
chemicals have on the aging process and whether they induce DNA
- Timothy R. Nurkiewicz, Ph.D., West Virginia University, Morgantown,
will study the mechanisms by which air pollutants, such as particulate
matter, cause cardiovascular dysfunction.
- Heather B. Patisaul, Ph.D., North Carolina State University,
Raleigh, will study the mechanisms by which common endocrine
active compounds, such as bisphenol A and genistein, may impact
the endocrine system and potentially advance puberty.
- Jason R. Richardson, Ph.D., University of Medicine and Dentistry
of New Jersey, Piscataway, will explore the gene-environment
interactions that contribute to attention-deficit hyperactivity
disorder (ADHD). The researcher will evaluate pesticide exposure
as a potential risk factor for ADHD.
The new ONES awardees will be at NIEHS on January 7, 2008 to meet
NIEHS staff and make presentations about their work. The presentations
will be available at http://www.niehs.nih.gov/news/video/events/index.cfm.
Young investigators interested in competing for funding for next
year's program should visit http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/rfa-files/RFA-ES-07-005.html
The National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS),
a component of the National Institutes of Health, supports research
to understand the effects of the environment on human health. For
more information on environmental health topics, please visit our
website at http://www.niehs.nih.gov/ (http://www.niehs.nih.gov/).
The National Institutes of Health (NIH) — The Nation's
Medical Research Agency — includes 27 Institutes and
Centers and is a component of the U.S. Department of Health and
Human Services. It is the primary federal agency for conducting
and supporting basic, clinical and translational medical research,
and it investigates the causes, treatments, and cures for both
common and rare diseases. For more information about NIH and
its programs, visit www.nih.gov.