Dr. Bernhard Hennig was one of the invited speakers of a symposium organized by National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS) Superfund Hazardous Substance Basic Research and Training Program (SRP) and held during the annual Society of Toxicology Meeting in Baltimore.  The symposium was entitled “NIEHS Superfund Research Program: A History of Cutting-Edge Science and Innovative Technologies” and chaired by Danielle Carlin, NIEHS, Research Triangle Park, NC; and Rebecca Fry, University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, NC.  Hennig’s talk was entitled “Emerging Prevention Paradigms with Nutrition: The Impact of the NIEHS SRP”.  The symposium also featured leaders from the Program:

  • NIEHS Superfund Research Program: A History of Cutting-Edge Science and Innovative Technologies.
    William Suk, NIEHS, Research Triangle Park, NC.
  • Systems Toxicology Approaches to Understand the Harms of Toxic Metals in Vulnerable Populations.
    Rebecca Fry, University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, NC.
  • Integrating New Research Models to Understand and Mitigate the Adverse Effects of PAH Mixtures.
    Robert Tanguay, Oregon State University, Corvallis, OR.
  • Novel Methods for Detection and Prevention of Emerging Superfund Contaminants.
    Stephania Cormier, University of Tennessee Health Sciences Center, Memphis, TN.

The NIEHS SRP is a critical player in the national effort to protect human health and the environment from hazardous substances. The Program funds a wide range of university-based and small business research to address public health concerns related to hazardous substances in the environment. SRP takes a problem solving, solution-oriented approach that combines laboratory, field, and population-based studies to improve our understanding of and minimize the health effects associated with exposures to contaminants. Created by the same legislative framework that created the US Environmental Protections Agency’s (US EPA) Superfund hazardous waste remediation program and the Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR), the SRP’s role is to support science-based decision making by elucidating the basic principles underlying hazardous substance toxicity and risk. SRP-funded researchers are focusing on the health effects of individual contaminants, as well as complex chemical mixtures, determining relevant chemical exposures, identifying developmental windows of susceptibility, analyzing patterns in toxicologic data to assess risks to human health presented by hazardous substances, and development of tools to facilitate assessment of exposure and mitigation of toxicity. The Program’s central goal is to understand and break the link between chemical exposure and disease. The session highlighted the scientific findings from the SRP’s extramural community over the past 30 years, as well as ongoing state-of-the-art science, which includes a focus on various chemical classes (e.g. metals, PCBs, PAHs), mixtures, and emerging contaminants. Panelists also discussed future scientific areas of interest to the Program and how the Program will continue to support the understanding of hazardous substance toxicity and risk to exposure to hazardous substances and relevant mixtures. The symposium concluded with a Panel Discussion/Q&A. Additional information can be found online via http://www.toxicology.org/events/am/AM2017/program.asp#scisessions.