OSU Wins Grant to Research Environmental Impact on Health

Oregon State University was awarded $5.9 million grant from the National Institutes For Environmental Health Sciences to research the impact of environmental chemical exposure on human health.  

According to OSU, The researchers at Pacific Northwest Center for Translational Environmental Health Research will provide stakeholders with scientific research. Stakeholders may include health care providers, pharmaceutical firms, regulatory agencies, and more.  

This OSU-based center is funded by a five-year grant from the National Institutes of Environmental Health Sciences. Other participating institutions include the University of Oregon, Oregon Health & Science University, and Pacific Northwest National Laboratory.  

“The center provides a missing link of sorts,” said Robyn Leigh Tanguay, director of the center and a molecular toxicologist in the College of Agricultural Sciences. “By strongly encouraging researchers to actively engage with stakeholders who need sound science to make informed decisions.”  

50 researchers in more than 20 fields form the center.   

The Chemical Exposure Core is led by Kim Anderson, an environmental chemist in the Oregon State College of Agricultural Sciences. According to OSU, “They will provide analytical chemistry support and access to passive sampling devices, such as wristbands that can be worn by people and detect more than 1,500 airborne chemicals.”   

The Zebrafish Biomedical Research Core is led by Lisa Truong, assistant research professor in the Oregon State College of Agricultural Science. They will test the toxicity of chemicals and their impact. They use Zebrafish since they are a model organism that help scientists learn about the interactions between environmental stressors and biological systems.   

Integrated Health Sciences Core is directed by Emily Ho, a nutrition scientist in the Oregon State College of Public Health and Human Sciences and also the center’s deputy director. Providing consultation and assistance for researchers who may need to work with human subjects are among this core’s roles. They also help the researchers leverage existing resources available through OSU and Oregon Health & Science University.  

Community Engagement Core is led by Diana Rohlman, an assistant research professor and environmental health researcher in the Oregon State College of Public Health and Human Sciences. This core will help “overcome the boundaries that separate scientists from each other and from stakeholders who are experts in non-science disciplines.” 

By Samantha Sied