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News and Announcements

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Topic-specific News

Items specific to any of the topics in the What We Know section of this site are displayed in the left sidebar of those pages. The same is true for our ScienceServ and Special Partnerships pages.

News and announcements related to environmental impacts on human health, collected from a multitude of sources, especially Environmental Health News. For additional items or to subscribe to this feed, visit healthandenvironment.org/CHE.xml.

CHE offers this information as a service but does not endorse any of the events, articles or announcements.

American Geophysical Union seeks editors.

January 19, 2017

AGU is launching GeoHealth under Founding Editor Rita R. Colwell. We are seeking applications for two dynamic, well-organized scientists with high editorial standards and strong leadership skills to serve 4-year terms as the editors in chief (EICs) to lead this journal starting in 2017 and beyond. AGU also seeks editors of Geophysical Research Letters.

Significant association of urinary toxic metals and autism-related symptoms-a nonlinear statistical analysis with cross validation.

January 19, 2017

Average excretion levels of several toxic metals (lead, tin, thallium, antimony) were significantly higher in the ASD group. Similarly, nonlinear methods determined a significantly stronger association between the behavioral measures and toxic metal excretion. PLoS One.

New video: Your DNA, the Environment, and Epigenetics.

January 19, 2017

This video introduces the concept of epigenetics by demonstrating the outcome of an environmentally induced epigenetic change through animation. This video was produced by the Center for Epigenetics, Environment and Health and the Center for Genomics and Healthcare Equality at the University of Washington with funding provided by the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences and the National Human Genome Research Institute.

The threshold vs LNT showdown: dose rate findings exposed flaws in the LNT model part 1. The Russell-Muller debate.

January 19, 2017

This paper assesses the discovery of the dose-rate effect in radiation genetics and how it challenged fundamental tenets of the linear non-threshold (LNT) dose response model, including the assumptions that all mutational damage is cumulative and irreversible and that the dose-response is linear at low doses. Environmental Research.

New resource: Climate Change and Human Health Literature Portal.

January 19, 2017

From the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, this is a knowledge management tool for locating the most relevant scientific literature on the health implications of climate change.

New report: Children at Risk: Gaps in State Lead Screening Policies.

January 19, 2017

This report from Safer Chemicals, Healthy Families takes a detailed look at each state’s blood lead testing policies. After comparing state programs by the percentage of children tested in recent years, the report discusses why some policies have been ineffective and focuses on key reasons for higher testing rates reported in other states.

EPA water rule revived by US appeals court in NYC case.

January 19, 2017

A divided US appeals court on Wednesday revived an Environmental Protection Agency rule permitting government agencies to transfer water between different bodies, such as rivers and lakes, without needing to safeguard for pollution. Reuters.

Targeting environmental neurodevelopmental risks to protect children.

January 19, 2017

Specific information is given on how health care providers can respond to the Frank R. Lautenberg Chemical Safety for the 21st Century Act legislation and advocate for safe policies that protect children. Additional information is also provided on advice providers can give to families regarding avoidance of toxic chemicals. Pediatrics.

Truckers' poor health: an accident waiting to happen?

January 19, 2017

Truck drivers spend long hours behind the wheel and often eat less-than-healthy food at roadside stops. These behaviors can raise their risk of multiple health conditions, which boost their chances of getting into a crash, a new study suggests. HealthDay.
[See the study: Multiple conditions increase preventable crash risks among truck drivers in a cohort study]

EPA faults NC over health of minority communities near hog farms.

January 19, 2017

Two years into an investigation of the health problems affecting minority communities near large-scale hog operations, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's civil rights office has written a stern "letter of concern" to state regulators. Raleigh News & Observer, North Carolina.

Monsanto, EPA seek to keep talks about glyphosate cancer review a secret.

January 19, 2017

Monsanto Co. and officials within the Environmental Protection Agency are fighting legal efforts aimed at exploring Monsanto's influence over regulatory assessments of the key chemical in the company's Roundup herbicide, new federal court filings show. Huffington Post.

Nanoparticles detected in infant formula brands.

January 19, 2017

Nanoparticles were found in major baby formula brands including Gerber, Enfamil, and Well Beginnings, according to a report by Friends of the Earth based on a peer-reviewed study conducted by the Arizona State University School of Engineering Lab. DairyReporter.com.
[See the study: Nanoparticles in baby formula]

Urine levels of phthalate metabolites and bisphenol A in relation to main metabolic syndrome components: dyslipidemia, hypertension and type 2 diabetes. A pilot study.

January 19, 2017

Urine levels of four phthalate metabolites were significantly higher in type 2 diabetics independently on specified predictors. Phthalate levels can be in relation to beta cell dysfunction in type 2 diabetic patients but this study is not able to show if the relation is causal. Central European Journal of Public Health.

Urinary bisphenol A concentration and risk of central obesity in Chinese adults: a prospective study.

January 19, 2017

Our results indicate that higher urinary BPA concentrations might associate with greater risk of incident central obesity in Chinese adults. Journal of Diabetes.

Exposure to bisphenols and phthalates and association with oxidant stress, insulin resistance, and endothelial dysfunction in children.

January 19, 2017

Exposure to bisphenols and phthalates, including a BPA replacement, is associated with increased oxidant stress, insulin resistance and albuminuria, as well as disturbances in vascular function in healthy children. Pediatric Research.

Job opening: Ann Arbor, Michigan.

January 19, 2017

The Ecology Center seeks an innovative Science and Health Senior Organizer to direct environmental health campaigns at the Ecology Center, including the consumer product testing project, HealthyStuff.org, and the Health Leaders Fellowship program. Please apply by January 23, 2017.

First infant formula type and risk of islet autoimmunity in The Environmental Determinants of Diabetes in the Young (TEDDY) study.

January 18, 2017

These results add to the existing evidence that islet autoimmunity risk is not reduced, and may be increased, by using hydrolyzed compared with nonhydrolyzed cow's milk-based infant formula as the first formula in infants at increased genetic risk for type 1 diabetes. Diabetes Care.

Hope— and healing — go into massive redevelopment effort.

January 18, 2017

The health center and the peer health leaders are part of a $3 billion, 20-year effort to redevelop some of San Francisco's oldest public housing complexes and the neighborhoods that surround them. The effort, called HOPE SF, is about much more than rebuilding dilapidated buildings. Crosswalk Magazine.

Association of prenatal and childhood PBDE exposure with timing of puberty in boys and girls.

January 18, 2017

We found that prenatal PBDE exposure was associated with later menarche in girls but earlier pubarche in boys, suggesting opposite pubertal effects in girls and boys. Environment International.

Association between perfluoroalkyl substance exposure and asthma and allergic disease in children as modified by MMR vaccination.

January 18, 2017

PFAS exposure at age 5 was associated with increased risk of asthma among a small subgroup of MMR-unvaccinated children but not among MMR-vaccinated children. Journal of Immunotoxicology.

Meeting report: the 5th International expert symposium in Fukushima on radiation and health.

January 18, 2017

Conclusions drawn at the symposium included understanding that in contrast to Chernobyl, doses to the public from the accident in Fukushima were too low to give rise to a discernible excess risk for thyroid cancer. Environmental Health.

Early-life exposure to air pollution and greater use of academic support services in childhood: a population-based cohort study of urban children.

January 18, 2017

Children with higher exposures to BTEX compounds were more likely to receive academic support services later in childhood. Environmental Health.

EPA and FDA issue final fish consumption advice.

January 18, 2017

This advice is geared toward helping women who are pregnant or may become pregnant—as well as breastfeeding mothers and parents of young children—make informed choices when it comes to fish that are healthy and safe to eat.
[See the FDA advice: Eating Fish: What Pregnant Women and Parents Should Know]

Big businesses vow to tackle plastics problem.

January 18, 2017

At the World Economic Forum in Davos, major corporations have signed on to an initiative to better reuse and recycle plastic packaging—to reap economic benefits, and in hopes of stemming an environmental crisis. Deutsche Welle.

Environment Protection Authority to be overhauled in move to crack down on polluters.

January 18, 2017

The onus will also be on businesses to prove they were not responsible for pollution, under a sweeping overhaul of Victoria's environmental watchdog to be announced on Wednesday. Canberra Times, Victoria, Australis.

China cancels 103 coal plants, mindful of smog and wasted capacity.

January 18, 2017

China is canceling plans to build more than 100 coal-fired power plants, seeking to rein in runaway, wasteful investment in the sector while moving the country away from one of the dirtiest forms of electricity generation, the government announced in a directive made public this week. New York Times.

Common insecticides mimic melatonin, creating higher potential risk for diabetes and metabolic diseases.

January 18, 2017

The research suggests that exposure to these insecticides adversely affects melatonin receptor signaling, creating a higher risk for metabolic diseases such as diabetes. University at Buffalo News Center.
[See the study: Carbamate insecticides target human melatonin receptors]

USDA grants final approval for Monsanto/Scotts' genetically engineered grass.

January 18, 2017

Despite more than a decade of efforts and millions of dollars spent, the US Department of Agriculture, Scotts and Monsanto have failed to curb the spread of the invasive grass. Yet now the USDA has capitulated to Monsanto's and Scotts' request that federal regulators relinquish any authority over the GE grass, leaving local landowners and state of Oregon to wrestle with the problem. EcoWatch.

Running may be good for your knees.

January 18, 2017

Knees of runners showed substantially lower levels of two types of cells that can contribute to inflammation and promote arthritis. New York Times.
[See the study: Running decreases knee intra-articular cytokine and cartilage oligomeric matrix concentrations: a pilot study]

Upgraded environmental justice tool shows Barrio Logan still vulnerable to pollution.

January 18, 2017

"Many Californians live in communities that have multiple sources of pollution and it also recognizes that some communities bear higher burdens of pollution than other communities," Barnum said. The environmental assessment is used to help funnel state money into affected neighborhoods and environmental justice initiatives. San Diego KPBS, California.