2017 Pilot Project Awards

Laura Van Winkle, PhD - Department of Anatomy, Physiology and Cell Biology

May 16, 2017
Ozone and lung remodeling More than 4 in 10 US people live in areas with unhealthy levels of ozone. The San Joaquin Valley (SJV) is a hot spot of high ozone exposures. Four of the top 7 most ozone polluted cities in the US are in the SJV where ozone affects more than 1 million children. Ozone exposure during childhood alters lung growth – even healthy young adults from high ozone environments have decreased lung function – yet the mechanisms are little understood. Much research has focused on ozone exacerbation of asthma. Dr.

Jill Silverman, PhD - Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences

May 16, 2017
Behavioral and neuroimaging phenotypes following early life pesticide exposure Worldwide, organophosphate pesticides are the most commonly used class of pesticides. Epidemiological studies have linked their use to autism, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, developmental delay, and other neurodevelopmental disorders. Currently, the impacts of early-life exposure to low doses that are representative of what people and, in particular, pregnant women and children may experience, have not been well-studied. Dr.

Neil Hunter, PhD - Department of Microbiology

May 16, 2017
Effects of atrazine on the developing ovary Atrazine, a widely used weed killer is a common contaminant found in drinking water. Atrazine is a member of a family of chemicals called the xenoestrogens that mimic the hormone estrogen and thereby disrupt endocrine function. Another xenoestrogen, bisphenol-A (BPA), causes problems in female reproduction. BPA leads to a “grand-maternal effect” that increases the likelihood of developmental problems in grandchildren.

Christoph Vogel, PhD - Department of Environmental Toxicology

May 16, 2017
Noninvasive imaging of immune responses induced by environmental pollutants Exposure to air pollutants and particulate matter (PM) contribute to an increased risk for cardiovascular and pulmonary health problems resulting from chronic inflammation. Dr. Chris Vogel is using a new method for noninvasive imaging of immune responses, Positron Emission Tomography (PET) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). The goal of the project is to identify the specific sites of inflammation following exposure to particulate matter and potentially other types of environmental exposures.

Kent Pinkerton, PhD - Department of General Pediatrics

May 16, 2017
Health effects of airborne particulate matter near the Salton Sea: A Community-based exploratory project in the Imperial Valley, CA. The Salton Sea is a man-made, saline lake, located in southeastern California, in the Imperial and Coachella valleys. As a result of climate change, drought, agricultural practices, rural-urban water transfers, the Salton Sea is a polluted and shrinking lake.

Angela Haczku, MD, PhD - Department of Internal Medicine

May 16, 2017
Immune mechanisms of ozone-induced lung inflammation in non-human primates Persistent exposure to air pollution leads to changes in immune function in the respiratory system. These changes can trigger allergic asthma and increase susceptibility to respiratory infections. Exposure to high levels of ozone, a major toxic air pollutant, worsens asthma and COPD symptoms. While the exact mechanisms of ozone induced airway disease are not understood, Dr.

EHS Center Announces 2017-18 Pilot Grant Recipients

April 03, 2017

The UC Davis EHS Center Pilot Projects Program is pleased to announce recipients of the 2017-2018 pilot awards: Developmental exposure to organophosphorus pesticides to evaluate airway hyperreactivity - Principal Investigator: Ana Cristina Grodzki, PhD (Department of Molecular Biosciences) Immune mechanisms of ozone-induced lung inflammation in non-human primates - Principal Investigator: Angela Haczku, MD, PhD (Department of Internal Medicine: Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine) Effects of atrazine on the developing ov