Fourteen students, staff, and faculty from the University of Arizona Superfund Research Program (UA SRP) attended the 2011 National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS) SRP Annual Meeting in Lexington, KY, October 23-26. This national scientific meeting brought together scientists from SRPs across the country, as well as from NIEHS, US Environmental Protection Agency, and other organizations.
Congratulations are in order for graduate trainee Mónica Ramirez-Andreotta, who was named the 14th recipient of the Karen Wetterhahn Memorial Award! Each year the NIEHS SRP presents the award to an outstanding scholar to pay tribute to the life and scientific accomplishments of Karen E. Wetterhahn, metals expert and former director of the SRP at Dartmouth College. Ms. Ramirez-Andreotta was honored with this prestigious award for her doctoral research project, “Gardenroots.” Through greenhouse studies and the development of a citizen-science program, she is evaluating metals uptake in vegetables grown near the Iron King Mine and Humboldt Smelter Superfund site. Ms. Ramirez-Andreotta is mentored by UA SRP Associate
Director Dr. Raina Maier, and expects to graduate in 2012. As the Wetterhahn awardee, she will receive support to attend a conference of her choice, as well as an invitation to present at NIEHS. Keep up the great work, Mónica!
Another award winner from the UA SRP is graduate trainee Corin Hammond, who won first place in the non-biomedical poster category! In collaboration with UA SRP investigators Dr. Jon Chorover and Dr. Raina Maier, Ms. Hammond is investigating the use of native plants to limit community exposure to arsenic-laden dust at the Iron King Mine and Humboldt Smelter Superfund site in Dewey-Humboldt, AZ. She is specifically interested in the chemistry of how plants affect arsenic speciation and mobility in tailings. Congratulations, Corin!
UA SRP Research Translation (RT) Coordinator Dr. Sarah Wilkinson was invited to participate in a new component of the Annual Meeting by providing a research translation presentation in response to the first Scientific Session, “Systemic Impacts of Superfund Pollutants on Biological Systems.” The contributions by Dr. Wilkinson and other RT Coordinators for each Scientific Session helped bring attention to and provide perspectives on the translation of the cutting edge science being performed by all the SRPs.
Other UA presentations focused on aspects of our SRP research, RT and Community Engagement projects, and provided a great chance to network with our colleagues! We look forward to the 25th anniversary SRP meeting next year!