Department Blog

Health Sciences Libraries

Interplay between Environmental Exposures and Obesity

January 27th, 2015 by Mary Wood

National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS) is home to the National Toxicology Program (NTP).
The Institute of Medicine (IOM) is the health arm of the National Academy of Science.


NIEHS announces IOM Workshop on the
Interplay Between Environmental Exposures and Obesity

March 2-3, 2015
Roundtable on Environmental Health Sciences, Research, and Medicine

The workshop will explore the role of chemical exposures in the development of obesity through sessions focused on a life span view, possible biologic pathways and environmental influences, and effects of food additives and antibiotics. Speakers will make links between exposure to environmental chemicals and increased incidence of weight gain, glucose tolerance and insulin sensitivity, inflammation, and aspects of metabolic syndrome in animal models and human studies. Two panels at the end of the workshop will provide a chance to discuss opportunities for new research and possible policy actions to address exposure to chemicals associated with the development of obesity.

Check the workshop page for registration information, an updated agenda and other workshop materials.


Previous IOM Workshop
March 19, 2014
Principles and Best Practices for Sharing Data form Environmental Health Research

Animal testing and cosmetics

March 12th, 2013 by Mary Wood

On March 11, 2013, the European Commissioner in charge of Health & Consumer Policy, Tonio Borg announced that   “… Today the last deadline to phase out animal testing for cosmetic products in Europe enters into force. As of today, cosmetics tested on animals cannot be marketed any more in the EU…”

With commentary abundant the day after its announcement – including  New York Times, Huffington Post, Agence France-Presse, and Canadian Press – the following press releases offer a bit of clarity.

Questions and Answers: Animal Testing and Cosmetics Reference: MEMO/13/188 Event Date: 11/03/2013

Full EU ban on animal testing for cosmetics enters into force Europa Press Release

and related links

Directive 76/768/EEC to be replaced as of July 2013 by Regulation 1223/2009/EU

The Impact Assessment is available on European Commission, Health and Consumers website

Symp: Cumulative Impacts & Children’s Environmental Health

January 8th, 2013 by Mary Wood

Jan 16–17 California Environmental Protection Agency in Sacramento and online

Symposium:  Cumulative Impacts and Children’s Environmental Health

January 16-17, 2013
Coastal Hearing Room
1001 I St.

Select sponsoring and contributing organizations:

Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment of the California Environmental Protection Agency

Pediatric Environmental Health Specialty Unit of the University of California San Francisco

MIND Institute at the University of California Davis
Irva Hertz-Picciotto, Investigator
…..presentation 1/16: Current State of the Evidence on Environmental Exposures and Autism — Irva Hertz-Picciotto, PhD. MIND Institute, University of California Davis

WEBCAST — This symposium will be webcast by the California Environmental Protection Agency. View information about the webcast here.

Endocrine disruptors and household products: a study

March 9th, 2012 by Mary Wood

MedlinePlus Health News Thursday, March 8, 2012

Hormone-Disrupting Chemicals Found in Many Household Products: Study

Tests of more than 200 common household products found that the products contain chemicals that research suggests may be linked to asthma and hormone disruption, researchers report.

Products tested included a wide range of household products, such as soaps, lotions, detergents, cleaners, sunscreens, air fresheners, kitty litter, shaving cream, vinyl shower curtains, pillow protectors, cosmetics and perfumes.

Researchers identified 55 chemicals that studies have shown may have health consequences. Among the chemicals detected were various types of phthalates, which have been linked to reproductive abnormalities and asthma; bisphenol A (BPA), which is being phased out of many baby bottles and children’s toys because of concerns about the effect on fetuses and young children; and parabens, which some research suggests may mimic estrogen in the body and have been associated with breast cancer…

This news is based on the recently published paper:

Endocrine Disruptors and Asthma-Associated Chemicals in Consumer Products
Dodson, Nishioka, Standley, Perovich, Brody, and Rudel


Environmental Health Perspectives (EHP)

….also in 120(3):

EHP: monthly peer-reviewed journal
NIH, National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences
All EHP content is free online; the journal’s impact factor is 6.09

Wildland Fire: Air Quality and Health

June 28th, 2011 by Mary Wood

Environmental health research is inherently multidisciplinary and collaborative.  Some of the research being done here at UC Davis in the area of air quality, air pollution and pulmonary health is being done by scientists in groups and centers identified in the following links.

Firefighters working in the Monument Fire smoke; credit Northern Rockies IMT

Excellence in Pulmonary Research

…..For the past 40 years, UC Davis has been recognized for excellence in research in basic pulmonary toxicology and comparative lung biology. UC Davis investigators have a strong record of developing collaborative research initiatives through the School of Veterinary Medicine, the California National Primate Research Center, the School of Medicine, and the College of Engineering.

Air Quality Research Center

…..Facilitates research on the scientific, engineering, health, social and economic aspects of gaseous and particulate atmospheric pollutants.
…..Air pollution research and education at UC Davis focus on urban and regional smog, indoor air quality, global climate change, health and environmental effects, and intermedia transfers. Investigations span both gaseous and particulate forms of air pollution, and employ theoretical, numerical, experimental, and policy approaches. Many departments, laboratories, faculty, staff, and students are employed solving these air pollution problems in the service of industry, state and federal governments, and non-profit organizations.


Crocker Nuclear Laboratory, Air Quality Group

…..The Air Quality Group is a research group composed of professors, professional research scientists, staff research associates, and graduate and undergraduate students from the combined disciplines of Physics, Chemistry, Engineering, Atmospheric Science and Ecology. The group is supported by extramural funding and grants and/or contracts from many sources, the largest being the National Park Service (NPS), the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA).


PubMed searches: wildland firefighters ; firefighters and respiratory
Toxline search: firefighters
Biosis:  wildland fire and air quality
Pollution Abstracts: wildland fire and air quality 

SciFinder (Chemistry Database)

April 5th, 2011 by Mary Wood


Switch to the web version of SciFinder
Chemical Abstracts will discontinue the client version on June 30, 2011.

SciFinder Web requires a one-time registration and creation of a username/password. You’ll need to login with this information each time you use SciFinder Web.
If you had a SciFinder account at another institution, you will need to re-register with a new username.

One-Time Registration:

1.       Go to the UCD SciFinder website

2.       Review the instructions for creating the username/password, then click the registration link at the end of the page.
………..You must register with your “” email account.

3.       When you receive your confirmation email, click the link in the message to complete the registration.

……..Login at SciFinder

SciFinder is a research discovery tool that allows you to explore the CAS databases containing literature from many scientific disciplines including biomedical sciences, chemistry, engineering, materials science, agricultural science, and more.

Any questions or problems, contact Chemistry Librarian Cory Craig at the PSE Library.

Crude Oil Spills and Health

May 19th, 2010 by Mary Wood

The Disaster Information Management Resource Center was created by the National Library of Medicine to “provide access to quality disaster health information to the nation at all stages of preparation, response, mitigation and recovery”, accomplished by collecting, organizing and disseminating health information related to natural, accidental  or deliberate disasters.  The Oil Spills & Health site is the most recent DIMRC resource, focusing on health effects of the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.

widgetAmong other concerns, the site addresses  Occupational Hazards Related to Oil Spills and Burning Crude Oil , Seafood and Fisheries Contamination , Oil Spills and Wildlife , and Response and Recovery, as well provides access to additional  Resources from the National Library of Medicine.

Human health perspective on climate change

May 12th, 2010 by Mary Wood

The May 2010 Environmental Factor announced the release of a white paper by a federal working group on health consequences due to climate change.  Led by the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS), membership of the Interagency Working Group on Climate Change and Health included representatives from the  Environmental Protection Agency, the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, NIH Fogarty International Center, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the U.S. Department of State, the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

The intent of the report, “A Human Health Perspective on Climate Change,” is to provide a starting point for coordination of federal research to better understand climate’s impact on human health. The recommendations of the working group include research to identify the most vulnerable populations and what efforts will be most beneficial.  spotlight-group2

Targeted research priorities include


  • Asthma, respiratory allergies, and airway diseases
  • Cancer
  • Cardiovascular disease and stroke
  • Foodborne diseases and nutrition
  • Heat-related morbidity and mortality
  • Human developmental effects
  • Mental health and stress-related disorders
  • Neurological diseases and disorders
  • Waterborne diseases
  • Weather-related morbidity and mortality
  • Vectorborne and zoonotic diseases

Evidence-Based Toxicology

February 16th, 2010 by Mary Wood

The National Research Council of the National Academies’ 2007 publication, Toxicity Testing in the 21st Century: a vision and a strategy, recognizes the “revolutions in biology and biotechnology” and the “advances in toxicogenomics, bioinformatics, systems biology, epigenetics, and computational toxicology” that will substantially transform toxicity testing.  In response to scientific advances, the NRC published this title as a long-range vision for toxicity testing and a strategic plan for implementing the vision.  There is also available the Executive Summary, as well as commentary in the published literature (e.g. Reprod Toxicol. 2008 Jan;25(1):136-8).

Related, and particularly interesting, is the notion of “evidence-based toxicology”.  A search in PubMed indicates the term was first used in 2005 and continues into 2009, both before and after the NRC’s landmark report.   Arguing for a scientifically reasoned approach to toxicity testing, “EBT” clearly supports the vision of “Tox 21c” .  Discussion on EBT is readily found in the journal  Altex, with many articles freely available from the Johns Hopkins CAAT site.