The Mount Sinai Transdisciplinary Center announced its eighth call for Pilot Grant proposals. The Center’s mission is to increase the Environmental Health (EH) research portfolio at Mount Sinai and to bring non-EH researchers into the field through new transdisciplinary collaborations. TCEEE plans to award a total of $145,000 in pilot funding for this round. Applications can be made to either the $70,000 or $25,000 grant program. Awards will be granted based on the availability of funds. To learn more go to our 2020 Pilot Projects Program page.
Approximately 150 physicians, researchers, and allied health professionals attended the January 24, 2020 Clinical Climate Change Conference, representing more than 60 institutions across sectors. Now in its second year, the conference is convened by the Mount Sinai Institute for Exposomic Research, and this year’s partners included the American Lung Association, American Public Health Association, and the Center for Earth Ethics at Union Theological Seminary. Speakers included environmental justice advocates and leaders in the study of environmental medicine and public health, including a representative from TCEEE stakeholder advisory board (WE ACT) and TCEEE members Robert Wright, Nicholas DeFelice, Allan Just, Roberto Lucchini, Erin Thanik, Perry Sheffield, and Lauren Zajac. This CME event provided attendees with a base of up-to-date evidence to inform patient treatment and care, especially for vulnerable populations, including the elderly, children, and individuals who work outdoors. A patient education poster for health care settings was developed for the conference and distributed to attendees. Videos of key presentations are available at https://www.clinicalclimatechange.com/2020.
Trust for Public Land, New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) Carver Houses Tenant Association, and the Mount Sinai CTSA (collaboration with the Social Determinants of Health Accelerator) collaborated on the installation of a “Fitness Zone” in East Harlem to provide free outdoor fitness equipment designed to be accessible to adults of all ages and physical abilities. Members of the community came together on January 09, 2020 to celebrate the completion of the “Fitness Zone”. To complete this project our group secured $150,000 in funding. Our group applied for additional funding to train a group of Carver Houses residents as Fitness Zone ambassadors, and provide a stipend to activate the space with the assistance of more experienced Revolutionary Fitness (local fitness group) trainers who would also lead a set number of activities onsite each week/month.
On October 21, 2019, Shawna Swan, PhD, and Avi Reichenberg, PhD, organized and moderated a workshop on Sex Differences in the Developing Brain: The Role of Environmental Exposures. The workshop explored the biological variants in sex and how they are influenced by the interplay of developmental, genetic, and environmental factors.
Drs Robert Wright (P30 Director) and Douglas Walker (P30 Center Scientist) participated in the 2nd International ExposomeSymposium and Retreat of the Gunma University Initiative for Advanced Research in Japan on November 13, 2019. Dr Wright spoke on integrating exposomics into precision medicine initiatives and differences between these types of research questions and epidemiologic approaches. Dr Walker spoke on High Resolution metabolomics: Advanced blood chemistry for measuring the human exposome and recent advances his lab has made in measuring exogenous chemicals with gas chromatography coupled with high resolution mass spectrometry. Other speakers form Stockholm University, the Karolinska Institute, University of Eastern Finland, University of British Columbia, Harvard and UCSF among other participated as well. A wide range of topics ranging from methodological approaches to chemical analysis and identification to clinical applications of exposomics were covered. The symposium was followed by a day long retreat in the mountains of central Japan with discussion on the future of exposomics including how (or if) to incorporate and integrate measures of the external exposome with untargeted chemical assays. A white paper of these discussions is now planned.
Students from Brooklyn Collaborative receive certificate of training completion.
The Mount Sinai TCEEE Community Engagement Core and NYCDOHMH have been leading community science trainings that provide our community members with the training tools to increase community participation in acquiring, interpreting, and communicating air quality data. Using a free online crowd-source survey tool, we are partnering with groups to create a “My NYC Air” survey tailored to the needs of the community to collect environmental data on neighborhood air quality-related health concerns and sources of air pollution. Over the course of the pilot program, participants are trained in environmental health and justice, community science data collection, and research to action! Over 80 students and community members have been trained in community science research.
On Thursday, October 10th, The Mount Sinai TCEEE and the New York State Children’s Environmental Health Centers hosted a wonderful event in honor of the 2nd Annual Children’s Environmental Health Day! During the CEH Day ceremony, Clean and Healthy NY presented on the newly passed Child Safe Products Act. We also honored student intern, Subhana Zafar, who participated in the Children’s Environmental Health Summer Intern Program and developed environmental health educational materials for youth. Mount Sinai participated in activities led by Children’s Environmental Health Network to celebrate CEH Day.
The Mount Sinai P30, CTSA and Exposomics Institute and Brown University partnered in sponsoring the 16th Academic Pediatric Association Environmental Scholars Retreat November 1-3 in Providence Rhode Island. Trainees from 12 different universities across the country participated. The annual Environmental Health Scholars Retreat, supported by Mount Sinai since its inception gives trainees an opportunity to present research in progress in an informal setting with faculty input on the project and presentation. Drs Allan Just, Joseph Braun, Heather Burris and Robert Wright lead the planning committee each year. Many past attendees have gone on to successful research careers. Every year, national and international leaders in environmental health give talks and keynote symposium; past speakers have included the Director of NIEHS and Administrator of the EPA. Our Theme this year was Gender Issues in Academics. Each year we hold a pre-meeting workshop on Friday afternoon designed to build academic and research skills. This meeting the workshop was themed on Grant Writing: “From Specific Aims to Understanding Reviewers” led by Dr. Robert Wright of Mount Sinai School of Medicine. It was followed by small group sessions led by faculty participants. Keynote speakers this year included Dr Carol Shreffler, National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, who spoke on obtaining K awards, Dr Rosalind Wright, Mount Sinai, who spoke on Disentangling Impact of Chemical and Non-Chemical Stressors on Child Health Outcomes, and Dr Tamara James-Todd, Harvard University, spoke on her research in environmental chemical exposures and racial ethnic disparities in children. Dr Heather Burris, Penn University, led a panel discussion Navigating and Supporting Gender Equity in Academics, a Focus on the Career Development of Women. and Dr Joseph Braun, Brown University, spoke on using Directed Acyclic Graphs in Epidemiologic Research. Invited participants from Columbia University (Andrea Baccarelli), Tufts (Abby Fleisch),and Mount Sinai (Chris Gennings, Douglas Walker, Elena Colicino, Corina Lesseur, and Allan Just) led the small group sessions of the workshop and provided in depth feedback to trainees on their works in progress.
The Mount Sinai NIEHS Core Center has announced the awardees for its seventh call for Pilot Grant proposals. The Center’s mission is to increase the Environmental Health (EH) research portfolio at Mount Sinai and to bring non-EH researchers into the field through new transdisciplinary collaborations.
One $70,000 grant, one $69,608, two $50,000 grants, three $25,000 grants, and one $20,000 grant were awarded. To learn more about the funded the research projects for this year, visit our Funded Pilot Projects page.
A theory that proposes the existence of a dynamic interface between the environment and human physiology over someone’s lifetime has earned a leading Mount Sinai researcher the prestigious Outstanding Investigator Award from the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences. Manish Arora, PhD, MPH, BDS, FICD, vice chair of the department of environmental medicine and public health at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai will receive a total of eight million dollars over eight years to complete research into his theory, known as the Biodynamic Interface. Dr. Arora said, “I am grateful to the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences for this award that will help unlock the environmental underpinnings to diseases with causes and therapies that remain largely unknown.”
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