EOH Department News

Ferrar continues to work with FracTracker, driven by the prioritization of public health

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VOYAGE LA - "We fill a unique role. FracTracker Alliance studies, maps, and communicates the risks of oil and gas development to protect our planet and support the renewable energy transformation. We support groups across the United States, addressing pressing extraction-related concerns with a lens toward health effects and exposure risks on communities from oil and gas development," said Kyle Ferrar (EOH '10) about FracTracker, an organization... 

Fabisiak among public health experts that flunk report tying PA air quality improvements to gas drilling

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DESMOG BLOG - “They indicate that the Clean Air Act works,” said EOH's James Fabisiak, director of the Center for Healthy Environments and Communities, referring to the pollution reductions starting in 1990 shown in CEA’s report. “Air improved by setting stricter ambient air quality standards, continuing and enhanced enforcement, and increased control technologies to meet the mandated need to reduce pollution (auto fuel efficiency standards, cle... 

Why do people die young here? Maseru project aims to send 'citizen scientists' out to investigate

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PITTSBURGH POST-GAZETTE - The cost of being poor can include decades of life. A just-launched partnership between a Homewood-based community group and a University of Pittsburgh research team intends to explore that grim price tag, and to create a corps of "citizen scientists" who could lead the charge to close the life expectancy gap. The team includes BCHS's Noble Maseru, director of the Center for Health Equity and EOH's Jim Fabisiak, directo... 

Tyurina finds genetic engineering could open possibilities for Parkinson’s patients

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MEDICIAL LIFE SCIENCES -  A team of researchers including EOH's Yulia Tyurina unveiled the most promising strategies in applying genetic engineering. The noble method can help study the role of cellular processes in the disease progression, develop new treatment methods and drugs, and estimate their effectiveness using animal disease models.  

Praekunatham promoted to chief of Epidemiology and Public Health Emergency Response

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Hirunwut Praekunatham (EOH, '18) was recently promoted to chief of the Epidemiology and Public Health Emergency Response unit under the new Division of Occupational and Environmental Diseases in Thailand. Praekunatham's responsibilities include surveillance of environmental/occupational diseases at the national level and field work in response to emergencies or events related to chemical and radioactive substances.  

EOH alumna Lauren Chubb is looking beyond what the eye can see to keep miners safe.

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PITT MAGAZINE - Lauren Chubb, DrPH, MPH (EOH ’16, ’13) occasionally dons a hard hat to see the results of her work in the lab. Her team at the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health's Mining Program has developed software to analyze respirable dust samples in just a few minutes, rather than days. And time is of the essence:  The sooner we detect airborne disease-causing particles, the better the mines can protect their workers' he... 

Stacy finds correlation between obesity in mothers, childhood cancer risk in children

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SPECIALTY PHARMACY TIMES - A new studying has found a correlation between children born to pre-pregnancy body-mass index (BMI) and the likelihood of developing childhood cancer, even after correcting for known risk factors, such as newborn size and maternal age. "My hope is that this study can be, in a way, empowering and also motivating for weight loss," said lead author Shaina Stacy (EOH '15 '12).   

Hill, Fabisiak talk to KDKA radio about asthma and the Clairton Coke Works

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KDKA RADIO – The Clairton Coke Works is one of the biggest emitters of air pollutants in the area and there is a lot of anecdotal evidence about poor health in that area. EOH’s Jim Fabisiak and Brandy Hill (EOH ‘21) talk about their work and the importance of scientific investigation learning about asthma patients in the county, following hot spots of asthma, and preliminarily finding about the Mon Valley’s lung health.   

Hill on asthma, how residents grapple with life in the shadows of U.S. Steel's Clairton Plant

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PITTSBURGH TRIBUNE REVIEW - A study of asthma patients found those living within 10 miles of the plant also reported experiencing more frequent attacks in the weeks immediately following the fire, along with the need to increase medication use, like an inhaler, said Brandy Hill (EOH '21).   

Fabisiak comments on Clairton air quality, an ongoing concern

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PITTSBURGH TRIBUNE REVIEW - A fire at the U.S. Steel Clairton Plant knocked pollution controls offline and heightened concerns about pollution. Allegheny County ranks in the top 2% for cancer risk from about 200 potentially cancer-causing pollutants identified by the EPA, according to a 2013 Pitt Public Health report. "That risk is going to be much more elevated the closer you are to those point sources," said EOH's Jim Fabisiak.   

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