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Environmental Health Program

The Environmental Health Program (Contaminant Biology and Toxic Substances Hydrology) supports integrated natural science expertise and capabilities across the USGS related to environmental contaminants and pathogens. This one-health approach recognizes the interdependence of human and animal health and the health of ecosystems that they share. 

News

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USGS Science Well Represented at the Upcoming SETAC 43rd Annual North American Meeting

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Friday's Findings - September 16, 2022

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Friday's Findings - July 29, 2022

Publications

Microbial community response to a bioaugmentation test to degrade trichloroethylene in a fractured rock aquifer, Trenton, N.J

Bioaugmentation is a promising strategy for enhancing trichloroethylene (TCE) degradation in fractured rock. However, slow or incomplete biodegradation can lead to stalling at degradation byproducts such as 1,2-dichloroethene (cis-DCE) and vinyl chloride (VC). Over the course of 7 years, we examined the response of groundwater microbial populations in a bioaugmentation test where an emulsified veg

Ecological consequences of neonicotinoid mixtures in streams

Neonicotinoid mixtures are common in streams worldwide, but corresponding ecological responses are poorly understood. We combined experimental and observational studies to narrow this knowledge gap. The mesocosm experiment determined that concentrations of the neonicotinoids imidacloprid and clothianidin (range of exposures, 0 to 11.9 μg/liter) above the hazard concentration for 5% of species (0.0

Microbially induced anaerobic oxidation of magnetite to maghemite in a hydrocarbon-contaminated aquifer

Iron mineral transformations occurring in hydrocarbon-contaminated sites are linked to the biodegradation of the hydrocarbons. At a hydrocarbon-contaminated site near Bemidji, Minnesota, USA, measurements of magnetic susceptibility (MS) are useful for monitoring the natural attenuation of hydrocarbons related to iron cycling. However, a transient MS, previously observed at the site, remains poorly

Science

Gratitude for a Dedicated Civil Servant who Tirelessly Promoted Environmental Health Science

Mike Focazio, the Environmental Health Program Coordinator, editor of the GeoHEALTH-USGS Newsletter, and research scientist retired from the USGS at the end of November. Throughout his 33-year career, Mike’s principle-based leadership focusing on transparency, accountability, and scientific integrity has carried environmental health science forward at USGS and for the Nation.
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Gratitude for a Dedicated Civil Servant who Tirelessly Promoted Environmental Health Science

Mike Focazio, the Environmental Health Program Coordinator, editor of the GeoHEALTH-USGS Newsletter, and research scientist retired from the USGS at the end of November. Throughout his 33-year career, Mike’s principle-based leadership focusing on transparency, accountability, and scientific integrity has carried environmental health science forward at USGS and for the Nation.
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Wild Prairie Grouse Diet and Microbiomes Vary Between Cropland and Grassland Habitats

Wild prairie grouse residing in croplands had altered diets and gut microbiome imbalances characterized by a greater abundance of pathogenic bacteria and antibiotic-resistance genes in comparison to those residing in grasslands. Similar gut microbiome imbalances are rarely associated with lethal outcomes, but rather linked to sublethal health effects including growth, development, behavior, immune...
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Wild Prairie Grouse Diet and Microbiomes Vary Between Cropland and Grassland Habitats

Wild prairie grouse residing in croplands had altered diets and gut microbiome imbalances characterized by a greater abundance of pathogenic bacteria and antibiotic-resistance genes in comparison to those residing in grasslands. Similar gut microbiome imbalances are rarely associated with lethal outcomes, but rather linked to sublethal health effects including growth, development, behavior, immune...
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Review of Wildlife Health Outcomes and Potentially Toxic Algal Blooms in the Chesapeake Bay

Scientists provide resources that review algal toxin data, explore links between avian mortality and toxin exposure, and identify future research needs to predict algal toxin health hazards and risks for birds and other wildlife in the Chesapeake Bay.
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Review of Wildlife Health Outcomes and Potentially Toxic Algal Blooms in the Chesapeake Bay

Scientists provide resources that review algal toxin data, explore links between avian mortality and toxin exposure, and identify future research needs to predict algal toxin health hazards and risks for birds and other wildlife in the Chesapeake Bay.
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