*Applications may be reviewed on a rolling-basis and this posting could close before the deadline. Click here for information about the selection process.
EPA Office/Lab and Location: A research opportunity is available at the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Office of Research and Development (ORD), Center for Public Health Environmental Assessment (CPHEA), Public Health and Integrated Toxicology Division (PHITD) located in Research Triangle Park, North Carolina.
Research Project: Hazardous air pollutant exposure remains a vexing environmental problem in many parts of the country, and much is unknown about their relative toxicity and carcinogenicity, cumulative risk, and how climate change and atmospheric aging might affect health outcomes from exposure. We have shown that photochemical aging of benzene and toluene increased mutagenic potential above that of the parent compounds, but more work is needed to confirm and expand on these observations. This research project will focus on how photochemical aging (under different temperatures) of volatile hazardous air pollutants (e.g. benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene, xylene; aka BTEX, 1.3 butadiene, VOC components of wildfire smoke) affects the chemistry and resulting toxicity and carcinogenicity of these substances. This will be accomplished with ORD's mobile reaction chamber which is uniquely engineered with defined temperature control. We will develop concentration X time (CxT) paradigms and a temperature gradient of 75, 90 and 105 degrees fahrenheit to investigate the effect of exposure duration and climate on in vivo and in vitro (cell-based) health outcomes.
The results of this product will (1) provide biological plausibility for photochemical aging resulting in air pollution enhanced disease in various lifestages (2) yield information towards the quantitative risk assessment and prioritization of harmful chemicals in complex air pollution mixtures; and (3) generate systems level data to comprehensively understand the contribution of air toxics exposure in disease susceptibility and impact on resiliency.
With guidance from the mentor and other researchers, the research participant will have the opportunity to conduct research in collaboration with an interdisciplinary team of EPA scientists in the following areas:
Learning Objectives: Research learning objectives may include:
Mentor(s): The mentor for this opportunity is M. Ian Gilmour (email@example.com). If you have any questions about the research, please contact the mentor.
Anticipated Appointment Start Date: October 31, 2022. All start dates are flexible and vary depending on numerous factors. Click here for detailed information about start dates.
Appointment Length: The appointment will initially be for one year and may be renewed upon EPA recommendation and subject to availability of funding.
Level of Participation: The appointment is full-time.
Participant Stipend: The participant will receive a monthly stipend commensurate with educational level and experience. Click here for detailed information about full-time stipends.
EPA Security Clearance: Completion of a successful background investigation by the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) is required for an applicant to be on-boarded at EPA.
ORISE Information: This program, administered by ORAU through its contract with the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) to manage the Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education (ORISE), was established through an interagency agreement between DOE and EPA. Participants do not become employees of EPA, DOE or the program administrator, and there are no employment-related benefits. Proof of health insurance is required for participation in this program. Health insurance can be obtained through ORISE.
ORISE offers all ORISE EPA graduate students and Postdocs a free 5 year membership to the National Postdoctoral Association (NPA).
The successful applicant(s) will be required to comply with Environmental, Safety and Health (ES&H) requirements of the hosting facility, including but not limited to, COVID-19 requirements (e.g. facial covering, physical distancing, testing, vaccination).
Questions: Please see the FAQ section of our website. After reading, if you have additional questions about the application process please email ORISE.EPA.ORD@orau.org and include the reference code for this opportunity.
The qualified candidate should have received a bachelor's, master's, or doctoral (preferred) degree in one of the relevant fields (e.g. Atmospheric Science, Chemistry). Degree must have been received within the past five years.