DALLAS, Texas (FOX 44) – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced $750,000 in research grant funding to go towards the Texas A&M University.

The grant money will assist in developing and evaluating innovative methods and approaching to inform of the human health risks which might result from exposure to chemical mixtures in the environment.

The EPA says the purpose of this study is to ensure human health protection by studying the toxicity of known and unknown components. The research team will use environmental samples collected during and after disasters – where chemical re-distribution has been documented. Analyzing these samples allows for a focus on the effects of single chemicals on human health.

Chemicals in the environment are often present as mixtures in the air, water, soil, food and products in commerce. These chemical mixtures include PFAS, phthalates, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), disinfection by-products (DBPs) and other well-characterized mixtures.

The EPA says there is a need to assess the toxicity of chemical mixtures to understand how their combined effects on health and the environment differ from what is known about individual chemicals. Due to their lower cost and higher throughput, new approach methods (NAMs) and use of alternative animal models have emerged as potential approaches to advance the risk assessment of mixtures.

To help address this research need, the institutions receiving these grants will conduct research focused on the development and improvement, evaluation, and integration of predictive toxicology methods to evaluate environmental chemical mixtures.

Below are is a list of grantees and their project titles:

  • Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, Ga. – High-Throughput Lung Damage and Inflammation Assessment of Polyaromatic Hydrocarbon Mixtures
  • Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston, S.C. – Developing an Integrated Framework for Evaluating Toxicity of Real-life Chemical Mixtures
  • Purdue University, West Lafayette, Ind. – Protein Binding Affinity as the Driver for Studying PFAS Mixture Toxicity
  • The Research Foundation of CUNY, New York, N.Y. – Innovative Approach to Assess the Effect of Metal Mixtures from Infant Meconium Associated with Adverse Infant Outcomes by Identifying Methylation Loci in Mothers and Infants
  • University at Buffalo, Buffalo, N.Y. – Assessment of Neurotoxicity of Mixtures of PFAS and Other Neuroactive Organic Pollutants Through Integrated in silicoin vitro Cellular, and in vivo Models
  • Texas A&M University, College Station, Texas – A Tiered Hybrid Experimental-Computational Strategy for Rapid Risk Assessment of Complex Environmental Mixtures Using Novel Analytical and Toxicological Methods
  • University of Georgia Research Foundation, Inc., Athens, Ga. – Development of a Quantitative Adverse Outcome Pathway Network to Assess Neurodevelopmental Toxicity of PFAS Mixture in C. Elegans
  • University of Houston, Houston, Texas – Oral Toxicity Assessment of PAH Mixtures Using an in vitro 3D Cell Culture Bioreactor Mimicking the in vivo Intestinal Tract Environment
  • University of Massachusetts Boston, Boston, Mass. – Whole Animal New Approach Methodologies for Predicting Developmental Effects of Air Pollutant Mixtures
  • University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, N.C. – Wildfire Smoke Mixtures Toxicity Testing
  • Wayne State University, Detroit, Mich. – Assessment of Underlying Molecular Mechanisms Promoting Adipogenic Outcomes in Complex Mixtures