Speakers' Biographies

Workshop on Health Risk Assessment of Essential Metals
May 6 & 7, 2008
Desmarais Building, 55 Laurier Avenue East

Sam Kacew, University of Ottawa (Canada), presenting:
Introduction and Welcome

Sam Kacew received his Ph.D. in pharmacology from the University of Ottawa and now holds the position of professor of pharmacology at the University of Ottawa and associate director of toxicology at the Institute of Population Health Risk Assessment. Dr. Kacew is a fellow of the Academy of Toxicological Sciences and recipient of the Velyien E.Henderson Award from the Society of Toxicology of Canada (1983), and the Achievement Award from the Society of Toxicology (1986). Dr. Kacew is a member of the Expert Advisory Committee, Canadian Network and a member of the Committee on Toxicology of the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) of the USA. Dr. Kacew is on the grants committee of the National Institutes of Health and has served on several national and international panels. He is editor-in-chief of the Journal of Toxicology and Environmental Health, an associate editor of Toxicology and Applied Pharmacology, and he is on the editorial boards of several journals.


Beverley Hale, University of Guelph (Canada), presenting:
The Metals in the Human Environment Strategic Network (MITHE-SN): The interface of Risk Assessment, Public Policy and Advocacy

Beverley Hale received her Ph.D. in plant physiology from the University of Guelph, and is currently a professor in the Department of Land Resource Science where she pursues research into the relationships between soil metals and accumulation in plants, as well as the transfer of metals from plants to mammalian consumers. She has authored or co-authored more than 40 papers in peer reviewed journals, has supervised graduate students for successful completion of degrees, and is the leader of the Metals In The Human Environment Strategic Network (2005-2009). As well, Dr. Hale was a member of a Royal Society of Canada Expert Panel reviewing the Canada Wide Standard (CWS) for ozone. More recently, she chaired the Eco-Subgroup of CCME’s Soil Quality Guidelines Task Group for petroleum hydrocarbons in soil, and is currently reviewing recent studies of ozone phytotoxicity for consideration in the current CWS for ozone in ambient air.


Lorraine Gambling, Rowett Research Institute (United Kingdom), presenting:
Metal Specific Risk Assessments – European Perspective

Dr. Lorraine Gambling is a senior research scientist in the Maternal-Fetal Physiology Group in the Vascular Health Division at the Rowett Research Institute in Aberdeen, UK. The interaction of micronutrients and their role in fetal growth and development and impact on the offspring’s health and development is the main focus of her research. As this area of research has been highlighted as an area of importance by the European Union, Dr Gambling has and is involved in a number of European Union funded projects researching both the physiology and safety of micronutrients. Previous projects have included the ‘Evaluation of the safety and efficacy of iron supplementation in pregnant women’, FeMMES. Currently Dr Gambling is a member of the research team of two European Union founded projects; The Early Nutrition Programming Project (EARNEST) and The European Nutrigenomics Organisation (NuGo).


Randall Wentsel, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (USA), presenting:
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Metals Framework

Dr. Randall Wentsel received his Ph.D. in environmental health from Purdue University and he currently serves as the National Program Director for Land Research Program in the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Office of Research and Development (ORD).  In this position, Dr. Wentsel provides scientific direction of the program, leads in the preparation of the multi-year plans, and works with the Office of Solid Waste and Emergency Response (OSWER) on their scientific issues as well as the application of research products to address those issues.  Dr. Wentsel served for six years on the Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry (SETAC) Board of Directors.  He was also a SETAC Science Fellow serving for one year on the US Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works. 


Bonnie Ransom Stern, BR Stern Associates (USA), presenting:
Copper - Overview & Update

Dr. Bonnie Stern is an independent environmental consultant, with over 20 years experience in health sciences, risk analysis and safety evaluation.  She has a Ph.D. in evolutionary biology and reproductive endocrinology, and a Masters in Public Health in toxicology and epidemiology, both from the University of California, Berkeley.   Prior to becoming an independent consultant, Dr. Stern worked for government (Health Canada and U.S. EPA), in academia (Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory), and in private consulting. Dr. Stern is an expert in the risk/safety assessment of a wide range of chemical substances, including metals (essential and nonessential), pesticides, volatile organic compounds, endocrine-active substances, waterborne contaminants/disinfection byproducts, pharmaceuticals and personal care products.  She has served on numerous peer review panels and has been active in framing issues related to the human relevance of animal data, integration of toxicokinetic and mode-of-action data in risk/safety evaluation, life-stage differences in chemical sensitivities and nutritional needs, and other topics at the interface of science and regulatory policy. 


Scott Baker, International Copper Association (USA), presenting:
Copper Issues – Discussant

Dr. Scott Baker is the Director of International Copper Association’s Health and Environment Program. He is a toxicologist with broad technical expertise in human health and the environment, including 30 years of experience directing and participating in a wide variety of scientific evaluations involving toxicology, health risk assessment, and scientific interpretation of regulatory affairs and risk management issues. His additional responsibilities have included project management and the day-to-day management of personnel for a large consulting firm.  Dr. Baker has previously worked with EA Engineering, Science, and Technology, Inc., the RiskFocus Division of Versar Inc., the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and the U.S. National Academy of Sciences. Dr. Baker’s project experience includes scientific evaluations of the effect of chemicals on human health and the environment; assessment of the impacts of legislative initiatives, regulations, and standards on the interests of clients; environmental toxicology investigations; and risk assessment.


Joyce Donohue, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) (USA), presenting:
Copper Issues - Discussant

Joyce Donohue, Ph.D., R.D. works in the Health and Ecological Criteria Division in the Office of Science and Technology, Office of Water at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). She has a background in biochemistry and nutrition and over 20 years of experience in dealing with the toxicological properties of contaminants in drinking water.  During her career, Dr. Donohue has authored toxicological profiles of chemicals for U.S. EPA, NSF International, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) and the Department of the Army.  She has taught courses in biochemistry, nutrition, and nutrition sciences at Virginia Tech, Northern Virginia Community College and Framingham State College as a fulltime or adjunct Associate Professor.


Annette Santamaria, ENVIRON International Corporation (USA), presenting :
Manganese – Overview & Update

Dr. Annette Santamaria has a Masters degree in Public Health from the Johns Hopkins University School of Public Health and a Doctorate in Toxicology from the University of Texas School of Public Health in Houston.  Her doctoral training was in molecular toxicology and her public health training for her Masters degree focused on epidemiology and health policy. Dr. Santamaria is a Senior Manager in the Health Sciences Practice of ENVIRON International Corporation located in Houston, Texas.  Dr. Santamaria is a board-certified toxicologist and has spent more than 17 years applying scientific knowledge to practical challenges that require the integration of toxicological, epidemiological, and clinical information and perspectives.  She has extensive experience evaluating the health risks associated with exposure to a variety of industrial chemicals, consumer products, pharmaceuticals, medical devices and personal care products. 


Bruce Winder, California Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) (USA), presenting:
Manganese Issues - Discussant

Bruce Winder received his Ph.D. from Colorado State University in the Department of Entomology for the characterization of insect hormone binding proteins. He continued work on binding protein characterization in Bruce Hammock’s lab in the Department of Entomology at the University of California at Davis. Prior to joining the California Environmental Protection Agency, Dr. Winder was involved in research in reproductive toxicology in the Dept of Environmental Toxicology also at UC Davis. Dr. Winder joined the Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment in 2000 where he work as a staff toxicologist in the Air Toxicology and Epidemiology Branch assessing the risks associated with exposure to toxic air contaminants, including metals, aldehydes, environmental tobacco smoke, and VOCs.


David Dorman, North Carolina State University (USA), presenting:
Manganese Issues – Discussant

David Dorman is Associate Dean for Research and Graduate Studies and Professor of Toxicology in the College of Veterinary Medicine at North Carolina State University. He completed a combined Ph.D. and residency program in toxicology at the University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana and is a diplomate of the American Board of Veterinary Toxicology and the American Board of Toxicology and is a Fellow of the Academy of Toxicological Sciences. The primary objective of his research is to provide a refined understanding of chemically induced neurotoxicity in laboratory animals that will lead to improved assessment of potential neurotoxicity in humans. Dr. Dorman's research interests include neurotoxicology, nasal toxicology, and pharmacokinetics. He served as a member of the National Research Council Committee on Animal Models for Testing Interventions Against Aerosolized Bioterrorism Agents and the previous Committee on Emergency and Continuous Exposure Guidance Levels for Selected Submarine Contaminants. He received his D.V.M. from Colorado State University.


Craig Boreiko, International Zinc Association (Belgium), presenting:
Zinc – Overview & Update

Dr. Craig Boreiko received his doctorate in Experimental Cancer Research from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 1979.  He then joined the staff of the Chemical Industry Institute of Toxicology in North Carolina where he served as a Senior Staff Scientist for 10 years.  In 1989 he assumed the position of Manager, Environment and Health with the North Carolina-based International Lead Zinc Research Organization where he has managed research programs concerning the health and environmental impacts of metals on behalf of the lead and zinc industries.  Dr. Boreiko has served in an advisory capacity to numerous international and governmental organizations and been involved in the development or review of multiple risk assessments of zinc. 


Ian Arnold, International Aluminium Institute (United Kingdom), presenting:
Zinc Issues - Discussant

Dr. Ian Arnold completed his M. D. at Queen's University at Kingston in 1968, his Masters degree at McGill and his Diploma in Occupational Health and Safety (DOHS) at McMaster University. He also holds specialist certifications in General Surgery (CSPQ), Occupational Medicine (FCBOM and FRCPC), Safety (CRSP) and Environmental Auditing (CEA). Dr. Arnold’s work experience includes several years of general surgical practice followed by work with government and industry, including Noranda, Alcan, and currently with the International Aluminium Institute in the fields of health, safety, and environment. He is also currently working as a consultant in these areas and he is on the teaching staff of the Faculty of Medicine at McGill University. Dr. Arnold has focused on planning and reviewing research on metals and health. Dr. Arnold has been closely involved with planning and evolving research on health issues related to aluminium – from both the occupational health and the environmental health perspectives.


Peter Aggett, University of Central Lancashire (United Kingdom), presenting:
Toxicology due to excess and deficiency

Peter Aggett is the head of the Lancashire School of Health and Postgraduate Medicine and a professor of Child Health and Nutrition with the University of Central Lancashire, Preston, UK. He has previously worked at the Institute of Food Research, in Norwich, and he was an honorary research associate at the Rowett Research Institute with the University of Aberdeen. He is a past member of governmental advisory committees covering novel foods and processes; toxicity; and medical aspects of food policy. Currently Professor Aggett is Chair of the Nutrition Committee of the Royal College of Pediatrics and Child Health, and is a member of the UK Scientific Advisory Committee on Nutrition, and of its Sub-group on Maternal and Child Nutrition and has served on a variety of other UK, EU, International Program on Chemical Safety, WHO and FAO Working Groups and Task Forces on Nutritional Requirements, Food Policy and Public Health, Research and Policy Review, and on Environmental and Nutritional Safety.


Michael Dourson, Toxicology Excellence for Risk Assessment (USA), presenting:
U-shaped dose response curves

Mike Dourson directs Toxicology Excellence for Risk Assessment (TERA), a nonprofit corporation with a mission to protect public health. TERA develops partnerships among government, industry and other interested groups to address risk assessments of high visibility, such as formaldehyde, perchlorate, chloroform, and soluble nickel, and cooperative ventures such as the Voluntary Children’s Chemical Exposure Program (VCCEP), the International Toxicity Estimates for Risk (ITER) database available at the National Library of Medicine’s ToxNet, and the Alliance for Risk Assessment (ARA).  Mike Dourson has been elected to multiple officer positions in the American Board of Toxicology, the Society of Toxicology (SOT), and the Society for Risk Analysis.  He is also a media resource specialist in risk assessment for the SOT, member on the editorial board of two journals, and vice chair of the NSF International Health Advisory Board.


Daniel Krewski, McLaughlin Centre for Population Health Risk Assessment, University of Ottawa (Canada), presenting:
Combining data from different sources using categorical regression

Dr. Krewski is a full professor of Medicine and professor of Epidemiology and Community Medicine at the University of Ottawa.  He is involved in a number of activities in population health risk assessment within the Institute of Population Health where he is Scientific Director of the R. Samuel McLaughlin Centre for Population Health Risk Assessment.  Dr. Krewski has also served as Adjunct Research Professor of Statistics in the Department of Mathematics and Statistics at Carleton University since 1984. Dr. Krewski obtained his Ph.D. in statistics from Carleton University and subsequently completed an M.H.A. at the University of Ottawa.  His professional interests include epidemiology, biostatistics, risk assessment, and risk management.  Dr. Krewski is a Fellow of the American Statistical Association and the Society for Risk Analysis, and is a National Affiliate of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences.  Dr. Krewski has contributed to over 500 publications in the scientific and technical literature, and is author or editor of six books. 


Melvin Andersen, The Hamner Institutes for Health Sciences (USA), presenting:
Tissue dose based risk assessment

Dr. Melvin Andersen is Director, Computational Biology Division, at The Hamner Institutes for Health Sciences in Research Triangle Park, North Carolina. His research has focused on simulation modeling of the pharmacokinetics and biological effects of drugs and toxic chemicals and use of these models in risk assessment. He has published 290 papers, 40 book chapters, and has edited a book on PBPK modeling and risk assessment.  Over the past decade Dr. Andersen has studied the dose-dependent pharmacokinetics of manganese and considered how PBPK models for manganese can be used in health risk assessments. He is board certified in toxicology and industrial hygiene and a Fellow of the Academy of Toxicological Sciences. In June 2002, he was recognized as a ‘highly cited’ scientist by the Institute for Scientific Information.  He recently served on an NAS committee that produced a report in June 2007, “Toxicity Testing in the 21st Century: A Vision and Strategy”.



Panel Discussion: The Path Forward

Panel Chair:

Bette Meek, University of Ottawa (Canada)

Bette Meek is currently the Associate Director of Chemical Risk Assessment with the McLaughlin Institute of the University of Ottawa on interchange from Health Canada, where she managed the Existing Substances Division in the Safe Environments Programme.  Her responsibilities in this capacity related  to development and implementation of process and methodology for the assessment of the effects on human health of Existing Substances under the Canadian Environmental Protection Act, including setting  priorities for assessment from among all 23, 000 commercial chemicals used in Canada by September, 2006 (i.e., categorization). She has considerable experience in the development of methodology for and evaluation of health-related data on environmental contaminants, having also managed previously programmes within Health Canada on contaminants of drinking water and air.  She acts as an advisor to several international organizations and has authored over 150 scientific publications in this area.

Panel Members:

Leonard Levy, Cranfield University (United Kingdom)

Dr. Len Levy is professor of Environmental Health at Cranfield University. Previously he was Head of Toxicology and Risk Assessment at MRC-IEH based at the University of Leicester. Dr. Levy holds a doctorate in experimental pathology from the Institute of Cancer Research, London and has held academic positions at the University of Aston, where he developed courses in occupational toxicology and established an Industrial Toxicology Unit to research mechanisms and causes of occupational cancer and give advice to industry, trade unions and Government departments, and the University of Birmingham’s Institute of Occupational Health. Amongst current activities, he has a grant from CEFIC to undertake biomonitoring of the UK population to a range of environmental contaminants and runs the Interdepartmental Group on Health Risks from Chemicals (IGHRC). One specific post-graduate lead he is taking at Cranfield is to develop a Masters programme in Health and the Environment: a draft proposal is currently under discussion.
Donna Mergler, Université du Québec à Montréal (UQAM) (Canada)

Dr. Donna Mergler is professor emerita in the Department of Biological Sciences at the Université du Québec à Montréal (UQAM), where she was a professor from 1970 until 2006. She received her doctorate in neurophysiology from McGill University. Her major studies in occupational health examined nervous system deficits associated with manganese exposure among industrial workers and the long-term effects of exposure to organic solvents and pesticides. In the area of environmental health, she performed the first population study demonstrating nervous system changes associated with environmental exposures to manganese, which in Canada had replaced lead as a gasoline additive. Her current work includes studies of the effects of manganese exposure on children and developing developed innovative approaches to examine women’s health and participatory methodologies for studies in Canada and elsewhere with the health component within the Collaborative Mercury Research Network (COMERN) where she holds the position of team leader.


William Boyes, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (USA)

Dr. William Boyes is currently a research scientist at the Neurophysiological Toxicology Branch, National Health and Environmental Effects Research Laboratory, Office of Research and Development, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in Research Triangle Park, NC and he is the President of the International Neurotoxicology Association.  Previously, he served as the Acting Director of EPA’s Neurotoxicology Division and as Chief of the Neurophysiological Toxicology Branch.  Dr. Boyes received a PhD in Environmental Health from the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine.  His research interests include neurotoxicity, visual system toxicity, toxicity of volatile organic compounds and nanomaterials.  Dr. Boyes has published over 85 peer-reviewed manuscripts and book chapters dealing with various aspects of environmental neurotoxicity and he has authored or contributed to numerous EPA documents. He also coordinates EPA's review of documents regarding the potential health effects of gasoline oxygenates and additives, including methylcyclopentadienyl manganese tricarbonyl (MMT).


Barbara Beck, Gradient Corporation (USA)

Dr. Barbara Beck is an expert in toxicology and in health risk assessment for environmental chemicals, especially metals and air pollutants and the author of over 50 book chapters and journal articles on these topics.  Her work on metals includes design of bioavailability and biomonitoring studies, application of epidemiological and toxicological studies to development of toxicity criteria, and Monte Carlo exposure modeling.  Dr. Beck directs Gradient's toxicology and risk assessment practice.  She has performed site-specific risk assessments, developed exposure and risk assessment methodologies, risk assessment, and has presented the results to different audiences including regulatory agencies, the U.S. Congress and the public.  Before joining Gradient, Dr. Beck was Chief of Air Toxics Staff in Region I EPA and prior to that she was a Fellow in the Interdisciplinary Programs in Health at the Harvard School of Public Health.  She is at present a Lecturer in Toxicology at Harvard.


Michelle Deveau , Health Canada (Canada)

Michelle Deveau graduated from McGill University with a Bachelor of Science in Environment, specializing in Ecological Determinants of Health, and a Master of Science (Applied) in Occupational Health Science, where she performed her major project work with the Montreal public health department.  Michelle initially became interested in human health risk assessment of metals when working in the Environment and Hygiene department at Brunswick Smelter for 4 summers and as a contract literature researcher for the Cree Board of Health and Social Services of James Bay for one summer.  After graduating, she worked for several years as the corporate Industrial Hygienist for Canada Post. Michelle is presently a Senior Evaluator in the Water Quality Science Division of Health Canada, where she has been a member of a team establishing the Guidelines for Canadian Drinking Water Quality since 2007.  She has been certified by the Canadian Registration Board of Occupational Hygienists since 2007.


Ruth Danzeisen, International Copper Association (ICA) (USA)

Dr. Ruth Danzeisen’s background is in nutritional sciences and toxicology, with an undergraduate degree from the University of Hohenheim, Germany. She obtained her PhD in Human Physiology from the Department of Biomedical Sciences, University of Aberdeen, Scotland in 2001. Dr. Danzeisen has worked for 9 years at several reputable research institutions in the UK, US, Germany, and Italy. Her research experience is in metals biology, focusing on the role of copper and iron during pregnancy and fetal development, and on the role of copper enzymes in neurological disease. In October 2007, Dr. Danzeisen gained her US Board-Certification in toxicology (DABT). She joined the International Copper Association in July 2005. Within the ICA Health and Environment Program, Dr. Denzeisen is responsible for public health issues concerning copper, occupational health issues in the copper industry and regulatory matters in all regions of the world related to human health.