New York City Noise: Exploring Environmental Perceptions in a Virtual World

Our research group has been active in modeling urban noise. Above is the results from a noise model that we developed at 50 m resolution for Manhattan, New York City, NY.  PhD student, Eunice Lee did the modeling and field validation.

In our new Vx Lab — a “smart” health and wellness living laboratory (SWELL) — we are using large screen displays and interactive technologies to allow people to explore these modeled environments. This enables us to conduct “virtual exposure” studies, in which subjects can interact with distant environments, while we gauge their reactions to measured and modeled data, and relate these data to visual cues that can be gathered from street-level 3D imagery such as Google Streetview or Earthmine data.

What types of visual cues? Below are four 3D scenes from different parts of New York that illustrate the streetscape differences: Central Park, Chinatown, the Financial District, and Harlem. These scenes are viewed using 3D glasses in our lab. The environments can be navigated in 3D.









Comparisons of objective and perceived data are being explored in our Vx Lab. Moreover, laboratory studies can be extended to real world perception data sets. As an example, below is a comparison of our modeled noise levels against an indicator of perceived noise — noise complaint data which come from the New York City Public Health Department.

Release of mSpray Mobile App to Aid Malaria Elimination

mSpray is an Android application that tracks indoor residual spray programs for malaria control.

It keeps accurate accounting of:

  • GPS coordinate of the spray
  • Quantity of DDT and pyrethroid sprays
  • Refilling of spray cans

All data are stored on the phones, as well as being transferred over the Internet to a secure server, where the data can be analyzed in real time as sprays occur in the field.  The GPS coordinates enable mapping of spray programs.  And, the time stamps of the spray events allow for monitoring of the frequency of spraying in different households.






The software can be downloaded here.
Latest versionmSpray v1.51 distribution

Old versions: mSpray v1.1 distribution and Documentation.
mSpray v1.0 distribution.

To use the software:
  • Install the .apk file onto the Android phone (Android OS version 2.2 or higher is required).
  • Copy the mSprayForm folder to the SD card of the phone.
  • Cellphones must be activated and have data plans.
  • In the phone’s settings, GPS must be enabled.
  • Data are saved on the SD card in the mSpray folder.
Programmers: Edmund Seto, Crystal Dou, and Daniel Wu (2012).
Funding for mSpray is provided by NIH grant 1R01 ES020360.  The PI is Brenda Eskenazi.

Where is Edmund?

NASEO Energy Equity Committee Meeting, Dec 9, 2020, Virtual.
“Developing the Washington State Environmental Health Disparities Map Community-engaged Environmental Health Research”

IEEE WSAIM 2020, Nov 18-19, 2020, Virtual.

ISES, Sep 19-22, 2020, Virtual.
“The Relationship Between Flight Traffic, Ultrafine Particles and Noise from the Seattle Aircraft Air and Noise Study”
“Preconference Course: Air Sensors and Reference Collocation Data Analysis. Talk: Introduction to Sensors”

IEMMS, Sep 18, 2020, Virtual.
“Integrating modelling and smart sensors for environmental and human health — next steps”

IEEE International Conference on Human-Machine Systems, Sep 7-9, 2020, Virtual.
“Prediction of Personal Cardiovascular Risk using Machine Learning for Smartphone Applications”

Microsoft Research Urban Futures – Summer Workshop, July 28-30, 2020, Virtual.
“Community air quality sensing: What we’ve learned from calibration and crowdsourcing studies”

US EPA Air Pollution Monitoring for Communities, Feb 25-26, 2020, Research Triangle Park, NC.

3rd International Conference on Intelligent Human Systems Integration: Integrating People and Intelligent Systems (IHSI 2020), Feb 19-21, 2020, Modena, Italy.
“Crowdsourcing Air Quality from Human and Vehicle-based Sensors for Smart Cities”
“Identifying People Based on Machine Learning Classification of Foods Consumed in Order to Offer Tailored Healthier Food Options”

Sichuan CDC Research Meeting, Oct 24-28, 2019, Chengdu, China.

CRAES Workshop, Sep 13-17, 2019, Beijing, China.

KHHOP Workshop, Jul 2-8, 2019, Nairobi, Kenya.

NIH PRISMS Meeting, Jun 19-21, 2019, Marina del Rey, CA.

IEEE-EMBS International Conference on Biomedical and Health Informatics (BHI), May 19-22, 2019, Chicago, IL.
“Validation of a Food Image Classifier Based on the Top 50 Consumed Foods from the What We Eat in America Survey”

C3i Commercialization Bootcamp, March 28, 2019, Bethesda, MD.

Denmark Collaborative, March 25-27, 2019, Stanford, CA.

The 7th International Society for Physical Activity and Health Congress (ISPAH), October 15-17, 2018, London.
“Acceptability of smartphone-based assessments of physical activity and diet among a cohort of adolescents in Kunming, China”

Air Sensors International Conference, September 12-13, 2018, Oakland, CA.
“The Influence of Personal Behaviors on Personal Air Pollution Exposures and Acute Health Effects”

ISES/ISEE 2018, August 26-30, 2018, Ottawa, Canada.
“PRISMS: Development and Evaluation of the TEMU Personal Exposure Monitor for a Rural Children’s Asthma Intervention Study”
“Sensor Selection and Scaling Up Mobile Monitoring for High-Resolution Mapping of Community Air Quality: Design Considerations in the MOV-UP Airport Ultrafine Particle Study”
“Merging Low-Cost and Conventional Air Monitoring Methods to Investigate Biomass Burning in a Highly Impacted, Multi-Cultural Rural Setting”
“Developing a Community-Engaged Low-cost Air Monitoring Network in Seattle, Washington”
“The Mobile ObserVations of Ultrafine Particles (MOV-UP) Study; Winter 2018 Sampling”
“Potential Impacts of Multi-Modal Commuting on Personal Air and Noise Exposures and Airway Inflammation”

EPA Air Sensors 2018, June 25-27, 2018, Durham, NC.
“Deliberating Performance Targets for Air Quality Sensors”

mHealth Technology Showcase, June 4, 2018, Bethesda, MD.
“Technology Demonstration – The Bitesome App for mobile dietary assessment”

Highline Forum, March 28, 2018, Federal Way, WA.
“Update on the MOV-UP Ultrafine PM Study”

Environmental Justice Mapping Symposium, February 21, 2018, Seattle, WA.

Emerging Opportunities in Microbiomes and Environmental Health, January 24, 2018, Seattle, WA.

University of Texas, January 19, 2018, Houston, TX.
“Developing the Portable University of Washington Particle (PUWP) Monitor for Personal Environmental Exposure Studies ”

China Fieldwork, December 19-31, 2017.

Imperial CSC Meeting, December 2, 2017, Brawley, CA.

Stanford Prevention Research Center, November 29, 2017, Stanford, CA.
“Emerging Capabilities in Personal Exposure Assessment. Integrating Regulatory, Community, and Personal Air Quality Data”

Highline Forum, November 15, 2017, Tukwila, WA.
“Ultrafine Particles Near Airports”

Native-CHART Annual Meeting, November 9-10, 2017, Denver, CO.
“Bitesome – A Diet-Tracking Mobile App for the ENACTS Study”

Environmental Defense Fund, November 3, 2017, Atlanta, GA.

NIH PRISMS PI Meeting, November 2, 2017, Rockville, MD.

China CDC, October 21-26, 2017, Beijing, China.

International Society of Exposure Science, October 14-19, 2017, Durham, NC.
“NIEHS/USEPA Sensor Workshop”
“Sensor Fair – Seto Lab PUWP Air Quality Monitors”
“Emerging Capabilities in Personal Exposure Assessment : Integrating Regulatory, Community, and Personal Air Quality Data”
“Community-engaged Assessment of Exposures to Particulate Matter in Imperial, CA Using a Network of 40 Community-operated Air Quality Monitors”
“Engaging Citizens and Embracing Diversity in Air Pollution Exposure Research” (Chair)
“Addressing wood smoke with student citizen scientists in a multi-cultural rural setting”

EDGE Center Retreat, October 11, 2017, Seattle, WA.
“EABES Core Update”

Making Sense of Sensors, September 27-28, 2017, Diamond Bar, CA.
“Integrating Regulatory, Community, and Personal Air Quality Data”

Binational San Diego-Tijuana AQ Meeting, September 13, 2017, San Diego, CA.
“San Ysidro Air Study”

Adult Changes in Thought Symposium, August 21, 2017, Seattle, WA.
“Air Pollution, the Aging Brain and Alzheimer’s Disease”

China Fieldwork, July 24-30, 2017.

Bullitt Foundation Fellowship Interviews, June 26, 2017, Seattle, WA.

Meeting in San Ysidro with CARB to Launch Air Monitoring Website, June 9, 2017, San Ysidro, CA.

Meeting in Imperial with CARB to discuss Monitoring Sustainability, June 8, 2017, Brawley, CA.

American Thoracic Society Workshop: Air Pollution Monitoring for Health Research and Patient Care, May 20, 2017, Washington, DC
“Critical issues for air pollution monitoring in regions without a regulatory-quality stationary monitoring network.”

PRISMS Steering Committee Meeting, May 3, Salt Lake City, UT
“Use of the Total Exposure Monitoring Unit (TEMU) for the HAPI study.”

Health Effects Institute Annual Conference, April 30, 2017, Alexandria, VA
“Evaluation of alternative sensor-based exposure assessment methods.”

National Institutes of Environmental Health Sciences FEST, December 5-8, 2016, Durhan, NC
“Validation and Application of Portable Particulate Device in the UW Twin Registry.”
“Evaluating the performance of gas sensors over a 1-year period in Oakland, CA.”
“NextGenSS – Putting next generation sensors and scientists in practice to reduce wood smoke in a highly impacted, multicultural rural setting.”
“Validation of Environmental Sensors for Personal Monitoring and Citizen Science Studies”

US EPA Webinar, December 1, 2016, The Internet”
“San Ysidro Air Study”

National Academies of Sciences, November 16-17, 2016, Washington, DC”
New Technologies and Engagement Approaches to Enhance Research on and Communication about Individual Environmental Health Data
A Workshop of the NAS Standing Committee on Emerging Science for Environmental Health Decisions
“Emerging Capabilities in Personal Environmental Exposure Measurements: What’s Out There and What Can We Learn from Them?”

NIH NIBIB PRISMS Principal Investigators’ Meeting, October 1, 2016, Bethesda, MD
“Developing the TEMU system for PRISMS”

2016 Annual Meeting & Expo, October 29 – November 2, 2016, Denver, CO
“Community Air Monitoring Near an Oil and Gas Development in Lost Hills, CA”
“Examining the impact of changes to the food environment and the WIC food package on adiposity of low-income preschool-aged children through agent-based modeling”

APHA 2016 Annual Meeting & Expo, October 29 – November 2, 2016, Denver, CO
“Community Air Monitoring Near an Oil and Gas Development in Lost Hills, CA”
“Examining the impact of changes to the food environment and the WIC food package on adiposity of low-income preschool-aged children through agent-based modeling”

16th International Conference on Computing in Civil and Building Engineering, July 6-8, 2016, Osaka, Japan
“Comparison of Alternative Wearable Accelerometers to Analyze Construction Workers’ Ergonomic Posture in Laboratory Conditions”

NIH NIBIB PRISMS Principal Investigators’ Meeting, May 25, 2016, Marina Del Rey, CA
“Developing the TEMU system for PRISMS”

American Industrial Hygiene Conference and Expo, May 25, 2016, Baltimore, MD
“Empowering community residents with low-cost sensors to collect environmental data”

Health Effects Institute Annual Conference, May 1-3, 2016, Denver, CO
“Evaluation of Alternative Sensor-based Exposure Assessment Methods”

The NIEHS Exposure Science and the Exposome Webinar Series, April 5, 2016, The Internet
“Sensor Technologies for Improving Environmental Health: Juxtaposing the Citizen Science and Quantified Self Movements”

NIEHS Research to Action Grantee Meeting, Jan 12-13, 2016, Research Triangle Park, NC
“Use of Community-based Air Mapping and Monitoring to Reduce Air Pollution”

Semiahmoo Conference, Jan 7-8, 2016, Blaine, WA
“Field performance of low-cost ambient gas sensors: sensitivity to meteorology, comparison to reference instruments and association with traffic flow”

APHA, Oct 31-Nov 4, 2015, Chicago, IL
“Engaging impacted communities in designing a low-cost community air monitoring network”

NIH PRISMS PI Meeting, Nov 18-19, 2015, Bethesda, MD
“Sensors for Pediatric Asthma Research – The Total Exposure Monitoring Unit (TEMU)”

UW Environmental Health Seminar Series, Nov 12, 2015, Seattle, WA
“Development of the Portable University of Washington Particle (PUWP) Monitor for Personal Multi-Exposure Assessment Studies”

ISES, October 18-20, 2015, Henderson, NV.
Symposium: Activity-based assessment of personal exposure to air pollution: “Two Approaches to Assess Personal Air Pollution Exposures Using Low Cost Monitoring Technologies”
Sensor Fair:  ”Development of the Portable University of Washington Particle (PUWP) Monitor for the Washington State Twin Registry Study”
“Mobile Monitoring of Multipollutant Mixtures to Inform Low-Cost Community Air Quality Monitoring”

EPA Community Air Monitoring Training, July 9, 2015
“Imperial County Community Air Monitoring Project: A Community-Designed Air Monitoring Network”

NIH NIEHS Research to Action Study, May 28-29, 2015, Brawley, CA.
Install of community air quality monitoring network

HEI Annual Meeting, May 3-5, 2015, Philadelphia, PA.
“Low-Cost Sensor-Based Mobile Monitoring for Near Roadway Exposure Assessment”
“Reductions in Air Pollutants after the Implementation of Goods Movement Emissions reduction Policy and Strategies”

HEI Bay Area Near Roadway Sensor (BANRS) Study Site Visit, March 11-12, 2015, Berkeley, CA.

NSF Smart and Connected Health Study Meeting, March 5-6, 2015, Berkeley, CA.

Imperial County Community Air Monitoring Project, January 30, 2015, Brawley, CA.
“Imperial County Community Air Monitoring Project – Neighborhood Mapping”

EAS Healthy Choices Fair, January 26, 2015, Kirkland, WA.
“Sustainable Commuting – Balancing the Air Pollution from Cars and Buses”

Semiahmoo, January 8-9, 2015, Blaine, WA.

Fred Hutch Cancer Research Center, December 8, 2014, Seattle.
“Low cost PM2.5 air pollution measurements to meet the challenges of low and middle-income countries”

APHA, November 15-19, 2014, New Orleans.
“Development and evaluation of a food environment survey to assess the risk of adolescent overweight in three urban environments of Kunming, China”
“Applying a Novel Systems Science Approach to Understand Child Obesity Trends in Los Angeles County, 2002-2011″

UN Foundation, Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves, November 10, 2014, Beijing.

Global Health Conference. Exploring the Health Gap: Global Gender Disparities and their Impact on Girls, November 3-4, 2014, Philadelphia, PA.
“Air Pollution and Risk of Obesity among Preschool Children in the Rapidly Developing City of Kunming, China”

Northwest Occupational Health Conference, October 15, 2014, Richland, WA.
“New Technology: implications for health and safety”

ISES, October 13, 2014, Cincinnati, OH.
“Integrating Land Use Regression models with time-activity data to better estimate personal exposures”

EMBC, August 26-30, 2014, Chicago.
“The Kunming CalFit Study: Modeling Dietary Behavioral Patterns Using Smartphone Data”

ISEE, August 24-28, 2014, Seattle.
“Symposium: Field testing to validate novel tools for personal exposure monitoring in exposure assessment and epidemiological studies”
“Continuous Personal PM2.5 Exposure Measures for Preschool-aged Children in Kunming, China”
“Population Exposure Assessment Based on a Distributed Network of Low-Cost Continuous Reading PM2.5 Sensors in Xi’an, China”
“Associations between Built Environment, Air Quality, and Quality of Life in Xi’an, China”

China NSF study fieldwork, July 15-30, 2014, Kunming, China.

Kuskaya fellows in Peru, July 11, 2014, Web Conference – Peru.
“New Low-cost Particulate Matter Instruments”

UCLA NIH study ECOSYS WG2, June 30, 2014, Los Angeles.

Urban Environmental Pollution, June 12-15, 2014, Toronto.
“Associations of Objective and Perceived Neighborhood Built Environment with Health-related Quality of Life in Xi’an, China”

8th International Congress on Environmental Modelling and Software (iEMSs), June 15-19, 2014 San Diego, CA.
“Application of Quantitative Microbial Risk Assessment (QMRA) to Aid Regulatory Decision Making”
“Use of a low-cost particle monitors to calibrate traffic-related air pollutant models in urban areas”

Seattle Children’s Research Institute, May 8, 2014 Seattle, WA.
“The Kunming CalFit Study: A Mobile App for Tracking Physical Activity, Diet, and Environmental Exposures in Chinese Adolescents”

Health Effects Institute 2014 Annual Conference, May 4-6, 2014 Alexandria, VA.
“New Directions in Air Pollution Research”
“Improvements in Air Quality in California Due to Ports and Goods Movement Actions”
“Evaluation of Alternative Sensor-based Near Roadway Exposure Assessment Methods”

Kunming Medical University, March 30, 2014, Kunming, Yunnan, China
“China NSF study kick-off meeting”

University of Michigan invited talk, March 26, 2014, Ann Arbor, MI
“Development and Validation of Low Cost Air Pollution Sensors for Personal Exposure Assessment”

NIEHS Core Center for Ecogenetics and Environmental Health, February 19, 2014, Seattle, WA
“Sensor, sensor, sensor = exposure?”

Urban Health Equity: Data, Technology & Mapping. A Workshop, February 18, 2014, Berkeley, CA
“Different approaches to urban health research in San Francisco Bay Area”

UCLA NIH Systems Science Project Kick-Off Meeting, January 24, 2014, Los Angeles, CA
“Overview of Systems Science — It’s complex, yet simple”

Semiahmoo 2014, January 9-10, 2014, Blaine, WA
“BEACON — A densely distributed network of air pollution monitors for urban emissions reduction planning”

Seoul National University, November 23-25, 2013, Seoul, South Korea
“CalFit — learning from mobile phone apps for chronic disease prevention and management”
“The Quantified Self Movement — Lessons for the use of Mobile Phones in Public Health Research”

Sichuan CDC, November 19, 2013, Sichuan, China
“Opportunities for Mobile and Information Technology to Inform the Spatial Patterns of Disease”

EU PHENOTYPE Meeting, November 4-6, 2013, Utrecht, Netherlands

Wireless Health 2013, November 1-3, 2013, Baltimore, MD
Session Chair: “Motivating Movement”

Society for Social Studies of Science (4S) annual meeting, October 9 -12, 2013, San Diego, CA
“Personal and Networked Devices for Air Quality Sensing”

ISEE: Environment and Health — Bridging South, North, East and West, August 19-23, 2013, Basel, Switzerland
“mSpray: Using cell-phone technology to monitor population exposure to pesticides used for malaria control”
“Smartphone-based Assessment of Food Environment Exposures and Dietary Intake”
“A fine-scale, multi-stakeholder, multi-pollutant ambient monitoring network for understanding urban metabolism and population exposure”
“Investigating Community Exposure to Traffic-Related Particulate Matter and Noise Pollution in Beijing using Electrical Bicycle”
“Real time assessment of stress experienced during travel times in Barcelona, Spain, using novel smart phone technology”

NSF Smart and Connected Health and Wellness PI Meeting, June 4-5, 2013, Arlington, VA

A&WMA 2013, June 25-28, 2013, Chicago, IL
“A Near-Roadway Risk Screening Tool for Urban Planners”

Neglected Tropical Disease (NTD) mapping:
supporting country programme and future research directions, May 28, 2013, London

“GPS data loggers and smartphone technologies for NTD research”

“Panel: Data Assembly and Analysis”

American Telehealth Association, May 7, 2013, Austin, TX
“mHealth Application in Pediatrics – Development, Practice and Impact”

HEI Annual Conference 2013, April 14-16, 2013, San Francisco, CA
“Improvements in Air Quality and Health Outcomes among California Medicaid Enrollees Due to Goods Movement Actions, Phase I: Assessing Air Quality Changes”

University of Washington Job Talk, April 8-9, 2013, Seattle, WA

CalFit Diet Assessment Study, March-April, 2013, Shanghai

EPA Air Sensors 2013, March 19-20, 2013, Research Triangle Park, NC

Society of Behavioral Medicine (SBM), March 20-23, 2013, San Francisco, CA
“NIH OBSSR Supported Workshop — mHealth Brief Training Institute”
“CalFit: using smartphone videos to assess diets in China”

Center for Weight and Health Research Brown Bag, March 18, 2013, Berkeley, CA 
“Smartphone-based Diet and Food Environment Exposure Assessment”

CREAL, March 4-6, 2013, Barcelona, Spain
“CalFit Ecological Momentary Assessment Workshop for EU PHENOTYPE Study”

EcoHackSF, February 22-23, 2013, San Francisco, CA
Jill and David’s ignite talk:

Streams, Gardens, and Clouds, January 24, 2013, Berkeley, CA
“Visualizing Public Health and Sustainable Communities”

International Workshop on GPS and GIS Integration: Extending Research Frontiers, December 16, 2012, Hong Kong
“Smartphones for Integrated GPS/GIS Exposure Assessment”

APHA, October 30, 2012, San Francisco, CA
“Evaluation of Health Impact Assessment Training and Capacity-building in the United States”
“Spatial Validation of Food Environment in Berkeley Using 3D Street View Data”

Wireless Health 2012 October 22-25, 2012, San Diego, CA

13th International Symposium on Schistosomiasis, September 16-19, 2012, Belo Horizonte, Brazil
“Mathematical models for informing schistosomiasis elimination planning in the face of emerging praziquantel resistance”

HIA 2012 August 29-31, 2012, Quebec
“HIA Methods Used in United States Practice Since 2009″
“Evaluation of HIA Training and Capacity-Building in the United States”

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mSpray app to combat malaria, facilitate pesticide exposure research in South Africa

A new project: I’m working with Dr. Brenda Eskenazi, the recent John Goldsmith Award Winner for Outstanding Contributions to Environmental Epidemiology from the International Society of Environmental Epidemiology (ISEE) to develop mSpray — a new smartphone app that will be used in South Africa to track indoor residual spraying done for malaria control. While insecticide spraying is an effective tool to combat malaria transmission, household residents exposed to the pesticides (DDT and/or pyrethroids) may suffer from adverse health effects. Brenda is currently conducting a birth cohort study in Limpopo, South Africa to assess these effects.

I am co-designing the mSpray application with input from the local malaria control authorities. The application will be open source and available for developers in Africa and internationally to continue development.

Latest news: we have just received word that Zinto Marketing (a subsidiary of the Zinto Activation Group in South Africa will sponsor cell phones for the project.

Launch of (beta test)

We’ve lauched a new website called allows users to create maps of the food environment for communities of concern.  We hope that such a tool can greatly enable food environment policy research, including those aimed at solving food access inequalities.

The site has a quite a few features:

  • Mapping (obviously)
  • Downloading data (really powerful — access to real data for real research)
  • Personalization (select search region, types of food of importance)

Thanks Crystal Dou and Daniel Wu for putting this site together.  It’s not perfect yet, but we’ve started a beta test to start getting feedback on the site.  Please try it out and let us know what you think. was created largely from donations. If you’d like to support further development of the site, please click on the “Support the project” button on the site.

Validation of CalFit

CalFit is a smartphone application that tracks a user’s time-location and physical activity patterns developed by our group.  It showcases the latest research in energy expenditure and activity tracking algorithms developed through collaboration between UC Berkeley Engineering and the School of Public Health, and validated at UC Davis Medical Center.

We have completed validation of CalFit against both the Actigraph and the COSMED in the laboratory with seed funding from CITRIS.

We now have a grant from the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIH/NIEHS) to validate CalFit in two field epidemiological studies: the Healthy Places Study based at USC in Southern California, and the TAPAS study based at CREAL in Barcelona, Spain.


Public Health Assisting Smart Technologies (PHAST)

The mission of the PHAST is the creation of smart devices that promote awareness and understanding of personal activity spaces and how they affect health. Through the creation of wearable devices that integrate data-logging global positioning system receivers with personal and environmental sensors, our aim is to create integrated devices that can provide a wealth of individual-level data that can address major public health problems, such as the relationship between physical exercise and obesity, social interaction and the spread of infectious diseases, assessment of small-scale variations in exposures to airborne pollution, and environmental injustices. These devices allow for the spatial and temporal mapping of individual activity spaces and the identification of health risks associated with these spaces. Such information has the potential to improve Public Health by informing and promoting alternative environmental policies, community perspectives, and individual behaviors.

CalFit — Smartphone-based Physical Activity Tracking







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Environmental Exposures and Incident Hypertension and Type 2 Diabetes

The National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIH/NIEHS) has funded a 5-year study of the association between air pollution and noise exposures and incident hypertension and Type 2 diabetes. Based on the Black Women’s Health Study cohort, this study will be first large-scale nationwide assessment of environmental exposures and incidence of hypertension and diabetes focusing on African American women. Drs. Seto and Jerrett at UC Berkeley are responsible for the exposure assessment for this landmark study, which will include modeling of airborne particulate, nitrogen dioxide dispersion, and community noise.

The study P.I. is Patricia Coogan, Boston University.

More about this study and the Black Women’s Health Study cohort can be found on the Boston U website:

To learn more about the air pollution dispersion and noise models developed by my group, contact me.

Schistosomiasis Disease Elimination Challenges

Despite major progress towards the control of schistosomiasis, there are numerous challenges remaining on the road to disease elimination.

My colleagues and I have recently written about some of these challenges that we’re facing in Sichuan, China, where schistosomiasis is now well-controlled, and there are ongoing efforts to eliminate transmission in this province.

Some of these challenges include:

  • Diagnostics that are sensitive to low-infection
  • Identifying and controlling reservoirs for ongoing transmission
  • Monitoring and exploring the impact of drug resistance

Connectivity Sustains Transmission

David Gurarie and I have written about our findings modeling the impact of connectivity between environmental reservoirs — how places with infection are inter-connected via social interaction and hydrology can sustain transmission in a region.

Drug Resistance

Working with the Sichuan Institutes of Parasitic Diseases in Sichuan, my group has recently quantified in vitro and in vivo effects of drug resistance in a region that has had considerable control in recent years. We tried to be fairly comprehensive in our study, also quantifying the villagers’ knowledge and attitudes towards treatment.