NIOSH Researchers in Cincinnati, Morgantown Receive Award for Ooutstanding Scientific Publications
Contact: Fred Blosser (202) 260-8519
October 8, 1997
Four publications by scientists at the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) were honored Oct. 8, 1997, as recipients of NIOSH's annual Alice Hamilton Award for Excellence in Occupational Safety and Health, with two others receiving honorable mention. The 1997 awards were presented at a ceremony held at NIOSH's Alice Hamilton Laboratory in Cincinnati, Ohio, and simultaneously teleconferenced to other NIOSH locations in Cincinnati, Atlanta, Ga., Morgantown, W.Va., Pittsburgh, Pa., Spokane, Wash., and Washington, D.C.
The presentation honored outstanding NIOSH research documents and scientific journal articles published in 1996. The Hamilton Award recognizes distinguished work in four categories on the basis of exceptional scientific merit and contribution to occupational safety and health. Categories are engineering and physical sciences, human studies, educational materials, and biological science.
This year's selections were made by review panels of researchers both from within and outside NIOSH. The award is named for Alice Hamilton, a pioneering occupational physician and researcher.
Barry Levy, M.D., M.P.H., president of the American Public Health Association, presented the keynote speech at the awards ceremony. "The Hamilton Award demonstrates that NIOSH is home to vigorous, forward-looking science that is more critical than ever before to protecting the health and safety of workers," said NIOSH Director Linda Rosenstock, M.D., M.P.H., who presented the award.
The Hamilton Award winners from Cincinnati are:
- M. Eileen Birch (with Robert A. Cary of Sunset Laboratory, Forest Grove, Ore.), category of engineering and physical sciences, for a paper on the use of elemental carbon as a marker for diesel exhaust particulates. This research is likely to have a significant impact on identifying and controlling health risks from diesel exhausts.
- Elizabeth M. Ward, Richard Hornung, James Morris, Robert Rinsky, Deanna Wild, William Halperin, and William Guthrie, category of human studies, for a paper that examines the risk of low white-cell or red-cell counts in blood at given levels of exposure to benzene, based on medical data collected over a 35-year period at a rubber hydrochloride plant. These findings provide important additional data to support the need for medical monitoring among workers exposed to benzene at relatively low levels.
The Hamilton Award winners from Morgantown are:
- Paul Hewitt, category of educational materials, for a paper that discusses occupational exposure limits in regard to exposures that pose a risk of disease over the long term, such as cancer, reproductive effects, or neurological disorders. The technical discussion in the paper will have continuing value for occupational health professionals on the rationale for setting and interpreting exposure limits.
- Petia P. Simeonova and Michael I. Luster, category of biological science, for a paper that examines subtle changes in the body at the molecular level that may signal very early stages of asbestosis. This information might be used to design health interventions for mitigating or preventing the asbestosis disease process in exposed populations.
In Cincinnati, honorable mentions also went to:
- James D. McGlothlin, category of engineering and physical sciences, for a NIOSH publication on ergonomic measures in the soft-drink delivery industry. The publication has led to many control measures for reducing the incidence of musculoskeletal disorders in the industry.
- Mary A. Butler, Kenneth L. Cheever, and Russell E. Savage Jr. (with Santhanam Swaminathan, Susan M. Fredrickson, James F. Hatcher, and Catherine A. Reznikoff of the University of Wisconsin), category of biological science, for a paper on use of an advanced laboratory technique for assessing the hazards of suspected human bladder carcinogens. The studies provide support for the classification of the chemical 4,4'-methylenebis (2-chloroaniline) (MOCA) as a human carcinogen, and for the usefulness of the state-of-the-art analytical technique for testing suspected carcinogens.
NIOSH is the only federal agency mandated to conduct occupational safety and health research and training. Headquartered in Washington, D.C. It is part of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
For further information on the Alice Hamilton Award and NIOSH research, contact the toll-free NIOSH information number, 1-800-35-NIOSH (1-800-356-4674), or visit the NIOSH Web site at http://www.cdc.gov/niosh/homepage.html.
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