ARB Research Seminar

This page updated June 19, 2013

Air Quality Research Center and San Joaquin Valley Aerosol Health Effects Research Center

Photo of Anthony S. Wexler

Anthony S. Wexler

Photo of Kent Pinkerton

Kent Pinkerton

Photo of Michelle Fanucchi

Michelle Fanucchi

Photo of Dennis Wilson

Dennis Wilson

Anthony S. Wexler, Ph.D., with Kent Pinkerton, Ph.D., Michelle Fanucchi, Ph.D., and Dennis Wilson, Ph.D., of San Joaquin Valley Aerosol Health Effects Research Center

April 13, 2006
Cal EPA Headquarters, 1001 "I" Street, Sacramento, CA



In September 2005 the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency funded the San Joaquin Valley Aerosol Health Effects Research Center (SAHERC) at UC Davis. SAHERC will investigate the mechanistic links between ambient particles and the health effects that they elicit, which comprises two goals:

(1) understanding the metabolic response of tissue and organs when they are exposed to particulate pollutants, and

(2) understanding the characteristics of the particulate pollutants and their gaseous co-pollutants that elicit these responses. SAHERC is composed of five projects supported by five cores.

The projects will investigate:

  1. the metabolic response to pollutant exposure in pulmonary;
  2. cardiovascular tissues;
  3. whole animal effects of ambient particle exposure;
  4. transport of particles from the airways to other tissues; and
  5. the effects of particles and gases on lung development in juveniles.

The projects will take both top down approaches, identifying the characteristics of particles that elicit health responses, and bottom up approaches, examining the metabolic responses that these particles elicit. We will perform both field and laboratory studies. The field studies will take place in the San Joaquin Valley of California, one of the worst violators of the National Ambient Air Quality Standard for particulate matter. The laboratory studies will examine the effects of particles from specific sources or laboratory-generated particles with carefully controlled properties that model ambient ones or those from dominant sources.

The research team, composed of physiologists, toxicologists, chemists, and engineers who already collaborate on air pollution studies in the UC Davis Air Quality Research Center, the California National Primate Research Center, the Western Center for Agricultural Health and Safety and the Center for Health and the Environment, will use their complementary skills to address the center's objectives. In this talk, we will present the center's approach to elucidating the physiological link between ambient PM and health effects.

Speaker Biography

Anthony Wexler, Ph.D., is director of the Air Quality Research Center (AQRC) and the San Joaquin Valley Aerosol Health Effects Research Center (SAHERC) at UC Davis where he is a professor of Mechanical and Aeronautical Engineering, Civil and Environmental Engineering, and Land, Air and Water Resources. He is president of the American Association for Aerosol Research and on the editorial board of Atmospheric Environment.

Kent Pinkerton, Ph.D., is co-director of the SAHERC and director of the Center for Health and the Environment. He is the Program Chair for the Environmental and Occupational Health Assembly of the American Thoracic Society and serves on the editorial board of Inhalation Toxicology.

Michelle Fanucchi, Ph.D., is a project leader in the SAHERC and a research scientist in Anatomy, Physiology and Cell Biology in the UCD School of Veterinary Medicine. Dr. Fanucchi is on the Executive Council of the Inhalation Specialty Section for the Society of Toxicology and a member of the Air Quality Advisory Committee for the California Air Resources Board.

Dennis Wilson, Ph.D., is leader of two SAHERC projects and professor and chair of Pathology, Microbiology and Immunology in the UCD School of Veterinary Medicine. Dr. Wilson is a veterinary pathologist whose research interest is in cardiopulmonary disease with emphasis on the role of endothelial signaling in vascular diseases. Dr. Wilson is director of the UC Davis Environmental Pathology Training program and former chair of the Graduate Program in Comparative Pathology.

For a complete listing of the ARB Research Seminars and the related documentation
for the seminars please view the Main Seminars web page