Special Issue 2014
As I write this message, the temperature is hovering in the single digits and there is a light snow falling on top of the foot of snow currently covering the ground. So, it goes without saying that I am really looking forward to the Annual Meeting in Phoenix!!! However, I am looking forward to the meeting not just because I anticipate pleasant sunny weather, but also because I know the scientific program will be outstanding. All abstracts, including those submitted during the second abstract submission period, are now finalized, and the program includes a total of 2,892 accepted submissions (3rd highest in our meeting history).
As this is the last of my President’s messages, I am going to focus on the outcome of the review of the Society’s communication strategy that was a major emphasis of SOT Council over the past year. One of the priorities of the Society’s strategic plan concerns the recognition and communication of the value of toxicology. However, over the past 10 years, our efforts in this area have generally been reactionary, not always well focused, and often times ineffective. Please note that my comments are not intended to be critical of any particular group. Rather, as a professional scientific organization, we understood that such efforts should be a priority, but we just didn’t do a very good job of recognizing our own strengths and weaknesses, nor did we develop clear objectives to focus our efforts.
During this year, SOT Council worked closely with the Communications Committee to critically evaluate our efforts in this important area. We reconfirmed that our overarching goal is to establish SOT and the science of toxicology as a credible, objective, and valuable resource to effectively engage in scientific communication. As of today, we are close to finalizing our plans for how to best move forward to advance our overall communication strategy and efforts. We will focus on those activities that we believe will most effectively advance our ability to communicate the relevance and importance of toxicology. The new initiatives are as follows:
The initiatives listed above may seem obvious, perhaps even trite. I can assure you that our conclusions were reached after considerable discussion, critical evaluation, and careful analysis of general costs relative to expected benefits. I hope that as these plans move forward, this year of work will position the Society for sustained progress and growth in our collective abilities to effectively promote the recognition of toxicology. As we advance these initiatives, I want to take this opportunity to acknowledge the collective work of the members of the Communications Committee over the past several years. Their dedication and work to the recognition of toxicology have helped to set the stage for what is to come.
Before looking forward to the Annual Meeting in Phoenix, I want to acknowledge the very successful Contemporary Concepts in Toxicology (CCT) meeting that was held in mid-January. The meeting entitled “FutureTox II: In Vitro Data and In Silico Models for Predictive Toxicology” was held in North Carolina, but included opportunities for “offsite” participation through web connections, thereby engaging a large group of scientists. The smaller, focused CCT meetings are not only educational and networking opportunities, but also provide another venue by which we can promote the recognition of toxicology more broadly among our scientific colleagues.
This FutureTox II CCT was developed by the Scientific Liaison Coalition (SLC), a collaborative group of 16 societies including SOT. The central mission of the SLC is to improve the ability of societies to partner with other domestic and international organizations with the goal of increasing the impact of the science of toxicology to improve public health. The development and planning of the FutureTox II CCT meeting demonstrates the mission of the SLC in action, and the SLC should be proud of its contributions to the future of toxicology via FutureTox II.
And finally, I return to the highlight of our professional calendar, the Annual Meeting. I am looking forward to greeting as many members as possible in Phoenix. I know that everyone has a busy schedule during the week, and with the scope of the meeting content, there is the never-ending struggle with trying to be in two places at one time. I hope that as you are walking (or running) to the next session or poster, you might also find the time to stop momentarily to appreciate the scope and quality of our science, the value of the professional friendships that have developed over your time as members, and the collective efforts of all of the Society committees and support staff that make the meeting so successful.
It has been my honor and pleasure to lead the SOT during the past year. I also want to acknowledge all the members of SOT Council who have dedicated considerable time to work with me to advance the goals of the Society during this year.
See you in Phoenix.
Lois D. Lehman-McKeeman, PhD, ATS
SOT 2014–2015 Council and Committee Members Elected
The Society is pleased to announce the election of the following 2014–2015 Council and Committee Members:
John B. Morris
George P. Daston
Ofelia A. Olivero
Rory B. Conolly
Michael D. Aleo
Rebecca A. Clewell
B. Paige Lawrence
Hanan N. Ghantous
The 2014–2015 Committee and Task Force Members List will be available May 1 on the SOT website.
SOT Is Matching Dollar-for-Dollar Contributions to All Established Endowment Funds
The Society of Toxicology (SOT) is matching one to one dollar contributions to all established funds. The one to one match is effective for contributions made between July 1, 2013 until June 30, 2016, or until the $400,000 in matching funds has been expended.
The SOT Endowment Fund has a mission of assisting in advancing the science of toxicology by providing financial support for the Society’s programs. Contributors to the SOT Endowment Fund are helping to build for the future of toxicology through long-term financial support, which also generates critical resources that enable the Society to fulfill its mission, now and in years to come.
Your generous contributions to the SOT Endowment Fund help support the following:
The SOT bears the administrative expenses of the Endowment Fund, assuring that every dollar contributed goes directly to support programs.
Consider making a contribution today and invest in the future of Toxicology.
New SOT Members in 2013
In 2013, the Society of Toxicology (SOT) welcomed 829 new members, including 295 Full, 121 Associate, 157 Postdoctoral, and 256 Student members. New members are part of our network of more than 7,400 members from 61 different countries. Members from academic institutions, industry, government, and other scientific organizations are committed to SOT’s vision of “creating a safer and healthier world by advancing the science of toxicology.” For a full listing of new members, please visit the SOT new members page.
Sharing SOT Member Research
Do you have newly published research that you’d like shared with your fellow SOT members, as well as laypeople interested in science, science reporters, and government agencies?
If the answer is “yes,” SOT can help!
Over the last few months, SOT has been working to ramp up our web presence through a new Twitter account for the Society, @SOToxicology; daily posts to SOT Facebook page; and more frequent updates to the SOT website. All of these communications channels are focused on one thing: promoting the science and toxicology. And, we figure that there is no better way to do this than sharing the new research and findings of our members.
For instance, in the last week on Facebook and Twitter, we featured the February issue of Toxicological Sciences; Drs. Andre Nel and Tian Xia’s ACS Nano paper on rare earth oxide nanoparticles and their effect when inhaled; and an article in Neurology, co-authored by Dr. Arthur Fitzmaurice, which unveiled research into a connection between certain pesticide exposure and Parkison’s.
Will your work be highlighted next? We hope so! If you have research you’d like shared with a wider audience, please send an email to Michelle Werts.
Debunking a Popular News Story
Late last month, Consumer Reports released a study on the levels of a caramel coloring agent known as 4-methylimidazole (4-MEI) in many popular, carbonated beverages. The use of phrases such as “potential carcinogen” and “health risk” to describe the chemical and its levels caused the report to receive widespread interest from the media, including from national distributors Associated Press and National Public Radio. Amidst all of the coverage, though, was a lack of examination of the toxicological studies into 4-MEI—the Consumer Reports analysis was taken at face value by many media sources.
SOT 2013–2014 President Lois D. Lehman-McKeeman and SOT 2013–2014 Vice President Norbert E. Kaminski determined that this was a prime opportunity for the Society of Toxicology to help educate the media and public on what role toxicologists serve and how to examine toxicological science when it appears in studies like the one by Consumer Reports. With the assistance of the rest of the SOT Presidential Chain, a press release on the toxicology of 4-MEI was developed. These individuals include the 2013–2014 SOT Vice President and SOT Past President.
The press release outlines the key findings of a National Toxicology Program study on MEI-4 and features quotes by Dr. Lehman-McKeeman explaining their significance. The release was distributed last week by a media service, known as Newswise, to its list of reporters and media contacts; was posted to the SOT website; and was featured on SOT’s Twitter and Facebook pages.
Moving forward, SOT leadership hopes to continue to address popular media topics from a toxicological perspective in a timely manner, and all SOT members are encouraged to alert Michelle Werts at SOT Headquarters if you see a need or opportunity for such action.
Time for an SOT Website Face Lift
Change is coming to the SOT website, and we’re looking for a few good men and women to help direct that change.
SOT Council is forming a new Website Redesign Task Force that will be charged with turning a critical eye to the SOT website and helping determine what features should stay, go, and be added to best serve the strategic goals of the Society. This task force will be formed in just a few short weeks, and its term is anticipated to last through summer 2015.
It’s important to note that members of this Task Force are not expected to be technical web wizards who are responsible for implementing the website redesign—SOT Headquarters has people for that—but instead, the members of this task force should be savvy individuals who know what they like and don’t like on scientific websites. Ultimately, this task force is providing the strategic vision of the science and resources an SOT website should be providing to its members and its other audiences.
Does this sound like something you’d be good at or like to do? If so, send a note to Communications Manager Michelle Werts expressing your interest in joining the Website Redesign Task Force.
FutureTox II CCT Draws Participants from Across the US and Around the Globe
The FutureTox II: In Vitro Data and In Silico Models for Predictive Toxicology Contemporary Concepts in Toxicology (CCT) conference drew 291 presenters, attendees, and exhibitors from around the globe (e.g., Europe, Asia, and South American) on January 16–17, 2014, at the William and Ida Friday Center for Continuing Education, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, North Carolina. In addition, nine sites participated in a webcasting pilot program to expand the reach of these CCT meetings. The conference addressed the pathway-based strategy by bringing together basic research into a congress that integrated newer in vitro methodologies and computational (in silico) modeling approaches with advances in systems biology.
As SOT 2013–2014 President Lois D. Lehman-McKeeman noted in her Welcoming Statement: “The FutureTox II Organizing Committee has worked diligently to develop this international forum that brings together distinguished experts and attendees from academia, industry, and government to discuss the integration of newer in vitro methodologies and computational modeling approaches with advances in systems biology. The overarching goal of this conference is to address the strengths and weaknesses of these novel approaches and to clarify the usefulness and validity of these new technologies. Such critical discussion will also help to ascertain their overall utility in both the regulatory and regulated scientific communities.”
Participants had ample opportunity to network with experts in this fast changing growth area, particularly at the Poster Reception held on the first day of the conference at which 60 posters were displayed, as well as during the breakout groups held on the second day. Breakout groups addressed four key areas: Regulatory Toxicology, Liver Disease and Hepatotoxicity, Developmental/ Reproductive Toxicity, and Cancer. There is global interest in “Adverse Outcome Pathways” (AOPs) as a conceptual framework for mode-of-action approaches in these four areas. Focusing the CCT on scientific issues where new methodologies and advances can move us beyond reliance on animal models will benefit all researchers and regulators as a way of identifying key questions that need research.
The FutureTox II CCT Organizing Committee developed the scientific program for this meeting and included the following members: Thomas B. Knudsen, Co-Chair, US Environmental Protection Agency (US EPA), Research Triangle Park, North Carolina; Douglas A. Keller, Co-Chair, Sanofi US, Bridgewater, New Jersey; Edward W. Carney, Dow Chemical Company, Midland, Michigan; Nancy G. Doerrer, ILSI Health and Environmental Sciences Institute, Washington, DC; David L. Eaton, University of Washington, Seattle, Washington; Suzanne Compton Fitzpatrick, US Food and Drug Administration (US FDA), Silver Spring, Maryland; Kenneth L. Hastings, Sanofi US, Bethesda, Maryland; Donna L. Mendrick, US FDA/National Center for Toxicological Research, Silver Spring, Maryland; Raymond R. Tice, National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences/National Toxicology Program, Research Triangle Park, North Carolina; Paul B. Watkins, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, North Carolina, and The Hamner Institutes for Health Sciences, Research Triangle Park, North Carolina; Maurice Whelan, European Commission, Joint Research Centre, Ispra, Italy; and Ivan Rusyn, SOT Council Contact, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, North Carolina.
Some aspects of this topic were covered in the October 2012 FutureTox CCT meeting. This FutureTox II CCT provided a forum for a detailed scientific discussion of how the biological pathways of interest will be elucidated, characterized, and qualified for pathway-based risk assessment. The Society of Toxicology appreciates the generous contributions of the following FutureTox II sponsors: American Academy of Clinical Toxicology, American Chemistry Council, American College of Toxicology, Consumer Specialty Products Association, Elsevier, Grocery Manufacturers Association, The Hamner Institutes for Health Sciences, ILSI Health and Environmental Sciences Institute, Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA)/California Environmental Protection Agency (Cal/EPA), Teratology Society, Society of Toxicologic Pathology, Department of Environmental Sciences and Engineering, Gillings School of Public Health, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill; US EPA, and US FDA. A Forum Report of this conference will be submitted for publication in Toxicological Sciences. View the agenda and invited speakers for this conference.
Advance the Science of Toxicology by Organizing a CCT Meeting
Society of Toxicology (SOT) Contemporary Concepts in Toxicology (CCT) Meetings expand the opportunities and forums for members to engage in the exchange of ideas and information relevant to toxicology. CCT Meetings are one- to two-day focused, open registration, scientific meetings in contemporary and rapidly progressing areas of toxicological sciences. The CCT Meetings also can be held as webinars.
If you think that your research area could be enhanced by thought leader collaboration or that public health and safety could be improved by disseminating your research findings more broadly, please consider organizing an SOT CCT Meeting. The CCT Conferences Committee and the SOT Headquarters staff are prepared to help move your meeting forward.
CCT Meetings focus on a wide range of topics and a future CCT addresses the following:
In order to sustain the quality standards of the Society, only meetings in which SOT maintains scientific and administrative control will be considered. Meetings developed and administered by other organizations may be eligible for endorsement by the Society of Toxicology.
Undergraduate Educator Network Webinar Recordings Available
The SOT Education Committee Undergraduate Education Subcommittee announces that recorded Undergraduate Educator Network Webinars are now available. The presentation slides also are posted for review.
The first webinar was “Having it All: Teaching, Research, and Service at a Small Liberal Arts College: a Toxicologist’s Perspective” presented by Larissa Williams of Bates College. She discussed challenges, opportunities, and strategies for success. Panelists Gregory Hall, US Coast Guard Academy, Eli Hestermann of Furman University, and Eva Oberdorster, Southern Methodist University, provided perspectives based on experiences at their institutions.
In the recent webinar “Education and Enrichment Activities for Educators,” Sue Ford, St. John’s University, provided an overview of meetings, workshops, journals, and other resources for faculty to strengthen their abilities to enhance learning outcomes and increase student-centered learning. Pamela Hanson of Alabama Southern University provided insight into the acquisition of grant resources for faculty and examples of funded projects that succeed in increasing student engagement in research and interdisciplinary approaches. Diane Hardej, St. John’s University, and Joshua Gray, US Coast Guard Academy, described pedagogical workshops in which they had participated.
A third webinar “Innovative Uses of Technology for Teaching Toxicology” will occur in April. Angela Slitt, University of Rhode Island, Kingston, Rhode Island, will describe the use of Twitter in a freshman course focusing on the problems of toxicology and how to communicate toxicology to the broader community. She will be joined by other presenters who will discuss the use of other technological tools. If you are interested in participating as a discussant during this webinar, please contact me at Joshua P. Gray to volunteer.
You can listen to the webinar recording at your convenience. If you have any feedback on this webinar, as well as any suggestions for future webinar topics (oriented towards career development), please send them to me at Marianna Stamou, Chair of the GSLC Professional Development Subcommittee.
Ask Ashley How to Upload Your CV on the Member CVs Site on ToXchange
Each month I have updated my profile picture and sent out a blog article inviting all members to do the same. It really is fast and easy to do! As I have received questions about how to further add to your profile and improve your “discoverability” on ToXchange, I will be posting a new series of articles entitled “Just Ask Ashley” on how to do other things as well. Today, I’ll detail how you can post your curriculum vitae (CV) to the Members CVs site on ToXchange. Of course, you will first want to update your CV prior to posting. Once you’re ready with your updated CV (.doc or .pdf files accepted), here’s how to upload it on ToXchange:
How to Upload your CV:
If you have any questions on how you can update your profile on ToXchange, please submit them by selecting the “Add Comment” button at the bottom of this blog article. Uploading your profile picture and your CV are just two of the first things you can do.
I’ll cover more items every month. So remember, if you need to know how to do something on ToXchange, just add a comment or send an email to “Just Ask Ashley” at SOT Headquarters.
Wishing you all the best,
“Just Ask” Ashley
SOT Membership Dues Assistance Program for Student and Postdoctoral Members
Do you know an international applicant for membership in the Society who could benefit from the Membership Dues Assistance Program?
SOT encourages international membership and recognizes that toxicologists are active in areas of the world where even reduced SOT dues payments may present a technical (e.g., mechanisms for fund transfers to the US may be costly or not available) or financial challenge. SOT Council maintains funds for a Membership Dues Assistance Program for Student and Postdoctoral members with special consideration for those from countries on the SOT Developing Countries list. Applicants who request membership dues assistance receive a follow-up request for a letter explaining why it is difficult to pay SOT dues.
Come in From the Cold and Get Recognized—Upload Your Profile Picture Today!
Come in from the cold—post your profile picture to your ToXchange MyPage and get recognized! You will be sure to get a warm reception.
In the month of January, SOT members logged in to ToXchange and searched for other members more than 6,000 times. By uploading your profile picture, you will be recognized by other members searching for you. SOT members search for other members the most in the months before the SOT Annual Meeting. So come in from the cold and get recognized—upload or update your profile picture today.
Go to your MyPage:
1) From the My Options drop-down in the upper right corner, select MyPage.
This is what your My Page looks like:
Update your picture!
First, be sure to know where your picture file is located so that you may easily browse and select it to upload.
1) On your MyPage, click the "Actions" button and select “Update Picture.”
It’s as easy as 1-2-3! If you need help, just click on “Help” in the top right of your ToXchange page—OR—just write in your question below and we’ll write a response to help you out.
ToXchange—It’s Your Network!
Going Back to Give Back
Kimberly Hodge-Bell visited her alma mater, Virginia Union University, in October and, through a grant from SOT’s Diversity ToxScholar Program, was able to connect with over 90 students to share her experiences and enthusiasm for the science of toxicology. The program offers up to $500 for members to visit institutions and establish mentoring relationships with faculty and students to encourage careers in toxicology.
Going Back to Give Back
Wow, it was over 20 years ago that I started on my journey to becoming a Toxicologist. Ever since I was a little girl, whenever I was asked “what do you want to be when you grow up,” my immediate response was “I am going to be a doctor.” As a littler girl, I did not realize that there were many roads to becoming a “doctor” and a medical doctor was only one of several types of doctors.
My aspirations of becoming a doctor continued as I enrolled in Virginia Union University (Richmond, VA). I was adamant about pursing a career in medicine. After my freshman year, I began to question what else could I do with a biology degree. Maybe I could teach or become a laboratory assistant or even work as a regulatory scientist with the US Environmental Protection Agency (US EPA) or US Food and Drug Administration (US FDA). With a glazed look on my face, I went to my professor’s office and asked if I didn’t go to medical school then what can I do with “this degree.” His response was priceless; “What do YOU want to do with it? There are so many options but the choice is yours.” That very conversation changed the trajectory of my career path and motivated me to look into other career options. And the rest is history!
In October 2013, the Society of Toxicology Domestic ToxScholar Outreach Program afforded me the opportunity to visit the very place where I started my scientific journey, Virginia Union University. I decided that is was time to go back and give back those words of encouragement, as well as challenge the undergraduate students at my alma mater to think outside of the box when it comes to their careers.
As I entered the building and was walking through the hallways, I could hear VUU‘s alma mater song written by Dr. William Yancey (1933).
Union, we’ll e’er revere the cause for which you stand.
Union! Majestic light, send rays throughout the land;
Thy hallowed grounds and dear old walls,
May they forever be,
Dear Union we still love thee!
I looked at my host, smiled, and said “Dear Union we still love thee.” Although as an undergraduate, that was not my favorite song (smile), I now realize that my passion to succeed and my excitement for mentoring/coaching started on the hallowed grounds and within in the dear old walls of Virginia Union.
During my visit to Virginia Union, I had the opportunity to share my journey to becoming a toxicologist with biology and chemistry students in a classroom setting and with individual meetings. Talking with the students helped them realize that toxicology is a part of our everyday life. Surprisingly, many students were introduced to toxicology for the first time. The students were intrigued to learn about the core principles of toxicology, the available training programs (e.g., internships), and toxicology career opportunities that could help to expand their academic and professional scientific experience. My last presentation of the day was to a senior biology class. We talked extensively about what is next after graduation. This session really touched home for me because I remember sitting in that same seat 20 years ago, with the same questions and same fears about my career path. After talking with the senior class, my hope is that I influenced the students to consider the opportunities in the field of toxicology and inspired them that a career in toxicology is exciting yet enjoyable. It is always a pleasure to go back to my alma mater and to give back.
Special Thanks to Anthony Madu, Hosting Professor at Virginia Union University, the Society of Toxicology’s Domestic ToxScholar Outreach Grant Program, and the Committee on Diversity Initiative.
Through the contributions of volunteers like Dr. Hodge-Bell, the Committee on Diversity Initiatives is hoping to strengthen the role of the ToxScholar Program as a tool to reach out to minority undergraduate students to inform them about opportunities in toxicology and about the resources offered by SOT. Visits to minority institutions are funded through the Committee on Diversity Initiatives and trips to other undergraduate institutions are funded through the Education Committee. The SOT website has information on how you can “Go Back to Give Back” through the SOT ToxScholar Program.
2014 3rd West African Society of Toxicology Conference: Sponsored by SOT
Submitted by Orish Ebere Orisakwe
The West African Society of Toxicology (WASOT) is the umbrella organization of scientists that promotes the awareness and practice of toxicology in Sub Sahara Africa. The 3rd WASOT conference was held February 19–22, 2014, at the Julius Berger Hall of the University of Lagos, Akoka, Lagos, Nigeria. This year’s theme is “Global Understanding of Chemicals In Health, Diseases, and Economics 2,” with a sub-theme of “Chemicals in the Environment & the Perpetuation of Infections.” This meeting was sponsored in part by the Society of Toxicology.
Three eminent American Professors of Toxicology including José E. Manautou, Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, School of Pharmacy, University of Connecticut; Judith T. Zelikoff, Nelson Institute of Environmental Medicine, New York University Medical College; and Alvaro Puga, University of Cincinnati, were speakers. Professor Catherine Klein also from Nelson Institute of Environmental Medicine, New York University Medical College, USA participated in this conference. This meeting, which promises to facilitate interactions between students and renowned scientists in academia, government, and industry, is indeed a conference not to be missed. For additional information, please visit the WASOT website.
Dr. Orisakwe was awarded participation in the SOT 2012 Global Senior Scholar Exchange Program (GSSEP) and Dr. Zelikoff served as his GSSEP host.
The Argentine Ministry of Science Recognizes Ofelia Olivero
Society of Toxicology (SOT) Member Ofelia A. Olivero was recognized with the RAICES Award at a special ceremony November 18 at the National Congress in Buenos Aires. Presented by Argentina Minister of Science, Technology, and Productive Innovation Lino Barañao, 21 Argentine and foreigner scientists were honored for their contribution to the scientific and technological development of the country with the RAICES Award or the Luis Federico Leloir Award. Pictured from left to right are Ing. Águeda Menvielle, Director, Department of International Relations, Ministry of Science, Julián Dom??nguez. President of the Congress, Ofelia A. Olivero, Lino Bara??ao, Minister of Science, and Graciela Giannettasio, House Representative.
During the ceremony Dr. Barañao stressed that “This is one of the most expected events for two reasons: the scientific reputation of the award winners and the willingness to cooperate and establish links with science and Argentine scientists. This has an emotional connotation, which is unprecedented in science.” Each awardee presented a short talk on highlighting their experience abroad. The ceremony culminated with a dinner with the Minister.
The RAICES Award recognizes Argentine scientists who live abroad and have made a contribution for strengthening networking and scientific and technological capabilities for this country of their origin. The RAICES (Network of Argentine Researchers and Scientists Living Abroad) program promotes repatriation and networking of Argentine scientists living abroad.
Four of those recognized received the Luis Federico Leloir Award that celebrates the significant contributions of foreign persons to increasing international cooperation in science, technology, and innovation within Argentina. This award honors the achievements of Luis Federico Leloir, Argentine scientist who received the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1970.
The Ministry of Science, Technology and Productive Innovation was created in December 2007 by President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner. It is the first in Latin America that includes production innovation connected to science and technology. Its mission is to guide science, technology, and innovation towards strengthening a new production model that generates greater social inclusion and improves the competitiveness of the Argentine economy, under the paradigm of knowledge as the heart of the development.
Dr. Olivero serves as the 2013–2014 Chair of the Committee on Diversity Initiatives. She also is a member of the National Capital Area Regional Chapter and the Women in Toxicology and Hispanic Organization of Toxicologists Special Interest Groups as well as the Carcinogenesis Specialty Section. She joined SOT in 2004.
Joseph S. Kulesza
Society of Toxicology (SOT) Member Joseph S. Kulesza passed away on December 14, 2013 in Milltown, New Jersey. A note from his family to SOT Headquarters noted that “He was a long-term, proud member of the Society of Toxicology.” Mr. Kulesza joined SOT in 1970.
Paul E. Morrow
Society of Toxicology (SOT) Member Paul E. Morrow passed away on December 9, 2013. He was affiliated with the University of Rochester Medical Center, Rochester, New York, before moving to Colorado in 2011. He was a member of the Inhalation and Respiratory Specialty Section and served on the Education Committee (1982–1984). He joined SOT in 1968.
2014 ToxExpo Exhibit Hall Hours and Exhibited-Hosted Sessions
ToxExpo is the profession’s largest trade show of its kind in the world. Attendees and exhibitors from around the globe gather to exchange ideas and debut cutting-edge products, services, and technologies. Moreover, ToxExpo provides a great opportunity for face-to-face meetings, building relationships with new prospects, connecting with current clients and customers, and networking with other exhibiting companies.
We are expecting more than 6,500 scientists and industry professionals to attend the Society of Toxicology’s 53rd Annual Meeting and ToxExpo to be held March 23–27, 2014, Phoenix, Arizona.
ToxExpo 2014 exhibit hours are as follows:
Awards Ceremony and Welcome Reception
SOT will recognize our prestigious award recipients at the SOT Awards Ceremony on Sunday, March 23 in the Phoenix Convention Center, North Ballroom 120D. The Awards Ceremony Music will be performed by Nicole Pesce from 4:45 pm–5:15 pm. The Awards Ceremony will be held from 5:15 pm–6:30 pm. Please refer to the Awards and Fellowships section of the SOT website for complete details about the award recipients and criteria for the prestigious SOT and sponsored awards. The Society also will recognize two individuals who have signifcantly and positively influenced the fields of toxicology with Honorary Membership: Sir John B. Gurdon and Donald E. Ingber.
Continue the celebation at the Welcome Reception, a great opportunity to renew old friendships and to make new acquaintances. Please join the Society in this kick-off of the Annual Meeting immediately after the Awards Ceremony from 6:30 pm–7:30 pm, Phoenix Convention Center, Hall 1.
SOT 53rd Annual Meeting Highlights: Featured Presentations
The Society of Toxicology 53rd Annual Meeting and ToxExpo will feature nearly 3,000 presentations including featured lectures and over 2800 abstracts. Some of the highlights are as follows:
SOT Frontiers for Toxicology Session
The Scientific Program Committee (SPC) inaugurated this new session at the 2013 Annual Meeting. The Frontiers for Toxicology Session has been designed to focus on a cutting-edge subject that will impact basic and applied toxicology research. The topic for 2014 is “Noncoding RNAs in Human Health, Therapeutics, and Environmental Disease,” which will held on Tuesday, March 25, 9:00 am–11:45 am.
During the past 10 years, significant advances have been made in gaining an understanding of the role of noncoding RNAs spanning the period from organismal development and continuing throughout all stages of life. Although the biological role of noncoding RNA has yet to be fully understood, it is important to emphasize that only a small fraction of the mammalian genome codes for mRNAs, and yet the majority of the remaining genome is transcribed into noncoding RNAs. It is tempting to speculate that a large proportion of these noncoding RNAs are transcribed for the distinct purpose of carrying out critical regulatory functions. Indeed, there is a growing literature identifying specific processes under the control of noncoding RNAs and, likewise, the pathology that can ensue when noncoding RNA regulatory processes are disrupted. Relatively little is known concerning the influence environmental factors exert on noncoding RNAs at the level of their expression, function, or contribution to the etiology of disease processes; therefore, this represents an important frontier for toxicological investigation.In light of the importance of this relatively new area of biology and its potential impact on human health, the goal of this session is to feature eminent scientists who have made important contributions and advances to our current knowledge of noncoding RNAs. The broad areas to be addressed include general concepts surrounding the biology of noncoding RNAs, their role in development and in specific disease processes, and their potential role in novel therapeutic approaches.
The speakers in this session include John Mattick, Garvan Institute of Medical Research, Darlinghurst, NSW, Australia; Muller Fabbri, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, California; Caroline Lee, Duke University-National University of Singapore, Singapore; and Joshua Mendell, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, Texas.
A Conversation with the Director of NIEHS: Dr. Linda S. Birnbaum
This important session, “A Conversation with the Director of NIEHS: Dr. Linda S. Birnbaum” will be held on Monday, March 24, 1:30 pm–2:30 pm. The format of this session will provide an informal venue for meeting attendees to have a candid and open discussion with Dr. Birnbaum concerning the direction, funding opportunities, and scientific priorities for the National Institute for Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS). The entire session will be devoted to a question and answer period featuring Dr. Birnbaum. She has served as the Director of the NIEHS and the National Toxicology Program since 2009.
Webinar: Best Practices for Annual Meeting Proposal Submission and Review
The Scientific Program Committee (SPC) values the input we receive from the membership, in particular the SOT Committees, Special Interest Groups, Specialty Sections, Regional Chapters, and Task Forces, with respect to the Annual Meeting Program. Therefore, please mark your calendar for Tuesday, March 11, 2014, to participate in a Best Practices Webinar from 2:00 pm–3:30 pm EDT. The SPC has continued this event based on the success of the Best Practices Webinars in the past three years.
We anticipate this webinar will continue and expand the dialogue; provide an overview of the submission, review, and decision process; and answer some of the frequently asked questions related to proposal submission. We are aware of the exciting opportunities as well as challenges for the proposal developers and would like to discuss how we can continue to improve this process and make our SOT activities even stronger.
We intend that this planned webinar will provide some insight into the SPC review process including proposal feedback, the distinction between tentative vs. final acceptance, and the endorsement (formerly “sponsorship”) process, and changes to the review process for front-line groups (RC/SIG/SS/Committee/Task Force) for the 2015 Annual Meeting.
We hope that you’ll set aside some time to participate in this interactive session. Webinar specifics, including the dial-in details, will be sent to the presidential chain, or chairperson, of each SOT component group, committee, and task force. Should you have any questions, please feel free to contact SOT Headquarters at 703.438.3115.
Please register for this event.
Global Gallery of Toxicology Features Our Sister Societies
Toxicology societies from around the world are invited to participate in the Global Gallery of Toxicology. Now in its fourth year at the SOT Annual Meeting, posters showcasing the history, key accomplishments, strategic initiatives, and current and future activities of these sister societies will be prominently displayed during the meeting. In addition, the 2014 Global Gallery poster session has a “Representative Attended” poster time of 11:45 am–12:15 pm on Monday, March 24. The goal of SOT and of all these societies is to further the science of toxicology to advance human health and disease prevention. The Global Gallery is located in the Exhibit Hall across from SOT Pavilion, Booth 1623.
SOT Recognizes 25th Anniversary of Undergraduate Program: Welcomes Outstanding Students to Phoenix
The Committee on Diversity Initiatives (CDI) welcomes all Annual Meeting attendees to drop by the Phoenix Convention Center Room 105 West at 7:00 pm on Saturday, March 22, for the CDI Reunion. At this event, the Committee will recognize those who have been involved in the Undergraduate Education Program for Minority Students in the last 25 years. Program founder Marion F. Ehrich will speak as well as Marquea D. King, a long-time volunteer. Special guests include those who first came to a Society of Toxicology (SOT) Annual Meeting as undergraduates through this program and now are toxicologists and program volunteers. CDI Chair Ofelia A. Olivero notes the tremendous effort of all the volunteers who make the Undergraduate Education Program possible every year—CDI chairs, committee members, presenters, toxicologist host mentors, student/postdoctoral peer mentors, faculty and research mentors, and others who give their time so generously to support the program and encourage promising young scientists in toxicology.
The Perry J. Gehring Diversity Student Travel Award recipient, Pamella B. Tijerina of New York University School of Medicine, also will be recognized during this event. This Endowment Fund Award provides special recognition and travel support for an undergraduate or a graduate student who participated in the SOT Undergraduate Minority Program within the last four years and is presenting an abstract at the meeting. Ms. Tijerina participated in the 2011 Undergraduate Education Program. Receiving Honorable Mention is Zuleirys Santana-Rodriguez from the University of Puerto Rico, Rio Piedras, who attended the 2013 program.
The CDI Reunion will cap the first of a 3-day Undergraduate Education Program, Saturday, March 22, through Monday March 24. The program is designed to encourage gifted science students to pursue graduate studies and careers in toxicology. This year, the CDI has selected twenty-four students from ethnic groups underrepresented in the sciences and three advisors from minority institutions to attend the meeting. They also invited nine students from schools receiving low levels of federal funding in science, math, and engineering. Travel funding for minority students and their advisors is partially supported by a grant from National Institute of General Medical Sciences and National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences of the National Institutes of Health under award number 1R13 GM108246-010. SOT funding supports students from underserved institutions.
During the program, students get an overview of toxicology, take part in a hands-on interactive session, and learn about graduate school and careers in toxicology. In addition, students have a session with more than thirty academic and internship program directors offering opportunities in toxicology. This year the students will participate in the meeting all day Monday, allowing more time in scientific and poster sessions than in previous years. Attending the SOT Annual Meeting is a tremendous opportunity for an undergraduate to learn about educational and career opportunities in toxicology.
2014 CE Course Spotlight: Methodologies in Human Health Risk Assessment
Submitted by Bette Meek, Jay Zhao, and John C. Lipscomb, 2014 Continuing Education Presenters
PBPK Modeling, Mode of Action Analysis, Benchmark Dose Modeling, and Chemical Specific Adjustment Factors…What is Risk Assessment coming to? What’s wrong with the way we used to do it? Are you finding yourself stuck in the same old rut? Tired of getting criticized for not working in the new millennium? Sunday morning, March 23, join us in Phoenix to see what these advances are all about.
SOT’s Continuing Education (CE) Course (AM06), Methodologies in Human Health Risk Assessment, brings together internationally recognized leaders in their respective areas to distill the advantages, data requirements, and methods for these approaches to modern risk assessment. The unifying theme for these lectures is that chemicals produce graded responses through dose dependent interactions with target tissues. Understanding the mode of action can elucidate key precursor steps, dose dependency, and human relevance of observed animal toxicity. With hazards and potential target tissues identified, physiologically based pharmacokinetic modeling helps refine dose response modeling, aids species extrapolation of internal dosimetry, and serves as a crucial aid in determining which internal measures of dose are most related to toxic outcome. Benchmark dose modeling surpasses the ‘traditional” NOAEL/LOAEL approach to dose response modeling, because this US EPA-recommended approach uses response data from the entire range of doses (and it also can be applied to internal dose metrics!) to identify a point of departure. Once response levels are identified in animals or in humans, the chemical specific adjustment factor approach provides a framework for inclusion of empirical toxicokinetic and dose response data to avoid reliance on default uncertainty factor values for inter- and intraspecies dose extrapolation. And, all of these approaches can be accomplished using freeware! To register, please visit the SOT Annual Meeting website. You may also access a full listing of the 2014 CE courses.
Skin and Eye Toxicity Models Provide Examples for Interactive In Vitro Toxicology Lecture and Lunch
The Education Committee and speaker Helena Kandarova will be challenging students and postdocs who are participating in the In Vitro Toxicology Lecture and Luncheon at 12:00 noon on Monday, March 24, to answer questions individually as well as to review data and discuss validity with their group. The “no electronic device” sign does not apply as participants will be asked to respond to questions using their mobile devices and audience answers will be incorporated into the presentation.
Dr. Kandarova will provide background in her talk “Searching for ReliableReplacement Models in Topical Toxicology—Focus on Skin and Eye Toxicity.” Trainees will explore how development of reliable and relevant replacement models is, in many cases, hindered by technical difficulties or lack of knowledge and, at later stages, by lack of scientific and regulatory willingness to accept the novel systems.
The goal of the In Vitro Toxicology Lecture is to illustrate how these test methods benefit animal welfare by refining, reducing, and replacing animal use whenever it is feasible. Undergraduate students, graduate students, and postdoctoral scholars obtain a ticket for the event for $10 (nonrefundable) during Annual Meeting registration. Recipients of Colgate-Palmolive awards and other invited guests will serve as table hosts and encourage discussion.
Do You Know Enough Epidemiology?
Submitted by Nancy Beck and Julie Goodman, Chairpersons of the upcoming 2014 Continuing Education course, “Epidemiology for Toxicologists: What the Numbers Really Mean.”
Can you explain why there is actually no conflict in these statements: “An informal survey showed one-third of the respondents who lived along Coldwater Creek reported they had developed cancers. The survey was in contrast with a report last year from the Missouri Department of Health & Senior Services that found no elevated risk of cancer for people living in the six ZIP codes adjacent to the creek. St. Louis Post-Dispatch, Missouri. Opinion, 22 January 2014.”
This 2014 SOT Annual Meeting Continuing Education Course “Epidemiology for Toxicologists: What the Numbers Really Mean” will introduce fundamentals of epidemiology and is geared toward toxicologists who want to evaluate and utilize epidemiology data in their assessments. In addition, this course will show you the role biomarkers play in epidemiology and how to determine whether a statistical association indicates causation. The course will end with a real-life case study that will help you understand how to integrate epidemiologic information with toxicologic information to ensure that both lines of evidence are appropriately considered in a holistic manner. If this sounds intriguing, CE course PM09 will not disappoint you! To register, please visit the SOT website. At the Society website, you also can access a full listing of the CE courses.
Undergraduates Encouraged to Pursue Toxicology via SOT Annual Meeting and Other Activities
Awards for undergraduates presenting posters have increased to 11 this year with the addition of funds from the SOT Endowment as well as those provided by Pfizer. The Pfizer SOT Undergraduate Travel Award recipients are selected by the Education Committee from the many outstanding applicants based on their meeting abstracts, academic record, and statements from the student and mentor. The 2014 awardees include Wesley Cai, University of Arizona; Elaine Kuo, Stanford University (research conducted at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution); Cory V. Gerlach, Oregon State University; Lukas Gora, Michigan State University; Virginia Mitchell, University of Utah; Kia Z. Perez-Vale, University of Puerto Rico Arecibo (research conducted at Michigan State University); Ricardo Rivera-Soto, University of Puerto Rico Arecibo (research conducted at Michigan State University); Bradley Rowland, McMurray University (research conducted at Texas Tech University Health Science Center); Kelly Schlotman, Purdue University; Jennette Shoots, Kenyon College; and Kelly VanDenBerg, Michigan State University. Pfizer toxicologists host these students at special events during the meeting and they are recognized at the Annual Meeting Awards Ceremony.
Undergraduate students who were not selected for travel support and participation in the full 3-day Undergraduate Education Program may register for the Sunday portion of the program (March 23, 2014) when they register for the meeting. On Sunday, speakers make topical introductory toxicology presentations and students also learn about toxicology careers, what graduate school is like, and have the valuable opportunity to meet with academic program directors and internship hosts. The photo above shows students meeting academic program directors.
All undergraduates at the meeting also are invited to the undergraduate student meeting hosted by the Education Committee Undergraduate Education Subcommittee, which is held at 4:00 pm–5:00 pm on Wednesday, March 26, in Room 226A of the Phoenix Convention Center.
Register for Your Ticket to Attend the Student/Postdoctoral Scholar Mixer
The Graduate Student Leadership Committee hosts the Student/Postdoctoral Scholar Mixer as an opportunity for students and postdoctoral scholars to gather, meet new colleagues, and reestablish relationships in an informal atmosphere at the beginning of the SOT Annual Meeting. The mixer will be held on Sunday, March 23, 7:30 pm–9:00 pm, in the Phoenix Convention Center in Room 301C West. Tickets are obtained at no cost either by registering for this event on the Annual Meeting Registration Form or by requesting a ticket at the On-Site Registration Desk. A ticket and meeting badge are required to attend. Complimentary refreshments and a cash bar are available. For additional information, please contact David Rossé.
SOT Seeking Annual Meeting Reporters
With close to 170 scientific sessions and almost 2,900 abstracts submitted for the 53rd Annual Meeting and ToxExpo, Phoenix is going to be a hub of new and interesting toxicological science March 23–27, 2014. To make sure all of our attendees and members experience as much of the great research and discussions as possible, we need your help!
We’re recruiting SOT members to serve as an army of “reporters” during the Annual Meeting. These reporters will attend their choice of activities at the Annual Meeting, and throughout the week, they will deliver two or three written recaps about the activities they’ve attended. These recaps can be from a few paragraphs to detailed, point-by-point recountings. Ultimately, we want them to be representative of each writer. For some, this may mean a conversational tone and style, and for others, it may be a persuasive argument or opinion.
Here’s how the reporting will work:
One of our goals with this effort is to capture the feel and excitement of the Annual Meeting through the experience of our member reporters. As such, when sending a list of what you’d like to cover for us, feel free to include a wide variety of items—Continuing Education Courses, Symposia, Workshops, Poster Sessions, Lectures, etc. Our main focus is on the Scientific Sessions, but if you are interested in covering something else, let Michelle know.
We’re looking forward to seeing you all in Phoenix and are excited to make this year’s SOT Annual Meeting and ToxExpo the best one yet!
SOT 2014 Annual Meeting Tours Deadline Extended to March 7
The deadline for the tours to be held in conjunction with the SOT 53rd Annual Meeting in Phoenix, Arizona has been extended to March 7. This extension is to ensure your reservation for the Valley Discovery City Tour or Desert Botanical Garden & Heard Museum Tour. For additional information and to register, please visit the SOT 2014 Annual Meeting website.
SOT Annual Meeting Video Wall—Place Your Order Soon
The SOT Annual Meeting Video Wall is a high visibility feature located across from registration area, just outside the ToxExpo Exhibit Hall entrance. The Video Wall is the go-to place for the daily sessions and social events schedule, late breaking updates, the live Twitter feeds for #2014SOT and #ToxExpo, and real-time news and weather. Exhibitors who advertise can take advantage of this opportunity to gain more exposure for their company during ToxExpo.
The Video Wall is a great way to promote your exhibit and draw more attendees to your booth. Exhibitors can feature a short video or company logo and invitation to visit their booth. Download the Video Wall Advertising Flyer for more details and to place to your order.
SOT 2014 Annual Meeting Networking Time
The Scientific Program Committee has created a time on Tuesday, March 25, especially for attendee networking. You are encouraged to connect and engage with your colleagues at the Annual Meeting from 12:00 noon–1:30 pm on Tuesday between sessions.
Only networking events and Exhibit Hall activities are scheduled during this time, so meet your colleagues in ToxExpo, grab a bite to eat, and grow your network!
2014 Graduate Student Award Recipients Named by the SOT Awards Committee
Colgate-Palmolive Awards for Student Training in Alternative Methods
The SOT Awards Committee has selected graduate student award recipients to be recognized at the SOT 53rd Annual Meeting in Phoenix, Arizona. Laura E. Armstrong (pictured at left), University of Rhode Island, Kingston, Rhode Island and Christin M. Grabinksi (pictured at right), US Air Force Research Laboratory, Dayton, Ohio named the 2014 recipients of the Colgate-Palmolive Awards for Student Training in Alternative Methods.
The purpose of the Colgate-Palmolive Awards for Student Research Training in Alternative Methods is to enhance graduate student research training using in vitro methods or alternative techniques to reduce, replace, or refine use of animals in toxicological research. The training may include, but is not limited to, use of in vitro and ex vivo procedures, nonmammalian animal models, computer modeling, and structure-activity relationships, and is intended to help toxicology graduate students enhance their thesis or dissertation research.
Syngenta Fellowship Award in Human Health Applications of New Technologies
The SOT Awards Committee has named Dilshan S. Harischandra as the 2014 recipient of the Syngenta Fellowship Award in Human Health Applications of New Technologies. Mr. Harischandra, Iowa State University, Ames, Iowa will work on his project “Role of the Environmental Neurotoxicant Manganese in Cell-to-Cell Transmission on α-Synuclein in Parkinson’s Disease.
The Syngenta Fellowship Award in Human Health Applications of New Technologies is presented to either a third-year (or later) graduate student or a postdoctoral trainee. The funding is intended to support mode-of-action research aimed at characterizing dose-dependent effects of xenobiotics on mammalian systems in such a way that the causal sequence of key events underlying toxicity is elucidated. The work should permit a quantitative basis for extrapolation of the results from animal bioassays or animal models (in silico, in vitro) to humans at relevant human doses. The award consists of $15,000 in fellowship funds as well as travel to the SOT Annual Meeting to accept the award and travel to a Syngenta site to present the results.
SOT Graduate Student Travel Support
This year 70 graduate students will receive Graduate Student Travel Support to attend the Society of Toxicology 53rd Annual Meeting in Phoenix, Arizona. SOT Graduate Student Travel Support is provided, in part, with generous contributions from Battelle Foundation and Burroughs Wellcome Fund.The complete list of graduate students receiving these awards will be available in the Historical Awards Listing on the SOT website following the Annual Meeting.
Access more information on these and other SOT Awards on the Awards and Fellowships section of the SOT website by selecting the award criteria for the awards in which you are interested (i.e., Endowment Fund Awards, for Graduate Students, for Postdoctoral Fellows, for Scientists, for Undergraduate Students, and their Advisors, etc.). You also may select a specific award from the complete award listing from the drop-down menu on the SOT Awards and Fellowships page. Please note while most SOT Awards have an annual application deadline of October 9, many awards, especially those offered by SOT Regional Chapters, Special Interest Groups, and Specialty Sections, have deadlines throughout the calendar year. SOT offers more than 160 awards annually via all our programs. Every graduate student presenting at the SOT Annual Meeting is encouraged to apply for Graduate Student Travel Support and all are welcome to submit applications for the Colgate-Palmolive Awards for Student Research Training in Alternative Methods.
2014 CE Course Nonclinical Pediatric Drug Development: Considerations, Study Designs, and Strategies
Submitted by Kary Thompson and Elise Lewis, Chairpersons of the upcoming 2014 Continuing Education course, “Nonclinical Pediatric Drug Development: Considerations, Study Designs, and Strategies (PM11).”
Drugs for Kids? You bet!
Due to a historic lack of drug development for children 0 to 17 years old, “off-label” drug use is common place in pediatrics. According to a recent study, 96 percent of children admitted to a pediatric intensive care unit received drug treatments without pediatric labeling. Numerous problems are associated with this practice including a lack of data in children; uncertainty about whether a drug is effective in children for a particular disease; concerns about the side-effect profile; and a lack of PK information to support appropriate dosing. There is a critical need for effective, safe medicines for children; in recognition of this, worldwide health authorities now require pediatric plans for all drugs in development.
As part of the multidisciplinary needs of pediatric drug development, safety evaluation is a critical component, as children are simply not scaled-down adults. This 2014 SOT Annual Meeting Continuing Education (CE) course “Nonclinical Pediatric Drug Development: Considerations, Study Designs, and Strategies” will address the regulatory, scientific, and strategic inputs required to support the safe use of pharmaceuticals in children.This course will feature speakers from both the US Food and Drug Administration and European Medicines Agency, to provide the regulatory scaffold, followed by speakers addressing the nuts and bolts of juvenile toxicity testing for small molecules and biologics.
A new CE topic for SOT, this course is sure to be a valuable resource for scientists in a variety of settings. To register, please visit the 2014 SOT Annual Meeting website, where you can also access a full listing of the CE courses.
Visit the SOT Pavilion and Learn About Programs and Services of Benefit to You
Find out about the SOT Endowment Fund, Toxicological Sciences, SOT awards, and sponsored awards and fellowships, ToXchange—the SOT member network, educational programs directed across the spectrum from K–12 throughout the toxicology career, and everything taking place at the Annual Meeting.
All SOT Annual Meeting attendees are welcome to stop by at any time during ToxExpo hours as follows:
Be sure to stop by during one of the scheduled events listed below for specific information on these topics, programs, or component groups.
Monday, March 24 through Wednesday, March 26
Please stop by for these scheduled events each day:
9:00 AM–4:00 PM: Toxicological Sciences—Managing Editor Virginia Hawkins will answer your questions about the operations of the journal.
Hispanic Organization of Toxicologists—Meet and Greet
10:00 AM–10:30 AM: ToXchange Tutorial 1—Getting Started on ToXchange
11:00 AM–12:00 Noon: Graduate Student Leadership Committe—Meet and Greet (Tuesday Only)
12:00 Noon–1:00 PM: Mechanisms Specialty Section—Meet and Greet
2:00 PM–2:30 PM: ToXchange Tutorial 2—Updating your MyPage and Profile
3:00 PM–4:00 PM: Meet the Leaders—Regional Chapters, Special Interest Groups, and Specialty Sections
Toxicological Sciences—Editor-in-Chief Gary W. Miller will answer questions about research trends, vision for the journal, and new initiatives underway.
4:00 PM–4:30 PM: ToXchange Tutorial 3—Surveys and Polls; Advanced Features
Also, be sure to visit the Global Gallery, Regional Chapter, Special Interest Group, and Specialty Section poster displays across from SOT Pavilion (Booth 1623)—open throughout ToxExpo hours. And don’t miss the specially attended Global Gallery and RC/SIG/SS poster presentations on Monday, March 24, 11:45 am–12:15 pm.
2014 CE Course: Current Trends in Genetic Toxicology Testing
Submitted by B. Bhaskar Gollapudi and Stephen Dertinger, Chairpersons of the upcoming 2014 Continuing Education course, “Current Trends in Genetic Toxicology Testing.”
The scientific discipline of genetic toxicology is in the midst of a sea change. Regulatory requirements across the globe are being harmonized, with emphasis on “3 Rs” and germ cell effects. Rapid advances in molecular biology are facilitating the integration of biomarkers to investigate genomic damage as the field advances into the 21st century. Genetic toxicology is at the cross-roads of moving away from a qualitative science to the quantitative assessment of dose-responses, including the identification of point-of-departure (PoD) metrics to extrapolate effects to realistic human exposure levels.
“Current Trends in Genetic Toxicology Testing” has been designed to help you navigate these changes. Do not delay, register for this AM03 Continuing Education (CE) course today! Access a full listing of the CE courses at the 2014 SOT Annual Meeting website.
Preregistered Attendees to Receive Badges Soon
Name badges have been mailed to all attendees who registered by the January 31 deadline. In appreciation of serving on SOT Committees and Task Forces and as officers in the Regional Chapters, Special Interest Groups, Specialty Sections, and other SOT bodies, volunteers will receive (by special mailing), appropriate ribbons to affix to their SOT 53rd Annual Meeting badges. In recognition of their generous support of SOT programs, 2013–2014 SOT Endowment Fund contributors will be mailed a distinctive ribbon. If you do not receive the badge or the appropriate ribbons by mail, please check with the Registration Desk at the meeting. Look for “Badge Only” signage to facilitate pickup.
All About Poisons—Toxicology Revealed: SOT to Sponsor Public Library Outreach Program
SOT is proud to sponsor a toxicology public outreach program on Saturday, March 22, 10:00 am–12:30 pm, at the Burton Barr Central Library, 1221 N. Central Avenue, Phoenix. Many thanks to their Adult Services Division for hosting this seminar. Organized and moderated by Phil Wexler of the National Library of Medicine, who will offer introductory remarks and a whirlwind tour of toxicological history, this event features:
Speakers and audience members are invited to the People Pizza Pub, across the street from the Library, directly after the program, for lunch, beer, whatever, and to continue the discussion.
While this session is designed for the lay public, SOT members who are in town early enough are invited to join in to lend support and answer questions, and maybe even learn a thing or two. And if you are travelling with guests looking for an educational snapshot of your field and/or pizza, please encourage them to check it out.
More information? Please contact Phil Wexler.
SOT Annual Meeting: Career Development Program Track
To help you develop your near-term and long-term career pathway, plan on attending the SOT Annual Meeting Education-Career Development Sessions scheduled this year. The 2014 Sessions will be held in the Phoenix Convention Center and include the following:
SOT 2014 Annual Meeting: Internet Access at the Phoenix Convention Center
SOT knows the importance of staying connected to your daily activities while attending the Annual Meeting and provides several ways for you to access the Internet while at the Phoenix Convention Center.
@SOT—Internet Access and App Training
Free Wireless Internet Access
To connect to the free wireless Internet, browse the available wireless networks and select the SOT2014 wireless network. When prompted for a password, use sotguest to connect to the network. Once connected, launch your web browser and the SOT welcome splashpage will automatically load.
SOT Annual Meeting Job Bank is Your Career Resource
Located in the Phoenix Convention Center in 130 (Office) and 131 B–C (Interview Rooms), the SOT Job Bank Center provides Annual Meeting attendees with access to the Job Bank system as well as assistance in facilitating interviews at the SOT Annual Meeting. For SOT members, the job search service is provided free of charge. Be sure to log into the SOT Job Bank before the Annual Meeting to browse all of the open positions. For Job Posters, please be sure to post your position ahead of time to maximize your position’s visibility to candidates.
Personalized assistance is available if you are new to the Job Bank or have questions. For your convenience, printers will be available for producing hard copies of candidate profiles and position descriptions. All candidates and positions must be sought online.
SOT Job Bank Center Hours:
Employers recognize and appreciate that the SOT Job Bank Center provides a cost-effective and efficient way to meet and interview standout candidates. For your convenience, SOT provides eight interview rooms on-site, Monday through Wednesday, during the hours listed above. Employers may reserve interview rooms ahead of time or at the meeting on a first-come, first-served basis.
For additional information, contact Kevin Merritt at SOT Headquarters or call 703.438.3115 ext. 1601.
SOT 2014 Annual Meeting and ToxExpo Supporters
The Society of Toxicology (SOT) appreciates the generous contributions of 2014 Annual Meeting Supporters. These organizations are listed on the SOT website.
SOT 2014 Annual Meeting and ToxExpo Exhibitors
The Society of Toxicology (SOT) thanks the 2014 SOT Annual Meeting ToxExpo Exhibitors. These organizations are listed on the SOT website.
SOT Annual Meeting ToxExpo Prize Drawing—$500 Drawing Each Day ToxExpo Is Open
Announcing the Winners of the ToXchange Profile Picture Contest
As announced in December 2013, each month we have been encouraging every member to upload or update his/her profile picture on ToXchange. To provide additional incentive to do so by the end of 2013, we launched a year-ending ToXchange profile picture contest. Every Regional Chapter, Special Interest Group, and Specialty Section was automatically entered in the contest with the goal to achieve the highest percentage of your component group members to upload or update a profile picture by January 1, 2014.
Component groups with the highest percentage of member profile pictures posted by January 1, 2014, will receive an award stipend of $500 as travel support funds to the SOT Annual Meeting—to be dispersed at the discretion of the component group.
As component groups vary in the number of members, three levels of the competition were defined as follows:
“Up to 100 members” Winner: Central States Regional Chapter with 36.5% of members’ photos uploaded
“Up to 250 members” Winner: Metals Specialty Section with 38.0% of members’ photos uploaded
“More than 250 members” Winner: Women in Toxicology Special Interest Group with 36.2% of members’ photos uploaded
Congratulations to the winners who will receive $500 each in travel support funds to the SOT Annual Meeting.
Special Mention goes to the following component groups who exceeded 33% in members’ photos uploaded:
If you have not yet uploaded your profile picture on ToXchange, why not do it now? Go ahead, get recognized! You just might find it to be an “awarding” experience.
Now is the perfect time to post your profile picture because the closer we get to the Annual Meeting (March 23–27, 2014) the more member searches there are on ToXchange. So put your face with your name, upload your profile picture today! Here’s how:
Go to Your MyPage:
1) From the My Options drop-down in the upper right corner, select MyPage.
This is what your My Page looks like:
Update Your Picture!
First, be sure to know where your picture file is located so that you may easily browse and select it to upload.
1. On your MyPage, click the "Actions" button and select “Update Picture.”
2. Click the "Update File" button and browse for the picture file on your computer. You may upload a file as large as two MB only (most photos are between 1.0–1.5 MB).
3. Click the OK button to upload your selected picture.
It’s as easy as 1-2-3! If you need help, just click on “Help” in the top right of your ToXchange page—OR—just write in your question below and we’ll write a response to help you out. ToXchange—It’s Your Network!
High School Students and Teachers Invited to Participate in SOT Activities
The K–12 Subcommittee under the leadership of Angela Slitt invites high school students and teachers to participate in two Annual Meeting events designed to increase knowledge about toxicology and encourage pursuit of careers in toxicology. We thank the many SOT members who have volunteered to help with both events.
High School Student and Teacher Workshop:
Saturday, March 22, 8:30 AM–4:15 PM
Health Science Education Building, University of Arizona, Phoenix Biomedical Campus
This all-day workshop will convey the theme that toxicologists help ensure safer homes and healthy living. Activities will include featured presentations by SOT members and a consumer products safety activity that includes making lotion and exploration of safety evaluation data. Students and teachers will meet informally at lunch with toxicologists to learn about the exciting and diverse options for careers in toxicology. Todd Camenisch and Virunya Bhat are coordinating the workshop.
High School Poster Exposition
Tuesday, March 25, 10:30 AM–2:30 PM
ToxExpo Exhibit Hall, Phoenix Convention Center
High School students from the Phoenix area and from around the country will present toxicology-related research posters in a special area of ToxExpo. One student is a recipient of a travel award from the National Capital Area Regional Chapter thanks to a contribution from SRC to support students in science in the DC region. Please stop by to visit with these young scientists and encourage them to pursue careers in toxicology.
For more information, please contact Betty Eidemiller.
2014 SOT Annual Meeting Exhibitor-Hosted Session—Availability March 26
Exhibitor-Hosted Sessions have proven to be one of the most popular items for the SOT Annual Meeting & ToxExpo. Many exhibitors have already applied to host a one-hour session to promote their products and services to attendees. The sessions are almost sold out, but there is still availability on Wednesday, March 26. Don’t miss your chance to sign up. Fill out the Exhibitor-Hosted Session Application Form and take advantage of this great opportunity.
Reminder: Register Now for the 2014 SOT Mentoring Breakfast—March 24 in Phoenix
The 3rd annual SOT Mentoring Breakfast, which will be held during the SOT Annual Meeting in Phoenix, Arizona, is an opportunity for those interested in developing relationships with career mentors. Attendees will:
The SOT Mentoring Breakfast will be held on Monday, March 24, 2014 from 6:15 am–7:45 am. The event is limited to 60 mentees on a first-come, first-served basis. An attendance fee of $10 includes a continental breakfast.
Please note: only mentees interested in being matched with a mentor should register for this event. Matching of the registered mentees with a mentor will take place shortly following the Annual Meeting. If you are interested in being considered as a mentor, please sign up through the SOT Mentor Match website.
Interested mentees can sign up for the SOT Mentoring Breakfast through the SOT Online Registration.
SOT Annual Meeting 2015 Plans Are Underway: Consider Presenting a Scientific Session or CE Course
Do you have an idea for a Scientific Session or Continuing Education (CE) course that should be presented at the 54th SOT Annual Meeting? Now is the time to develop proposals for 2015. Each year, the Annual Meeting provides attendees from around the globe with an opportunity to learn about emerging fields and how they apply to toxicology. Why not position yourself to deliver a basic or advanced CE course, or a cutting-edge scientific session at the leading international forum for toxicologists. The 2015 proposal submission site is now open.
There are no parameters for topic proposals, but each will be reviewed under the current criteria for their timeliness and relevance to the field of toxicology and will be evaluated on their individual merit. Remember that all session types are eligible for Continuing Medical Education (CME) credit, so you should include that consideration in your proposal. If you wish to submit a proposal for consideration, we encourage you to begin working with your SOT Committee, Regional Chapter, Special Interest Group, Specialty Section, or Task Force.
We hope you will submit a proposal for the 54th Annual Meeting in San Diego, California in 2015! All proposals must be submitted online by April 30, 2014.
Medical Toxicologists Can Attend Two Meetings in Phoenix in March
As you make your plans to attend the Society of Toxicology (SOT) 2014 Annual Meeting, March 23–27, 2014, in Phoenix, Arizona, you may be interested in learning about the American College of Medical Toxicology (ACMT) Annual Scientific Meeting, March 27–30, at the Arizona Biltmore in Phoenix, Arizona, immediately following the SOT Annual Meeting. Registration for the ACMT Annual Scientific Meeting and Satellite Session meeting is currently open, and you may find extensive information about it on the ACMT Annual Scientific Meeting and Satellite Session website.
The 2014 ACMT Annual Scientific Meeting Objectives are as follows:
ACMT Annual Scientific Meeting features:
In addition, the Natural Toxins Academy will host a one-day conference on Thursday, March 27, 2014, focused on Clinical Applications of Cutting-Edge Research.
This one-day conference will focus on the evidence and experienced-based perspectives by experts in the field with respect to plant toxins, anti-venoms, and overall economic concerns associated with antidotal therapy.
ACMT is also announcing the 2014 SOT Annual Meeting to its membership. We hope that you will consider taking advantage of this unique opportunity to attend both the SOT Annual Meeting and the ACMT Annual Scientific Meeting in Phoenix, Arizona.
Notice of Intent to Publish the Reissuance of Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Awards
The National Institutes of Health (NIH), with participating NIH Institutes and Centers, intends to reissue the Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA), “Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Awards for Individual Predoctoral MD/PhD and Other Dual Doctoral Degree Fellows (Parent F30),” (PA-11-110). NIH will reissue the FOA no later than March 7, 2014 for applications due April 8, 2014 and subsequently.
The reissuance of this FOA will reflect the recommendations of the Biomedical Research Workforce Working Group of the Advisory Committee to the Director, NIH, to support this program broadly across the NIH Institutes and Centers. This Notice is being published now to provide ample time for prospective applicants to plan in advance of the reissuance of the FOA. The Kirschstein-NRSA F30 award may provide up to six years of support for research and clinical training that leads to the MD/PhD degree or another dual-doctoral degree. Because the F30 program is intended to support individuals matriculated in an integrated, dual-degree program during both their graduate research training and clinical training, the F30 cannot be used to support only the clinical training years.
The NIH encourages applications from students early in the research training phase of their dual-degree training so that they can substantively benefit from the mentored research training opportunities of an individual fellowship award. Moreover, to encourage timely completion of dual-degree training, the F30 fellowship is not intended to support dual-degree students after year eight of their dual-degree training program.
NIH Fiscal Policy for Grants Awards—FY 2014
This February 2014 Notice provides guidance about the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Fiscal Operations for FY 2014 and implements the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2014 (H.R. 3547/Public Law 113-76), signed by President Obama on January 17, 2014. The Act provides NIH with $30.15 billion, an increase of $1 billion (program level) over FY 2013. The NIH will continue to manage its portfolio in biomedical research investments in a manner that includes recognizing applications from and providing special incentives for new investigators.
The following NIH fiscal policies are instituted in FY 2014:
Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Awards (NRSA): Consistent with the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2014, and with the recommendations of the Advisory Committee to the Director regarding the Biomedical Research Workforce, the NIH will increase undergraduate and graduate student stipends by two percent. Entry level postdoctoral stipends will be increased to $42,000 with four percent increases between the individual levels of experience. The full range of stipend adjustments for FY 2014 is described the Notice about the Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award (NRSA) Stipends, Tuition/Fees and Other Budgetary Levels Effective for Fiscal Year 2014.
New Investigators: NIH will continue to support new investigators on R01 equivalent awards at success rates comparable to that of established investigators submitting new (Type 1) R01 equivalent applications. Achievement of comparable success rates should permit the NIH to support new investigators in accordance with the policies established in FY 2009 and subsequent years as described at Revised New and Early Stage Investigator Policies and at the NIH Grants and Funding website.
Salary Limits: Section 203 of the Consolidated Appropriations Act 2014 prohibits payments for salaries under grants and other extramural mechanisms in excess of Executive Level II. It should be noted that Executive Level II was increased by one percent from $179,700 to $181,500 by Executive Order 13655 that became effective January 12, 2014. For additional information, see the Notice of Salary Limitation on Grants, Cooperative Agreements, and Contracts.
Other Legislative Mandates: Other statutory requirements are described in the Notice of Legislative Mandates in Effect for FY 2014.
Additional Information: Additional details on Fiscal Operations, including specific funding strategies for ICs will be posted at the NIH Extramural Financial Operations website.
NIDCD Research Grants for Translating Basic Research into Clinical Tools
The National Institute of Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD) is encouraging applications that translate basic research findings into clinical tools for better human health in the NIDCD mission areas of hearing, balance, smell, taste, voice, speech, and language. The intent of this Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) is to provide a new avenue for basic scientists, clinicians, and clinical scientists to jointly initiate and conduct translational research projects. The scope of this FOA includes a range of activities to encourage translation of basic research findings that will impact the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of communication disorders. Multi-institutional, multi-disciplinary, and academic-industrial collaborations studies are encouraged. This FOA is not intended for health services/outcome studies, the extension of ongoing clinical research studies, the optimization of current clinical protocols, or pretranslational studies. Connection to the clinical condition must be clearly established and the outcomes of the grant must have practical clinical impact. For more information, please see the NIH website.
Revision Applications for Research on Metabolic Reprogramming to Improve Immunotherapy (P01)
Revision applications are expected to stimulate collaborative, cross-disciplinary research projects to (1) generate a mechanistic understanding of the metabolic processes that support robust anti-tumor immune responses in vivo, (2) determine how the metabolic landscape of the tumor microenvironment affects immune effector functions, and (3) to use this information to manipulate (or reprogram) the metabolic pathways used by the tumor, the immune response, or both to improve cancer immunotherapy.
This FOA will utilize the NIH program project grant (P01) mechanism and target revision applications from currently funded NIH P01 program project grants with at least two years of support remaining on the parent grant at the estimated time of award. For more information, please visit the NIH website.
NIGMS Research Centers for Pharmacogenomics in Precision Medicine Funding Opportunity
The purpose of this funding opportunity announcement (FOA) announcement from the National Institute of General Medical Sciences (NIGMS) is to stimulate the formation of centers that will conduct cutting-edge research studies designed to push the boundaries for understanding and predicting therapeutic drug responses. The FOA describes research centers that examine drug actions within the context of precision medicine, or data-driven prescribing. This program will support a limited number of large-scale multidisciplinary centers, each of which will serve as a national and international focal point. An applicant may request a budget of up to $1.75 million direct costs per year (excluding consortium Facilities & Administrative costs). Budgets should reflect the actual needs of the proposed center.
A center should be built around a tightly-focused theme and should represent innovative investigations at the forefront of understanding drug actions. The experimental approaches should go beyond pharmacogenomics, to include for example, examination of gene expression and regulation patterns, assessment of post-genomic modifications, other small-molecule “signatures” that contribute to the prediction of drug actions both therapeutic and adverse, and/or systems and pathway analysis. Other somatic mutations or genomes present, such as those of tumors, infectious agents, or resident microbes, should also be evaluated.
Each center should have a clinical interaction, either as a patient-oriented core or through an established relationship with clinical studies or trials conducted elsewhere. There should be bi-directional exchange between the research and clinical components, with a mix of experimental methods yielding complementary datasets that collectively enhance the foundational understanding and prediction of drug actions. But while the research results should contribute to ultimately guiding the future of patient care, the center’s current emphasis should primarily be on making fundamental new discoveries at the forefront for the field. A comprehensive overview and deadlines is posted on the Department of Health and Human Services website.
Funding Opportunity (Intent to Publish)—Centers for Children's Environmental Health
The National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences and the US Environmental Protection Agency intend to publish a joint Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) to solicit applications for Children’s Environmental Health and Disease Prevention Research Centers. The purpose of this program is to support a multidisciplinary program of applied and basic research along with an active community outreach effort to examine and translate the effects of early exposure to environmental hazards on children's health and wellbeing.
March 2014 Toxicological Sciences, Vol. 138, Issue 1 Now Available Online
The March 2014, Vol. 138, Issue 1 of Toxicological Sciences is now available online. To have the email Table of Contents (eTOC) alerts delivered to you as well as Advance Access notification of the latest papers and research in Toxicological Sciences as soon as they are accepted and posted to the website, please register online.
The paper selected for the Editor’s Choice in this issue is Influenza Vaccine Response in Adults Exposed to Perfluorooctanoate and Perfluorooctanesulfonate by Claire Looker, Michael I. Luster, Antonia M. Calafat,Victor J. Johnson, Gary R. Burleson, Florence G. Burleson,and Tony Fletcher. Toxicoloigical Sciences Editor-in-Chief Gary Miller stated in the Editor's Highlight that: "Vaccines and their possible adverse effects have received a great deal of popular attention, often based on sketchy science. In this issue of ToxSci, Luster and colleagues provide an example of how quality toxicological research can reveal connections between vaccines, immune function, and environmental exposures. The authors examined a human population that was exposed to perfluorooctanoate (PFOS) and how they responded to vaccines for influenza viruses. The results showed that individuals with high levels of PFOS had weaker antibody responses. Even though an increase in self-reported infections was not observed in this study, the fact that such inadvertent exposures can blunt one of the most important public health interventions demands further attention. Elderly and infirm populations often receive higher doses of vaccines to generate a more robust antibody response. The reported findings suggest that individuals exposed to certain environmental contaminants may also require higher doses of vaccines, or at least titer checks to confirm appropriate vaccine response."
Dr. Miller’s Editorial, The 53rd Annual Meeting of the Society of Toxicology…From Phoenix, Arizona provides an overview of the meeting as well as describing the process of “Presentations to Publications.” He notes: “There will also be dozens of symposia, workshops, and poster sessions that highlight recent research findings in toxicology. As the journal of the Society of Toxicology, Toxicological Sciences is a key outlet for the science that is presented at the national meeting. Sometimes, the findings are ready for publication soon after they are presented, sometimes it take months or years for a complete story to be developed. Either way, toxicologists should view Toxicological Sciencesas an ideal place to submit their work. The relationship between the Journal and the Society is symbiotic. The Journal relies on the Society membership to submit exciting science to serve as content.The Society relies on the Journal to disseminate important research findings that have been appropriated, vetted.”
Toxicological Sciences, the official journal of SOT, is among the most highly cited original research journals in Toxicology.
US FDA Launches Advisory Committee Membership Nomination Portal
On January 22, 2014, the US Food and Drug Administration (US FDA) launched the Advisory Committee Membership Nomination Portal, an online, interactive system that allows interested individuals to submit nominations for membership to any of the agency’s 33 advisory committees.
The portal will enable nominees to submit their application for membership on an advisory committee from the US FDA’s website, creating a paperless, streamlined process that will enable the agency to accept, evaluate, and ultimately nominate qualified individuals for membership in a timely fashion.
“The portal allows applicants to complete their entire application online,” said Jill Hartzler Warner, JD, acting associate commissioner of the US FDA’s Office of Special Medical Programs. “Applicants will experience an interactive, step-by-step process that eliminates confusion and accelerates the timeframe for submitting and processing an application.”
The system will securely store all applicant information and enable the US FDA to develop metrics for assessing the entire applicant pool to identify qualified candidates to fill specific vacancies on advisory committees. Currently, applications must either be emailed or mailed to the agency.
Nominations for scientific members and consumer and industry representatives may be submitted by professional societies, industry and consumer groups, and other interested persons and organizations. Potential candidates are asked to provide detailed information concerning such matters as financial holdings, employment, and research grants and/or contracts in order to permit evaluation of possible sources of conflict of interest.
In conjunction with the launch of the nomination portal, the US FDA also is posting a set of presentation slides on conflicts of interest for potential members, which can help in answering preliminary questions applicants may have on this important topic.
Advisory committees provide the US FDA with independent, expert advice on a range of complex scientific, technical, and policy issues. The US FDA seeks to include the views of women and men, members of all racial and ethnic groups, and individuals with and without disabilities on its advisory committees and, therefore, encourages nominations of appropriately qualified candidates from these groups.
For more information, please visit:
The US FDA, an agency within the US Department of Health and Human Services, protects the public health by assuring the safety, effectiveness, and security of human and veterinary drugs, vaccines and other biological products for human use, and medical devices. The agency also is responsible for the safety and security of our nation’s food supply, cosmetics, dietary supplements, products that give off electronic radiation, and for regulating tobacco products.