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Translational Toxicology

The Division of Translational Toxicology is an academic unit founded in 2010 in the Department of Epidemiology and Public Health. The Division of Translational Toxicology is an academic unit that conducts research on the health effects of chemicals, serves as a resource for chemical risk assessment issues, and provides graduate level training through the Graduate Program in Life Sciences. Faculty in the Division have expertise in molecular, cellular, and behavioral neurotoxicology, neuroanatomy, and neuroendocrinology. Interests of the research groups in the Division include, but are not limited to: (i) molecular and cellular mechanisms underlying the effects of insecticides, heavy metals, hormones, and therapeutic drugs in the mature and the developing nervous systems, (ii) animal and cellular models of toxic injury, (iii) epigenetic mechanisms that underlie the developmental toxicity of various chemicals, and (iv) identification and manipulation of druggable targets in neurodegenerative disorders, including Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s diseases.

Faculty members in the Division use multidisciplinary approaches that integrate information from the molecular to the cellular and behavioral levels for a comprehensive understanding of the impact of chemicals on neuronal and endocrine systems. In addition, faculty have experience with studies compliant with the principles of good laboratory practices (GLP) to support development of drugs to treat ailments induced by toxicants. Faculty, postdoctoral fellows, research assistants, and students all have active research collaborations with clinical and basic science departments and institutes within and outside the University of Maryland School of Medicine.

The Division provides graduate-level training primarily through different PhD-granting programs in the Graduate Program in Life Sciences, including the Molecular Medicine Program and the Program in Neuroscience, and the M.S.-granting Cellular and Molecular Biomedical Science program.

The mission of the Division builds on the vision of its first Director, Dr. Edson X. Albuquerque, to integrate a broad expanse of skills required to translate the identification of a novel molecular target for a specific toxicant into a clinically useful therapeutic entity.