WaterTalk: Microplastics and Human Health: Moving the Field Forward

Thursday, November 25, 2021 10:00 am - 11:00 am EST (GMT -05:00)

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Join us for a special WaterTalk co-hosted by the University of Waterloo’s Water Institute and The Waterloo Institute for Nanotechnology (WIN), where Juliette Legler, Chair of Toxicology, Institute for Risk Assessment Sciences, Utrecht University, The Netherlands, presents, “Microplastics and Human Health: Moving the Field Forward.”

More information

The ubiquity of microplastics (plastic particles <5 mm, including nano-sized plastics <1 micrometer) in the environment raises increasing concerns about their implications for human health. Recent evidence indicates that humans constantly inhale and ingest microplastics, however, it is unclear whether these contaminants pose a substantial risk to human health.  Initial studies suggest that microplastics are taken up in human tissues where they may cause biological effects. However, there are key knowledge gaps that need to be addressed in order to move the field forward and answer critical questions about the possible risks of microplastics on human health. In this presentation I will introduce research initiatives in Europe that address the lack of crucial data on human exposure and effects, to enable comprehensive risk assessment and support timely decision-making on health policies and mitigation strategies.

Speaker bio

Juliette Legler
Juliette Legler is Chair of Toxicology at the Institute for Risk Assessment Sciences, Utrecht University, where she also heads the Department of Population Health Sciences at the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine. Previously she worked at Brunel University London (2016-2017) and VU University Amsterdam (2001-2015) where she became a full professor in 2013. She has a BSc degree in environmental studies from University of Waterloo, and MSc and PhD degrees in environmental toxicology from Wageningen University, the Netherlands. Her research focusses on understanding how exposure to endocrine disrupting chemicals and other contaminants such as microplastics may affect health. Juliette has led various international research projects and currently coordinates the European Commission funded project GOLIATH (Generation of Novel, Integrated and Internationally Harmonised Approaches for Testing Metabolism Disrupting Compounds) as well as MOMENTUM (Microplastics and Human Health Consortium) funded by the Netherlands Organisation for Health Research and Development. More information on Juliette can be found at https://www.uu.nl/staff/JLegler

The University of Waterloo is committed to achieving barrier-free accessibility for persons with disabilities who are visiting, studying or working at Waterloo. If you have questions concerning access or wish to request accommodations for this event, please contact Julie Grant (j26grant@uwaterloo.ca)