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Department of

Environmental Health

Photo of  Glenn Talaska, PhD

Glenn Talaska, PhD

Professor, Associate Director Department of Environmental Health Director, Division of Industrial and Environmental Hygiene and Biological Monitoring Component Program

Research/Clinical Interests

Glenn Talaska is professor of Environmental Health at the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine. He has a MSPH (Industrial Hygiene) from the University of Washington. He earned his Ph.D. at the University of Texas Medical Branch. Talaska was Research Toxicologist at the National Center for Toxicological Research. Talaska’s research is on the development and validation of biomarkers of carcinogen exposure and effect. Through the years this program has identified the major and disease- inducing carcinogen DNA adducts for bladder carcinogens 4-aminobiphenyl (tobacco smoke) and benzidine (dye workers). In addition he showed that the mechanism of action of benzidine DNA adducts was through the chromosomal aberrations they produced, while 4-aminobiphenyl caused specific mutations in cellular oncogenes. The lab developed a method of carcinogen DNA adduct analysis that utilizes urothelial cells exfoliated into the urine as a source of target tissue DNA for bladder carcinogens; this allows easy non-invasive sampling of an internal target tissue. This technique has allowed Talaska to study groups with occupational and environmental exposure to carcinogens. For example, he has shown that adduct levels in exfoliated urothelial cells of non-smoking wives of smokers are 1.8 times higher than in the wives of non-smokers; and that the adduct levels in benzidine workers are 25 times higher than controls. Glenn has published over 120 papers in journals such as Nature, PNAS, Cancer Research, JNCI, Carcinogenesis as well as in the more specialized Industrial Hygiene journals. He is on the editorial board of 5 Occupational and Public Health journals and has served as President of the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Health. Talaska has successfully mentored 7 Ph. D. and 27 MS students to their degrees and is currently the mentor to 2 more MS students. Talaska is the Vice-Chair of the ACGIH Biological Exposure Indices (BEI) committee. He is also Secretary of the Scientific Committee on Toxicology (SCOT) for the International Congress on Occupational Health. Talaska has recently been appointed to the World Trade Center Health Program’s Scientific/Technical Advisory Committee. He has been on the Scientific Advisory or Organizing Committees for over 15 international scientific meetings including every (triannual) International Society for Biological Monitoring meeting since 1993. Since 2001 Talaska has been the Chair of the University’s Radiation Safety Committee. Talaska is the Associate Director of the Department of Environmental Health, the Director of the Environmental and Occupational Hygiene Division and Director of the Biomonitoring Component Program. His current research is to determine the relationship between biomarkers of internal dose and reversible health effects in persons working with polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons. Groups studied include Firefighters, Coke Oven Workers and Tunnelers with the purpose to establish biological based exposure guidelines that will prevent disease in the millions of persons exposed to polycyclic aromatic compounds.

Contact Information

Peer Reviewed Publications

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Ward, E M; Sabbioni, G; DeBord, D G; Teass, A W; Brown, K K; Talaska, G G; Roberts, D R; Ruder, A M; Streicher, R P 1996. Monitoring of aromatic amine exposures in workers at a chemical plant with a known bladder cancer excess. Journal of the National Cancer Institute, 88 15, 1046-52