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January 31, 2019 | 11:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Category: Seminar
Location: Integrative Biosciences Center IBio Conference Center | Map
6135 Woodward Ave.
Detroit , MI 48202
Cost: Free
Audience: Academic Staff, Alumni, Community, Current Graduate Students, Current Undergraduate Students, Faculty, Staff

The Wayne State University community is invited to attend an IBio  presentation with guest speaker, Michael Petriello, Ph.D., postdoctoral fellow in the Cardiovascular Research Center at the University of Kentucky. 

The presentation will be held on January 31, 2019 at 11:00 a.m. in the first floor seminar room of IBio, Located at 6135 Woodward. The seminar is free and open to the entire university community. 

Dr. Petriollo will present, "Impacts of halogenated persistent organics on cardiometabolic disease biomarkers and atherosclerotic risk."

Dr. Petriollo earned his B.S. degree in Biology and Environmental Sciences at Muhlenberg College and a Ph.D. in Toxicology at the University of Kentucky.


Cardiovascular and related metabolic disorders are largely caused by genetic (heritable) and environmental factors.  Understanding how these factors intersect to determine individual disease risk is a critical challenge in developing personalized approaches to the diagnosis and treatment of the disease.  Well-studied “lifestyle-dependent” determinants of increased cardiometabolic disease risk include smoking, physical inactivity, and poor nutrition, but emerging data now implicate exposures to persistent environmental pollutants as an important contributor to inter-individual variability in cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk.  Interestingly, emerging diet-derived biomarkers such as trimethylamine N-oxide (TMAO) have strong positive relationships with heart disease risk, and we have recently shown that a class of persistent organic pollutants known as dioxins can increase TMAO formation in preclinical models and are positively associated with circulating TMAO in residents of Anniston, Alabama.  Interestingly, these associations were evident only in women and diminish as BMI increases. To study mechanisms related to this unexpected observation, we have characterized a mouse model of pollutant exposure that develops atherosclerosis but not adipose tissue expansion.  We examined the effects of a dioxin-like pollutant, PCB 126, on markers of systemic inflammation, hepatic steatosis, modulation of gut microbiota, and atherosclerotic lesion size. Mice exposed to PCB 126 exhibited significantly increased plasma inflammatory cytokine levels, increased accumulation of hepatic fatty acids, reduced cecum bacteria alpha diversity, significantly increased Firmicutes to Bacteroidetes ratio, and accelerated atherosclerotic lesion formation in the aortic root. As environmental exposures to PCBs and other dioxins have decreased in recent decades, we have begun to investigate our paradigm of nutrient/toxicant interactions in emerging classes of halogenated pollutants including per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) which have been shown previously to positively associate with other clinically relevant biomarkers of CVD including total and/or low density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol in cross-sectional epidemiological studies.  Most recently, we developed an LC-MS-based method to quantiate multiple PFAS in serum/plasma and have begun to investigate associations between cholesterol levels and pollutant exposure in rural individuals living in Eastern Kentucky (Appalachia) who are undergoing a diet and lifestyle-based intervention to reduce cardiometabolic disease risk.  Preliminarly results show significant positive associations between multiple PFAS and cholesterol levels, but these associations are dependent on efficacy of the intervention.

We hope you can join us for this interesting seminar!  

For more information about this event, please contact Julie O'Connor at 3135775600 or