Contact Us

Katrina E. Varner

My primary research focus combines my past work experience and has evolved into method development and evaluation of monitoring parameters of contaminants and hazardous waste.  Method and monitoring development involve the detection, speciation, and identification of organometallics and emerging contaminants in various media. This includes the development of screening techniques for groundwater and soil.  Research is carried out with the development of methods via liquid chromatography/mass spectrometry (LC/MS), capillary electrophoresis-mass spectrometry (CE-MS) and ion trap mass spectrometry hyphenated technologies (electrospray-quadrupole-ion trap). My goal is to advance LC/MS techniques for the characterization and remediation of emerging contaminants, including nanomaterials as they apply to various media including water, soil, and tissue (environmental) in daily exposure and effect on animals and humans.

Biographical Information

Name: Katrina E. Varner
Title:   Environmental Research Scientist

Contact Info:

Environmental Sciences Division / Characterization and Monitoring Branch
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
P.O. Box 93478
Las Vegas, Nevada 89193

Phone: 702-798-2645


  • B.S., Cellular and Developmental Biology, minor Social Science, 1987, University of Nevada-Reno

Professional Experience

  • Environmental Research Scientist, US EPA, NERL, 1990 to present
  • Organic Chemist, FiberChem, Inc. 1989-1990
  • Chemist I, Las Vegas Valley Water District, 1987-1989

Awards and Honors:

  • Certificate of Commendation, Senator Harry Reid, 2007
  • American Chemical Society Letter of Appreciation, 2006
  • NERL-LV Award of Excellence, S-Award, 2002-2005
  • USEPA, ORD Diversity Award, Team Award for NERL-LV Awards Board, 2002
  • EMSL-LV EEO Coordinator 1994-1995
  • Women in Science and Engineering Program Manager, EMSL-LV, 1991-1995, Outstanding Chapter in 1993                   
  • Federal Women's Program Manager, EMSL-LV, 1992-1995

Publications and Presentations (1999 - Present) 
/ (These are from ORD Science Inventory) 

Select Publications:


Brumley, W., Varner, K.E., Riddick, L.A. "Partial Characterization of Biosolids: Lipophilic Organic Components," Environmental Science: An Indian Journal, 3:3, 2008

Select Presentations:


Varner, K. Nanotechnology: A Proactive Approach for Benign Development, Environmental Nanotechnology Gordon Conference, Stowe, Vermont, June 2-7, 2013


Varner, K., Nanomaterials: The Latest Emerging Environmental contaminant Identification and Measurement, American International Chemical Engineers Annual Conference, Minneapolis, Minnesota, October 12, 2011

Varner, K., Nanomaterials as Personal Care Products: The Latest Emerging Environmental Contaminant Identification and Measurement, American Chemical Society Meeting, Anaheim, California, March 31, 2011


Varner, K., Nanosenors for Fullerenes and Silver Nanoparticles, Society of Toxicology & Environmental Chemistry, Portland, Oregon, November 7-11, 2010

Varner, K., Mass Sensitive Fullerene Nanosensor, American Chemical Society Meeting, San Francisco, California, March 21-25, 2010
Varner, K., Sadik, O., Kikandi, S., The Latest Emerging Contaminant:  Nanomaterials as Personal Care Products and Their Environmental Impact, Society for Environmental Toxicology and Analytical Chemistry 30th Meeting, New Orleans, Louisiana, November 19-23, 2009

Varner, K., Sadik, O., Kikandi, S., Fullerene Nanoparticle Counter Using Quartz Crystal Microbalance, EPA nano STAR Grantee Meeting, Las Vegas, Nevada, November 9-11, 2009

Wunmi Sadik, Kikandi S., Wang.C., Varner. E. K. Sensors as tools for quantitation and cytotoxicity studies of engineered nanomaterials, NEMC San Antonio, Texas, August 10-14, 2009

Sadik, O., Kikandi, S., Wang, Q., Varner, K., Novel Sensor for the Identification and Quanitation of Engineered Nanomaterials, Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry, Gotebog, Sweden, May 31-June 4, 2009

Bradford, D.F., N.G. Tallent-Halsell, E.M. Heithmar, G.M. Momplaisir, C.G. Rosal, M.S. Nash, K.E. Varner, and L.A. Riddick. Temporal and Spatial Patterns of Airborne Contaminants Relative to Amphibian Population in Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks, California. Presented at Sierra Nevada - Southern Cascades Contaminants Workshop, Three Rivers, CA, April 08 - 09, 2009.

Kikandi, S., Sadik, O., Varner, K., Novel Sensor for Quantitation and Cytotoxicity of Selected Nanomaterials, 237th American Chemical Society National Meeting, Salt Lake City, Utah, March 22-26, 2009

Schumacher, B.A. a., J.H..Zimmerman, C.R. Sibert, K.E.  varner, and L.A. Riddick. Macro- and Micro-Purge Soil Gas Sampling Methods for the Collection of Contaminated Vapors. Presented at National Forum on Vapor Intrusion, Philadelphia, PA, January 12 - 13, 2009


Varner, K., Kikandi, S., Sadik, O. Novel Electrochemical Sensors for Detecting, Characterizing, Quantifying & Monitoring Engineered Materials, ORD Nanotechnology Researchers Meeting, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Office of Research and Development, National Exposure Research Laboratory. Research Triangle Park, NC. December 17019, 2008

Gaglione, A., Varner, K., Schumacher, B. Heithmar, E., 2008. “Sampling and Analysis of Nanomaterials in the Environment: A State-of-the-Science Review” American Chemical Society (ACS) 42nd Western Regional Meeting, Las Vegas, NV  September 23-27, 2008
Varner, K., Kopsick, D., Bearden, J. “ETV/ESTE Radio Frequency Identification Project” ETV/SBIR Outreach Workshop, Dallas, TX, 2007
Varner, K.E., “EPA & RFID: Into the Future,” EPCglobal US Chemical Industry Summit, Houston, TX, 2006
Varner, K., Momplaisir, G.M., Tallent-Halsell, N., Bradford, D., Ferguson, P., Riddick, L., Rosal, C., Heithmar, E. "The Challenges of Acquiring Large Volume Lake Water Samples for Ultra-Trace Level Analysis" On-Site: The Lab Comes to the Field, 11th Annual Conference, Scottsdale, Arizona, 2003
Varner, K.E.  "Dibutyltin Measured in Brain using µ-Liquid Chromatography Electrospray/Mass Spectrometry," Western Regional ACS Pacific Conference on Chemistry and Spectroscopy, Ontario, California, 1999
Varner, K.E. Expedited Site Assessment Methods for Underground Storage Tank Facilities Workshop. Martinsburg, West Virginia and Kansas City, Missouri, 1996
Varner, K.E.  "Dibutyltin Measured in Brain using µ-Liquid Chromatography Electrospray/Mass Spectrometry," Western Regional ACS Pacific Conference on Chemistry and Spectroscopy, Ontario, California, 1999
Varner, K.E. Field Screening Methods for BTEX, US EPA Technical Support Project Meeting / Engineering and Ground Water Forum. Las Vegas, Nevada, 1995

Varner, K.E., “Field Screening Methods for BTEX” USEPA Engineering & Ground Water Forum, Dallas, TX, 1995
Varner, K.E. Monitoring Hydrocarbons at UST Sites. US EPA Region 9 All-States Meeting, Lake Tahoe, California, 1994
Varner, K.E. Site Characterization of Hazardous Waste Sites, US EPA, ORD, EMSL-LV sponsored National Workshops. Atlanta, Georgia and Worcester, Massachusetts, 1991

Jump to main content.