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The Joint U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and Department of Homeland Security Conference on Real-World Applications and Solutions for Microbial Risk Assessment

Bethesda North Marriott Hotel and Conference Center
5701 Marinelli Road
North Bethesda, MD  20852

April 8 - 10, 2008


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This conference will provide a forum to discuss real-world applications and proposed approaches to the methodological challenges in the search for improved methods to assess risk of exposure to biological agents after a deliberate, natural, or accidental contamination event. The overall objective is to provide enhanced tools and approaches to better identify the causative agent, assess degree of exposure and resultant health impacts, mitigate resultant consequences to the degree possible, and accomplish cost-effective cleanup and recovery.

Purpose of the Meeting:

  1. To facilitate collaboration and cooperation among scientists and policymakers from academia, private–sector organizations, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and other vested federal agencies, Department of Defense (DOD), states, local agencies, and stakeholders in efforts to advance the Microbial Risk Assessment (MRA) field of study.

  2. To provide an opportunity for consortium members of CAMRA (EPA/DHS Sponsored University-based Center for Advancing Microbial Risk Assessment) to present the results of their research.

  3. To assist EPA and DHS in identifying needed research, methods, or technologies important to addressing decisions and/or policy making issues associated with the assessment of the risk of exposure to biological contaminants of concern.

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

8:00 – 9:00 a.m. Registration and Poster Setup
Session I:  Context and Overview
9:00 – 9:10 a.m. Welcome and Goals for the Conference
Irwin Baumel, EPA, Office of Research and Development (ORD), National Center for Environmental Research (NCER)
9:10 – 9:30 a.m. Overview of MRA Activities in the EPAs Office of Research and Development (2 pp, 83 K)
George Gray, Assistant Administrator, EPA, ORD
9:30 – 9:50 a.m. Overview of DHS Science and Technology Directorate
Beth George, DHS
9:50 – 10:10 a.m. Overview of MRA Activities in the EPA’s National Homeland Security Research Center (3 pp, 279 K)
Jon Herrmann, Director, EPA, ORD, National Homeland Security Research Center (NHSRC)
10:10 – 10:30 a.m. Weapon Potential of a Microbe (6 pp, 269 K)
Keynote Speaker:  Arturo Casadevall, Albert Einstein College of Medicine
10:30 – 11:00 a.m. Break

Session II:   Microbial Risk Assessment (MRA) Challenges

11:00 – 11:20 a.m. Introduction and Overall Challenges to MRA (4 pp, 463 K)
Tonya Nichols, EPA, ORD, NHSRC
11:20 – 11:40 a.m. Interagency MRA Guidelines (2 pp, 40 K)
Mike Broder, EPA, Risk Assessment Forum
11:40 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. DHS Centers Addressing Biological Threats(2 pp, 130 K)
Elizabeth Filauri, DHS
12:00 – 1:00 p.m. Lunch (on your own)
Session III:  Mission-Directed Applications of MRA
1:00 – 1:20 p.m. MRA Activities Within the S&T Division
Beth George, DHS
1:20 – 1:40 p.m. MRA Activities and Application Within the Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) (5 pp, 1.0 MB)
Janell Kause, U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS)
1:40 – 2:00 p.m. MRA Activities Within the FDA (5 pp, 276 K)
Sherri Dennis, Food and Drug Administration (FDA)
2:00 – 2:20 p.m. MRA Activities Within Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)(3 pp, 48 K)
Rebecca Noe, CDC
2:20 – 2:40 p.m. MRA and Development of Cleanup Goals (3 pp, 142 K)
Deborah McKean, EPA, ORD, NHSRC
2:40 – 3:20 p.m. Break
3:20 – 3:40 p.m. Office of Water (OW) Research to Advance MRA Capabilities to Assess Risk of Exposure to Waterborne Pathogens (3 pp, 47 K)
Steve Schaub, EPA, Office of Water (OW)
3:40 – 4:00 p.m. MRA Activities for the Development of Drinking Water Standards (4 pp, 418 K)
Nick Ashbolt, EPA, ORD, National Exposure Research Laboratory (NERL)
4:00 – 4:15 p.m. Center for Advancing Microbial Risk Assessment (CAMRA) Overview and Introduction to Poster and Technical Sessions
Chuck Haas, CAMRA
4:15 – 6:00 p.m. Poster Presentations
Posters will be available all 3 days!

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Technical Program – Data Needs and Research in MRA

Session I:  Biological Hazard ID

8:30 – 8:50 a.m. Challenges in Biological Hazard ID (4 pp, 142 K)
Alan Lindquist, EPA, ORD, NHSRC
8:50 – 9:10 a.m. Evaluation of Quantum Dots as Surrogates for Pathogens
Syed Hashsham, CAMRA
9:10 – 9:30 a.m. Standardization of LRN Assays for Biothreat Agent ID (5 pp, 275 K)
Stephen Morse, CDC
9:30 – 9:50 a.m. Bioforensic Analysis:  Obtaining a Biological Fingerprint
Sonia Hunt, Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI)
9:50 – 10:20 a.m. Break

Session II:  Challenges in Exposure Assessment

10:20 – 10:40 a.m. How Sampling Methods Influence Overall Exposure Assessment (4 pp, 252 K)
Dino Mattorano, EPA, National Dredging Team (NDT)
10:40 – 11:00 a.m. Factors Affecting the Persistence of Pathogens on Fomites (30 pp, 1 MB)
Ryan Sinclair, CAMRA
11:00 – 11:20 a.m. An Emerging Science of Environmental Infection Transmission System (4 pp, 201 K)
Jim Koopman, CAMRA
11:20 – 11:40  a.m. New Approaches to Microbial Exposure Assessment (2 pp, 82 K)
Al Dufour, EPA, NERL
11:40 – 12:00  p.m. Background Studies Underscore the Challenge of Designing Assays to Support Biosurveillance (40 pp, 3.3 MB)
Norman Doggett, Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL)
12:00 p.m. – 1:00 p.m. Lunch (on your own)
1:00 – 1:20 p.m. Improvement of Water Quality Modeling for MRA (41 pp, 8.2 MB)
Chris Choi, CAMRA
1:20 – 1:40 p.m. TEVA Modeling for Water Distribution Systems (20 pp, 416 K)
Regan Murray, EPA, ORD, NHSRC

Session III:  Bridging the Gaps in Dose Response

1:40 – 2:00 p.m. Challenges in Dose-Response Assessments (3 pp, 94 K)
Jeff Swartout, EPA, ORD, NCEA
2:00 – 2:20 p.m. New Dose-Response Models for Key Class A Agents (4 pp, 172 K)
Chuck Hass, CAMRA
2:20 – 2:40 p.m. Effect of Ongoing Exposure Dynamics in Dose-Response Relationships (3 pp, 134 K)
Joe Eisenberg, CAMRA
2:40 – 3:20 p.m. Break
3:20 – 3:40 p.m. PB/BK Modeling of Low-Dose Infectivity for Inhalational Anthrax (5 pp, 227 K)
Brad Gutting, Naval Surface Warfare Center (NSWC), Dahlgren
3:40 – 4:00 p.m. Old Data Provides New Dose-Response Curves for Anthrax
Brandolyn Thran, United States Army Center for Health Promotion and Preventive Medicine (USACHPPM)
4:00 – 4:20 p.m. Listeria Dose-Response Assessment (6 pp, 185 K)
Heejeong Latimer, USDA, FSIS

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Continuation of the Technical Program

Session IV:   Risk Characterization

8:30 – 9:00 a.m. Decision Making Under Uncertainty (3 pp, 160 K)
George Gray, Assistant Administrator, EPA, ORD
9:00 – 9:20 a.m. Probabilistic Modeling for Biothreat Assessments (5 pp, 307 K)
Steve Bennett, DHS
9:20 – 9:40 a.m. Risk Characterization and Applications (2 pp, 462 K)
Carl Schroeder, USDA, FSIS
9:40 – 10:00 a.m. Risk Estimates for Tuberculosis
Tim Bartrand, CAMRA
10:00 – 10:30 a.m. Break

Session V:   Risk Perception and Risk Communication

10:30 – 10:50 a.m. Challenges in Risk Communication (5 pp, 67 K)
Rebecca Parkin, George Washington University
10:50 – 11:10 a.m. Risk Communication Planning for the Aftermath of a Plague Bioattack         
Lis Casman, CAMRA

Session VI:   Panel on Future Direction

11:10 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. Discussion of Conference and Way Forward
Stephen Morse, CDC
Chuck Haas, CAMRA
Alan Lindquist, EPA
Steve Schaub EPA
Steve Bennett, DHS
Carl Schroeder, USDA
12:00 – 12:15 p.m. Closing Remarks
Irwin Baumel, EPA, ORD, NCER
12:15 p.m. Adjournment

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