Case Studies

Cases are contributed by course participants in Metals in Medicine and the Environment, University of Virginia, Fall Semester 2007 and 2008.

Fall 2008

Weston Andrews, Biology (3rd year undergrad): lead and Alzheimers disease, positron emission tomography (PEG) imaging

Joseph Houck, Chemistry (1st year grad): vanadium, arsenic

Evan Joslin, Chemistry (1st year grad): thallium, lewisite

Morgan Moyer, Chemistry (1st year grad): hard metal disease, peripheral neuropathy

Anders Nelson, Neuroscience (3rd year undergrad): aluminum and Alzheimers disease, metals in seafood

Allan Prior, Chemistry (1st year grad): photodynamic therapy, MRI

Vijay Ramdeen, Chemistry (1st year grad): coal, cigarettes

Rebecca Schwantes, Chemistry/Math (4th year undergrad): ewaste, mountain top removal, nuclear energy

Laura Strausberg, Chemistry (1st year grad): mercury and hat making

Fall 2007

James Corson, Psychology/Neuroscience (3rd year grad): manganese neurotoxicity, zinc toxicity and cerebral ischemia, nuclear weapons and radiation exposure

Sara Dudgeon, Neuroscience (2nd year grad): iron and pregnancy, tattoos, copper mining

James East, Chemistry (2nd year grad): molybdenum, bismuth, cisplatin

Megan Huffman, Chemistry (2nd year grad): cremation, jewelry contact allergy, gold salts and rheumatoid arthritis

Sarah Kleinfeld, Religious Studies/Bioethics (4th year undergrad): ayurvedic medicine, thimerosal and childhood vaccines, health effects of chernobyl

Noah Prescott, Chemistry (4th year undergrad): silver, technetium, phytoremediation

Jarrod Rasnake, Chemistry (4th year undergrad): cadmium poisoning and itai itai disease, chelation therapy, photoacoustic imaging and gold nanoshells

Rebecca Reddaway, Psychology/Neuroscience (3rd year grad): nickel and hybrid cars, copper and wound healing, lead toxicity and age

Jessica Sheehan, Mechanical Engineering (2nd year grad): lead in chocolate, contaminants in breast milk, makeup

Tyler St. Clair, Chemistry (1st year grad): tin antifouling paints, titanium dioxide sunscreens, magnetic iron oxide particles


Web Design and Course Instructor

Cassandra Fraser, Professor, UVA Department of Chemistry (Fraser Lab)


Homepage Image

Photograph of Two Indeterminate Lines by Bernar Venet, 2003, taken by Cassandra Fraser at Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park, Grand Rapids, Michigan.



We are grateful to the Center for Global Health at the University of Virginia for support in the form of a mini-grant through the Framework Program for Global Health at the Fogarty International Center at the National Institutes of Health to develop the Metals in Medicine and the Environment course (Chem 812/536). Special thanks is extended to Rebecca Dillingham, UVA Framework Program Director and Joy Boissevain, Program Administrator. We also thank the National Science Foundation for support for our research and synergistic educational programs such as this.