Baylor prof working to prevent harmful chemicals from ever being created
Plenty of people care about the environment and the quality of life for humans and animals, but not many have the opportunity to directly impact on the future of our planet. Baylor University’s Dr. Bryan Brooks, professor of environmental science and biomedical studies, is one of the lucky few.
As part of the Molecular Design Research Network, Brooks and his Baylor team have begun a four-year, $4.4 million project designing chemicals that are less harmful to the planet. Unlike most environmental efforts that seek to solve current issues, this project’s purpose is to prevent future health hazards by developing tools that will help molecule designers find out what substances could be harmful and keep risks at a minimum.
Funded by the National Science Foundation and the Environmental Protection Agency, Brooks’ research team includes a fellow Baylor professor, Dr. Spencer Williams; Baylor students and staff; and researchers from Yale, George Washington University and the University of Washington.
The project will also give back to the educational community. Coordinated by Melissa Mullins, MS ’95, environmental educator in the Center for Reservoir and Aquatic Systems Research, Baylor researchers will work with groups of biology, chemistry and environmental science high school teachers at the Baylor Research and Innovation Collaborative. The teachers will perform experiments in a formal lab setting and create activities for their students.
Sic ‘em, Dr. Brooks, Dr. Williams and Ms. Mullins!