News

Student Achievements

Fall 2019 Newsletter

  • May 27, 2020

    Seshadri Ramkumar Explains Differences Among Types of Face Masks

     

    Rigorous Testing Is Needed, But There's Reason to Believe Nonwoven Cotton Might Enhance Filtration Capability of Common Face Covers

     

    When it comes to blocking coughs and sneezes, any mask is better than none. But as the COVID-19 pandemic has illustrated so vividly, not all masks are created equal.

     

    At a time when the most effective masks continue to be reserved for the most critical personnel, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends everyone wear cloth face coverings in public settings, while also practicing 6-feet social distancing.

     

    In a recently released 45-second video, U.S. Surgeon General Dr. Jerome Adams demonstrated how to make a multi-layered face cover from an old t-shirt and two rubber bands. Meanwhile, the Internet is flush with merchants selling face covers of all descriptions, some of which include a pocket to hold various types of filters.

     

    In the midst of all of this, one Texas Tech University (TTU) scientist has spent much of his 20-year career studying personal protective equipment (PPE)—particularly nonwoven cotton substrates—and their effectiveness against a host of environmental and human-health challenges.

     

    Seshadri Ramkumar, professor and supervisor of the Chemical Countermeasures and Advanced Materials Laboratory at TTU's Institute of Environmental and Human Health (TIEHH), developed the chemical decontamination wipe Fibertect®, which has tested highly effective in adsorbing certain chemical warfare agents, toxic industrial chemicals and pesticides.

     

    During the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, his work proved the effectiveness of natural cotton as a crude oil absorbent. A more recent breakthrough is his work with Ph.D. student Lihua Lou in developing a nanofiber filter that, when combined with visible light, can remove toxic dye pollutants from wastewater safer, cheaper and easier than traditional methods.

     

    Ramkumar explains the efficiency of any barrier-type mask—one that covers the nose and mouth—depends on its filtration capability, its fit and its form or comfort; and they all fall into four general categories:

    Full Story

     

  • May 20, 2020

    Community Spirit: 60-plus Volunteers Sign Up to Support Covid-19 Testing

    ANSWERING THE CALL

    On Feb. 28, Texas Tech University's Biological Threat Research Laboratory (BTRL), part of The Institute of Environmental and Human Health (TIEHH), alerted the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Texas Department of State Health Services that it was ready to receive and test samples from across its 67-country coverage area. The BTRL's five-person team could test 84 samples a day.

     

    The Biological Threat Research Laboratory is part of The Institute of Environmental and Human Health.

    After the lab's first positive result on March 17, it became apparent that case numbers could increase quickly, and it needed to be able to test more samples each day. With coordination through the Texas Tech Office of Research & Innovation, a collaborative partnership between Texas Tech and the Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center (TTUHSC) was established to increase the capacity of the BTRL to test for coronavirus. In late March, the call went out for volunteers to join the Texas Tech/TTUHSC COVID-19 Testing Team.

     

    The response has been phenomenal.

    Full Story

  • May 20, 2020

    PROFESSOR: NONWOVEN COTTON CAN MAKE BETTER FACE MASKS

     

    The use of face masks has become commonplace for many people as more businesses reopen, and one professor says some masks work better than others.

     

    Wednesday, May 20th 2020, 12:43 AM CDT by Tori McGee

  • May 14, 2020

    International Collaboration Develops Innovative Face Mask for COVID-19

    By Dr. Seshadri Ramkumar | May 14, 2020

     

    As industries in India and other economics slowly resume their manufacturing activities, social distancing and strict hygiene practices have become a new normal. This has enhanced the need for hand sanitizers, gloves and face masks. Industries are looking for innovative ways to survive by repurposing their capacities that can cater to meeting the COVID-19 situation.

     

    Arrow Brogues, Pvt. Ltd., a shoe manufacturer in Ranipet, India, is collaborating with the Nonwovens and Advanced Laboratory at Texas Tech University and Chennai-based WellGro United to develop filtering and fashionable face masks.

     

    Arrow Brogues has been manufacturing shoes for 20 years, catering to Indian and foreign markets such as Italy, Germany and United Kingdom. The new masks, which use nonwoven cotton as the core filter substrate, are released under brand name H.F. Journey. The design expertise of Arrow Brogues has been valuable in the development of H.F. Journey masks, and WellGro United supplies the core filter substrate for the masks.

     

    “We understand the need for protection technologies and hence sought the collaboration with Texas Tech University in developing masks that have functionality and fashion sense,” stated Velayutham Pandy, managing director of Arrow Brogues.

     

    The project showcases timely innovation, as it has repurposed the cotton nonwoven technology to develop filter substrate. “This is a milestone for WellGro United, as it has created a new vertical in our line of products which find timely use,” stated Nambi Srinivasan, vice president marketing of WellGro United.

     

    It is pleasing to report cotton is finding new applications in the current COVID-19 scenario, enabling a few timely innovations.

     

  • April 30, 2020

    Lubbock Groups Develop New Face Mask with Cotton Nonwoven Filter

    By Dr. Seshadri Ramkumar | April 30, 2020

    A prototype of the new face cover developed with cotton nonwoven as core filter substrate.

     

    “In the time of stress, it is necessary to collaborate and find the right partners to develop tools to race against COVID-19,” stated Ronald Kendall, Jr., founder and president of E Innovate.

     

    Prior to COVID-19, the medical and first responder community widely used N95 and surgical masks. However, due to the severity of transmission and to support social distancing, face covers made from fabrics have evolved. Yet, depending on the structure and the material makeup, its ability to filter may vary. That need led to the collaboration to improve the filtration capability of common face covers.

     

    Full Story

  • April 27, 2020

    TTU Laboratory decontaminating masks for safe reuse

    LUBBOCK, Texas — On Friday, the Texas Tech Biological Threat Research Laboratory, part of The Institute of Environmental and Human Health, announced that the facility will be decontaminating personal protective equipment (PPE) for safe use. The laboratory has partnered with the Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center to make this possible.

     

    Dr. Steve Presley, the chairman and professor with the Department of Environmental Toxicology at TIEHH said the service will be provided to healthcare professionals, first responders and detention centers.

     

    Full Story

  • April 27, 2020

  • April 22, 2020

    Texas Tech Laboratory Was State's First to Offer Coronavirus Testing

     

    Two decades ago, Texas Tech created The Institute of Environmental and Human Health. In the age of COVID-19, that investment is paying dividends.

    Nearly 23 years ago, the Texas Tech University System's Board of Regents unanimously approved the creation of The Institute of Environmental and Human Health (TIEHH), a new institute to assess toxic chemical impacts on the physical and human environment. Since then, its growth has been exponential.

     

    Proposed as a joint venture between Texas Tech University and the Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center (TTUHSC), TIEHH fused the resources of Texas Tech's academic campus and its premier medical facility to address environmental and human health issues from a multidisciplinary perspective.

     

    Full Story

  • April 21, 2020

    TTU Biological Threat Research Lab Closely Monitors COVID-19

     

    When it was realized that COVID-19 was rapidly spreading around the globe and a pandemic was imminent, the TTU Biological Threat Research Lab team at Texas Tech University immediately began preparing to test samples from patients suspected to be infected with COVID-19. The TTU team was the first LRN lab in Texas to begin testing suspected COVID-19 cases in late February. On March 17, they detected and reported the first COVID-19 case in Lubbock.

     

    As the number of COVID-19 cases in the United States and particularly in Texas increased, it was necessary to significantly increase the capacity of the lab to test high numbers of clinical samples every day. With coordination through the TTU Vice President for Research and Innovation, a collaborative partnership between TTU and TTUHSC was established to increase the capacity of the TTU Biological Threat Research Lab to test for COVID-19.

     

    Through the TTU-TTUHSC partnership, more than 30 volunteers from both campuses have joined the original five person TTU Biological Threat Research Lab team to create the TTU-TTUHSC COVID-19 Testing Team. Volunteers to assist in this project include TTU and TTUHSC faculty members, research staff, graduate students, as well as citizens that have no affiliation with either university but want to help “flatten the curve” in our community.

     

    As both an academic research lab and a public health diagnostic testing lab, the TTU Biological Threat Research Lab has been extensively involved in detecting, monitoring, and researching outbreaks of infectious diseases of humans and animals occurring throughout Texas since 2003. The public health diagnostic testing capability of the TTU Biological Threat Research Lab is designated as a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Laboratory Response Network (LRN) facility. The expertise and technical diagnostic capabilities available in the TTU Biological Threat Research Lab work directly with the Texas Department of State Health Services to provide support to city and county public health agencies and other healthcare providers within a 67 county region. The TTU Biological Threat Research Lab team has provided public health emergency diagnostic testing for numerous actual and potential disease outbreaks over the years, including chikungunya, dengue fever, Ebola, seasonal influenza, West Nile fever, Zika fever, and now COVID-19.

  • March 18, 2020

    Decontamination Wipe From Texas Tech Could Help Coronavirus Cleanup Efforts

     

    FiberTect's structure, with its activated carbon core, can wipe the bodily fluids that transmit viruses.

     

    A decontamination wipe invented by a Texas Tech University researcher to clean up toxic agents also could clean up bodily fluids contaminated with the coronavirus.

     

    "It is widely used as the primary dry decontamination method in hospitals and ambulances," said Corey Collings, a training specialist for First Line Technology, which markets FiberTectTM. "Hospitals use it in bulk and in rolls, and ambulances use it in a kit called the FastGrab to do immediate decontamination of patients contaminated with a wide variety of substances."

    Full Story

    Ramkumar: Face covers and the fight against COVID-19Full Story

    Exploring Cotton’s Value in Face Covers to Fight COVID-19 Full Story

    Our view: Research, innovation keys in fighting pandemic Full Story

  • February 20, 20

    CrimeSceneInvestigatorEDU.org Names the Texas Tech University MS in Forensic Science Among the Most Affordable Forensics Master’s Programs of 2020-21

     

    In a field that relies on professionals with exceptional lab skills and a dedication to uncovering useful information from evidence collected at crime scenes, a master’s degree can impart a unique level of skill and expertise.

     

    Similarly, CrimeSceneInvestigatorEDU.org can be relied on to bring that same kind of dedication to providing forensic investigators and laboratory scientists with the resources they need for career preparation and advancement. That’s why we wanted to make it easier to find the most affordable, high-quality master’s programs available in the field.

     

    We took on the task of reviewing the tuition rates of every single forensic science master’s program available at accredited institutions across the U.S. When we came to the Texas Tech University Department of Environmental Toxicology, we knew right away we were looking at a winner.

     

    With a tuition rate that comes in nearly $2,400 below the state average for similar programs, the Texas Tech University MS in Forensic Science easily earns its place on our list of the Most Affordable Master’s Degrees in Forensic Science for 2020-21!

     

  • December 10, 2019

    Dr. Ramkumar Appointed Deputy Editorship of International Journal

     

    Seshadri Ramkumar has been appointed as the Deputy Editor for Textile Progress, published by London based Taylor & Francis Group for The Textile Institute (TI). TI is an international professional association in the fibers to fashion field founded in 1910, based in Manchester, United Kingdom.

     

  • December 5, 2019

    Dr. Seshadri Ramkumar Awarded At The Celebration Of Faculty Excellence In Research, Scholarship And Creative Activity

     

    Dr. Seshadri Ramkumar was recognized by TTU for achieving national/international recognition in the 2018-19 academic year in an event on November 7th, Celebrating Faculty Excellence In Research, Scholarship and Creative Activity.

     

    President Lawrence Schovanec presented certificate to him recognizing his accomplishments.

     

  • November, 2019

    Phil Smith Appointed Associate Editor of Environmental Pollution

    November 2019

     

    Dr. Phil Smith has been appointed associate editor of Environmental Pollution, an international scientific journal published by Elsevier (United Kingdom). Environmental Pollution publishes original, novel research on all issues relevant to the nature, distribution and ecological effects of all types and forms of chemical pollutants in air, soil and water. Dr. Smith concurrently serves as associate editor for the Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry’s flagship journal, Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry.

  • November 19, 2019

    Prof’s Research Journey:

    Lab to Reality

     

    TTU’s Office of Communications and Marketing, released a news article on the journey of cotton-based oil absorbent from its conception to market place.

     

    Full Story

     

  • October 30, 2019

    Dr. Steve Presley Presented 2019 SOVE Distinguished Achievement Award in Puerto Rico

    Dr. Steve Presley was presented the “2019 Distinguished Achievement Award for Outstanding Achievement in Vector Ecology Science” at the 49th Annual Conference of Society for Vector Ecology in San Juan, Puerto Rico during 22-26 September. The annual award recognizes a U.S. or international scientist that has contributed significantly to advancing the knowledge base regarding arthropod vectored disease ecology.

     

    Drs. Steve Peper and Steve Presley organized and co-chaired a symposium entitled “Healthcare, Public Health, and Vector Control: The Disconnect” at the 49th Annual Conference of Society for Vector Ecology in San Juan, Puerto Rico during 22-26 September. Symposium speakers included physicians, veterinarians, public health administrators, vector control professionals, vector-borne infectious disease researchers, and non-governmental aid organizations from the United States and Brazil.

  • October 25, 2019

    Can the Bobwhite Quail Be Saved?

    BY WES FERGUSON, OCT 24, 2019

     

    Once widely hunted in Texas, the beloved game birds have been dwindling in recent decades. But a West Texas hunter and professor believes he’s found a way to save them.

     

    Full Story

     

    Left: A bobwhite quail at Texas Tech’s Wildlife Toxicology Laboratory, in Lubbock.

    Right: Medicated grub in the QuailSafe feeder at Kendall’s ranch near the town of Jayton.

    Photographs by Trevor Paulhus

  • October 11, 2019

    First case of St. Louis Encephalitis Virus confirmed in Lubbock mosquito sample

    LUBBOCK, Texas — On Thursday, the City of Lubbock Health Department confirmed the first case of St. Louis Encephalitis (SLE) this year, found in a sample of mosquitoes collected in Lubbock.

     

    Professor and chair with the Texas Tech Department of Environmental Toxicology, Dr. Steven Presley, said his department tests mosquitoes for West Nile Virus and St. Louis Encephalitis.

     

    “A couple of weeks ago we tested a pool and they were positive for both West Nile Virus and St. Louis Encephalitis Virus,” Presley said.

     

    Presley said the mosquitoes with the viral diseases were found in west Lubbock.

     

    “We’ve had that unusual period of rainfall and hot weather again,” Presley said. “So mosquito numbers have boomed.”

    Full Story

  • September 16, 2019

    He will provide advice

    on technical issues

    underlying National

    Ambient Air Quality

    Standards.

     

    Ron Kendall, a professor of environmental toxicology and head of the Wildlife Toxicology Laboratory at The Institute of Environmental and Human Health at Texas Tech University, was appointed today (Sept. 13) to serve on the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) Clean Air Scientific Advisory Committee. His term begins immediately and lasts until Sept. 30, 2022.

    Full Story

  • August 27, 2019

    Researchers Develop Better Method to Remove Toxic Dyes From Wastewater

     

    Lihou Lou and Seshadri Ramkumar from Texas Tech Environmental Toxicology and researchers from TTU Engineering have developed functionalized nanowebs, which effectively degrade toxic dyes in visible light. The research published online August 23 will appear as a cover page article in the forthcoming issue of Particle & Particle Systems Characterization.

     

    Full Story

    Related News Story:

    The Indian Textile Journal Report

  • August 9, 2019

    Annual Convention of the American Psychological Association

    Dr. Megan Thoen and FSCI program alumna, Madeline Scotch, presented a poster (“Analysis of Submission to Destination Zero: Wellness Program of Law Enforcement Agencies”) at the Annual Convention of the American Psychological Association on August 9, 2019, in Chicago, IL. Non-presenting co-authors included FSCI students Kate Ganley, Preston McCullough, and Connor Harwood, FSCI alumna Kierstyn Evans, and Psychological Sciences undergraduate Nghi “Skyler” Tran.

  • May 3, 2019

    Dr. Prada-Tiedemann awarded the 2019 Outstanding Woman Leader (OWL) Award

    Each year, WT-AWIS awards the Champion of Women (C.O.W.) Award and Outstanding Woman Leader (O.W.L.) Award.

    These prestigious awards are given by WT-AWIS members only, during the spring semester of each year, and are for the purpose of recognizing men (Champion of Women Award, COW) and women (Outstanding Woman Leader Award, OWL) who are active supporters of women in science, and who have demonstrated their commitment to the education, training and mentoring of women, as well as to overall gender equity in science. Male TTU System faculty and staff are eligible for C.O.W. nominations; female TTU System faculty and staff members are eligible for O.W.L. nominations; and members of the community are also eligible for nomination.

    Full Story

  • May 2, 2019

    Researchers are using West Texas cotton for biodegradable towel designed to clean up oil spills

    LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) - Two young entrepreneurs have brought an idea out of the labs and into U.S. Markets that is the first of its kind.

     

    “Towelie,” a simple name for a seemingly simple product with the potential to clean up a complicated environmental and ecological problem: oil spills in bodies of water.

     

    It’s an affordable, nonwoven fabric material that’s durable and biodegradable with the ability to hold up to 15 times its weight in oil. It floats on water, all without leaving micro-plastic residue.

     

    Ronald Kendall Jr. and Luke Kitten have been working on the “legwork” for this project since high school with Texas Tech professor Seshadri Ramkumar, Ph.D., FTA (Hon.) who works in the Nonwovens and Advanced Materials Laboratory/Department of Environmental Toxicology.

    Full Story

  • April 17, 2019

    Dr. Jaclyn Canas-Carrell was Awarded the 2019 President’s Excellence in Research Professorship.

     

    This is a prestigious and significant award recognizing Jaclyn’s important contributions and future commitment to research excellence. Congratulations!

  • April 10, 2019

    Dr. Steve Presley was recognized by TTU with the 2019 President’s Excellence in Engaged Scholarship

     

    for his engaged scholarship activities with public health communities. TTU is emphasizing the importance of this new aspect of academic activity and encouraging faculty/staff and students to consider this as greater outreach effort.

  • March 15, 2019

    Dr. Megan Thoen Presents Research at Annual Meeting of the American Psychology-Law Society

    Dr. Megan Thoen, TTU McNair Scholar Genesis Hernandez, and Ms. Ashley Davis of the Lubbock County Criminal District Attorney’s Office presented their research on March 15 entitled, “What is Taking So Long: Competency Process of One Southwestern County,” at the annual meeting of the American Psychology-Law Society, Portland, OR.

  • March 6, 2019

    TIEHH Researcher Develops New Method to Detect Whale Hormones

    GLENYS YOUNG MARCH 6, 2019

    Céline Godard-Codding is studying the critically endangered western gray whale species.

     

    Semiarid Lubbock, Texas, sits 3,200 feet above sea level and more than 500 miles from the nearest ocean. To those outside of Lubbock, it's known for cotton and blinding dust storms. It's perhaps the last place one would expect to find cutting-edge research in the study of marine life.

     

    Yet, through The Institute of Environmental and Human Health (TIEHH) at Texas Tech University, that's exactly what's happening out here on the dusty plains of West Texas.

    Céline Godard-Codding, associate chair of the Department of Environmental Toxicology and an associate professor of endangered species toxicology at TIEHH, is leading a worldwide research effort to study the health of the western gray whale, a critically endangered species found only along Russia's Pacific coast, and has developed a new method that could impact her entire field along the way.

    Full Story

  • February 28, 2019

    Dr. Ramkumar Receives 2018 Sir J. C. Bose Memorial Science Award

    February 28, 2019

    In a gathering of about 1000 people (college students, faculty, general public and visitors), that included people from India, USA and Italy, Dr. Ramkumar was given Sir J. C. Bose Memorial Science Award for the year 2018, n Coimbatore, India. The award function attracted public media as well. The group of award winners were from varied fields of science such as alternative medicine, bio imaging, astro sciences, engineering from India, Italy and USA.

     

  • February 27, 2019

    Low levels of arsenic may cause kidney disease, but existing drug could become key treatment

    February 27, 2019

     

    A study in which researchers exposed human kidney epithelial cells to different concentrations of arsenic suggests that long-term exposure — even at the low levels currently allowed by the Environmental Protection Agency — can increase the risk of kidney fibrosis; but the same study also revealed a potential treatment for overexposure.

     

    While arsenic exposure has been linked to chronic kidney disease in a number of studies, a similar relationship between arsenic exposure and kidney fibrosis is not yet understood, according to co-authors Kamaleshwar P. Singh, PhD, associate professor in the department of environmental toxicology at the Texas Tech University’s Institute of Environmental and Human Health, and Yu-Wei Chang, a PhD candidate and research assistant.

     

    Full Story

     

  • February 27, 2019

    Seshadri Ramkumar, a professor in the Department of Environmental Toxicology, lead investigator in the Nonwovens and Advanced Materials Laboratory and inventor of the FiberTect decontamination wipe, recently gave an invited plenary presentation on “Technical Textiles” during the 74th annual meeting of the Textile Association, the world's leading professional society for fiber and materials scientists, in Coimbatore, India. His presentation was subsequently rated the best paper presentation made during the conference.

     

  • January 18, 2019

    Texas Tech researchers making strides to a

    universal flu vaccine

     

    By:  Rache Ahdey - KLBK NEWS

    LUBBOCK, Texas - While the flu vaccine has traditionally been administered through an injection on an annual basis, Texas Tech researchers are making strides to change that with a universal flu vaccine.

     

    Dr. Harvinder Gill, associate professor in chemical engineering, and Dr. Steve Presley, professor of environmental toxicology, teamed up to develop a vaccine that would address major issues facing the current vaccinations—annual injections, minimal coverage of flu strains and required refrigeration.

     

    "The ability to make a vaccine that has universal protection, it basically means that you don't have to get a flu shot every year,” Gill said. "If the vaccine works, then you can say that we took a shot and it's going to keep me in protection against the flu virus year after year, after year."

     

    Full Story From KLBK NEWSEverything Lubbock

  • January 15, 2019

    Two Texas Tech researchers working toward universal flu vaccine

     

    LUBBOCK, Texas (NEWS RELEASE) - The following is a news release from Texas Tech University:

     

    The flu is nothing to sneeze at.

     

    The Spanish flu pandemic of 1918 killed an estimated 50 million people worldwide; by comparison, about 16 million people died in World War I. And flu pandemics aren't just a thing of the past. Despite advances in both technology and vaccines, the 2009 swine flu pandemic caught the world unprepared and an estimated 150,000 to 500,000 people died.

     

    ...Thanks to a five-year, $3.46 million grant from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, part of the National Institutes of Health, two Texas Tech University researchers already widely known for their work in immunotherapy and infectious diseases are trying to solve this. Harvinder Gill, the Whitacre Endowed Chair in Science and Engineering and an associate professor in the Department of Chemical Engineering within the Edward E. Whitacre Jr. College of Engineering, and Steve Presley, a professor and chairman of the Department of Environmental Toxicology within the College of Arts & Sciences, have teamed up to develop a universal flu vaccine.

    Full Story

  • May 4, 2020

    The cover image created by Lihua Lou et al., shows poly(vinyl alcohol) nanofiber prepared by electrospinning method. The inserted drawings represent changes in units (sub sections) within nanofiber webs under external load based on the actual tensile stress‐strain curves of nanofiber webs, as hypothesized by the authors. This study also analyzes the effect of various testing parameters, as well as the interactions on the tensile properties on nanofiber webs. Results from this study, enable a comprehensive understanding of each testing parameter and their interaction effects and help with the standardization of tenacity evaluation of nanofibers.

     

    Tensile testing and fracture mechanism analysis of polyvinyl alcohol nanofibrous webs

     

    Lihua Lou  Weijie Yu  Ronald J. Kendall  Ernest Smith  Seshadri S. Ramkumar

     

    First published: 11 March 2020 https://doi.org/10.1002/app.49213

     

    Funding information: Texas Tech University; Office of International Affairs

     

    Abstract

     

    A tensile properties testing study was conducted to understand the influence of thickness, cross‐head speed (speed of testing), gauge length (GL; specimen test length), and sample shape on important tensile properties of polyvinyl alcohol (PVA) nanofiber webs. The effects of each testing parameter on load at break, extension at break, Young's modulus, and tensile stress–strain curve of PVA nanofiber webs are analyzed. The Welch two sample t‐tests show the significant difference among tested data. Using interaction plots, two‐way analysis of variance, and margin mean plots, the interaction effects among testing parameters have been analyzed. Of all the factors, cross‐head speed, the interaction among GL, and sample thickness (GL: Thickness) and the interaction among GL, testing speed and sample thickness (GL: Speed: Thickness) have significant influence on the tensile properties of PVA nanofiber webs. Moreover, the hypothesized model of mechanism of tensile strain–stress curve of PVA nanofiber webs has been proposed. Based on the model, the tensile strain–stress curve can be split into three stages: linear elastic, partial break up, and complete breakage. This study will provide a better understanding of tensile testing parameters' effects and their interaction effects on the tensile properties of nanowebs.

     

  • September 19, 2019

  • October 28, 2019

  • October, 2019

  • October 2019

  • August 28, 2019

  • July 12, 2019

  • June 18, 2019

  • April 29, 2019

    Congratulations to

    Kalin Skinner

    on receiving the Graduate Student Research Support Award,

    Spring 2019!

  • April 26, 2019

  • March 26, 2019

    Naveen Kumar

    Congratulations to Naveen Kumar and Narayan Acharya

     for receiving 1st and 2nd place in the Environmental Sciences section at the 18th Annual Graduate Student Research Poster Competition!

    Narayan Acharya

  • March 15, 2019

    ENTX Forensic Science students traveled to the 71st Annual Meeting of the American Academy of Forensic Sciences in Baltimore, Maryland. The American Academy of Forensic Sciences is a multi-disciplinary professional organization that provides leadership to advance science and its application to the legal system. The objectives of the Academy are to promote professionalism, integrity, competency, education, foster research, improve practice, and encourage collaboration in the forensic sciences.

     

    The studies presented were as follows (students from left to right on picture):

    1. Katie Blanar, BS & Paola Prada-Tiedemann, PhD: poster presentation entitled “The Decomposition Clock: A Characterization of Insect Volatile Odor Profiles”

    2. Shawna Gallegos, BS, Paola Prada-Tiedemann, PhD & Kendra Rumbaugh, PhD: poster presentation entitled “A Forensic Volatolomic Approach: A Step Forward in the Characterization of Wound Pathogens”

    3. Kierstyn Evans, BS & Megan Thoen, PhD: poster presentation entitled “Determining the Confidence of Fingerprint Examiners at Various Steps in the Analysis, Comparison, Evaluation-Verification (ACE-V) Method”

    4. Kiana Holbrook, BS & Paola Prada-Tiedemann, PhD: poster presentation entitled “Blood Decomposition Odor Profiling: An Instrumental and Field Application Tool in Forensic Detection”

     

     

  • March 6, 2019

  • February 6, 2019

  • December 6, 2018

  • October 24, 2018

  • September 19, 2018

  • September 19, 2018

    Katy Shaw awarded 3rd place on best PhD platform at SETAC

    Congratulations to Katy Shaw for 3rd place on best PhD platform at SETAC in Sacramento, California! Katy’s presentation was titled, “Concentrations and risks of metal contamination from lead shot in a Hawaiian green sea turtle (Chelonia mydas) foraging aggregation and their habitat”.

  • August 10, 2018

    • August 10, 2018: Dr. Megan Thoen and her team were awarded best poster for Division 18 (Psychologists in Public Service) at the annual convention of the American Psychological Association in San Francisco, CA. Their poster was entitled, "Assisting their Own: Police Utilized Suicide Prevention & Wellness Programs." Congrats to Dr. Th  oen, Ethan Dodson (FSCI), Dr. Brandy Pina-Watson (Psychological Sciences), Dr. Elizabeth Trejos-Castillo (Human Development and Family Studies), Gabriela Manzo (Psychological Sciences), Preston McCullough (FSCI), and Esteisy Escalera (Psychological Sciences)!

  • July 29 - August 4, 2018

    • July 29-August 4, 2018: Dr. Prada-Tiedemann's research group gave two poster presentations at the 103rd International Association of Identification (IAI) Forensic Educational Conference. The IAI Conference is the largest in the world for Forensic and Crime Scene Professionals and offers a full week of scientific, technical and operational lectures, as well as hands-on workshops focused on a wide variety of physical evidence topics. Topics include Crime Scene Investigation and Processing, Photography, latent print examination, Footwear and Tire Track, and Bloodstain Pattern Evidence, Biometrics, and many other types of impression and identification evidence disciplines. The student presentations were:

      "Insights on Condom Substrates: Fingerprint Development as a Function of Temperature Variation" by Amanda Patrick, BS, Amanda Soucey, BS & P.A. Prada-Tiedemann PhD, International Association of Identification (IAI), San Antonio, TX. July 2018.

      "Rapid Generation of Potential Explosive Training Materials in Biological Detection: An Additional Tool in Explosive Crime Scene Response" by Thy Nguyen BS, Nathaniel Hall, PhD. & P.A. Prada-Tiedemann PhD. International Association of Identification (IAI), San Antonio, TX. July 2018.

  • May 18, 2018

    Congratulations to our Spring 2018 graduates: Lauren Alejandro, Ethan Dodson, Silas Kemboi, Kashmiere McGee, Valaree Meili, and Jaxon Ward. We wish you the best of luck!

     

  • May 10, 2018

    2018 Graduate School Poster Competition Winners Announced

    Forensic science Master’s students, Ms. Kashmiere McGee and Mr. Ethan Dodson, as well as Environmental Toxicology Ph.D. student, Olushola Awayemi, all three placed first in this year’s Graduate Poster Competition.

     

    Ms. Kashmiere McGee won first place in the Human Sciences section.

     

    Mr. Ethan Dodson won first place in the Psychological Sciences section.

     

    Mr. Olushola Awayemi won first place in the Environmental Science Section.

  • May 8, 2018

    Two of our students placed first place in their sections at the recent TTU Graduate Student Research Poster Competition. Ms. Kashmiere McGee won first place in the human sciences section, and Mr. Ethan Dodson won first place in the psychological sciences section. Congrats, Kash and Ethan!

  • May 1, 2018

  • April 30, 2018: THESIS PROSPECTUS DEFENSE

    Natalie Gomez will present her thesis prospectus entitled "Detection of Pharmaceuticals and Personal Care Products (PPCPs) on Dry Blood Cloth Using Liquid Chromatography-Mass Spectrometry (LC-MS)" on May 7, 2018 at the Institute for Forensic Sciences, room 121 at 3:30 PM. Thesis committee includes Todd Anderson, Ph.D. (Chair), Paola Prada, Ph.D., and Megan Thoen, Ph.D.

  • April 20, 2018

  • April 20, 2018: THESIS PROSPECTUS DEFENSES

    • Kiana Holbrook will present her thesis prospectus entitled "The Instrumental Evaluation of Blood Decomposition Volatiles on Various Substrates and their Relationship to Presumptive Test Methods" on April 24, 2018 at the Institute for Forensic Sciences, room 121 at 9:30 AM. Thesis committee includes Paola Prada, Ph.D. (Chair), Jaclyn Canas, Ph.D., and Steve Presley, Ph.D.
    • Jennifer Raymer will present her thesis prospectus entitled "Evaluation of Decomposition Residual Odor Using Sus Scrofa as a Sampling Model" on May 1, 2018 at the Institute for Forensic Sciences, room 121 at 10:00 AM. Thesis committee includes Paola Prada, Ph.D. (Chair), Nathaniel Hall, Ph.D., and Steve Presley, Ph.D.
    • Katie Blanar will present her thesis prospectus entitled "The Use of Entomological Samples as Potential Odor Biomarker for Decomposition Stages" on May 2, 2018 at the Institute for Forensic Sciences, room 121 at 10:00 AM. Thesis committee includes Paola Prada, Ph.D. (Chair), Celine Goddard, Ph.D., and Alexandra Protopropova, Ph.D.
    • Kierstyn Evans will present her thesis prospectus entitled "Determining the Confidence of Fingerprint Examiners at Various Steps in the ACE-V Method" on May 7, 2018 at the Institute for Forensic Sciences, room 121 at 9:00 AM. Thesis committee includes Megan Thoen, Ph.D. (Chair), Paola Prada, Ph.D., and Miranda Scolari, Ph.D.
    • Preston McCullough will present his thesis prospectus entitled "An Investigation into Jail Programming Participation and Recidivism" on May 7, 2018 in Psychological Sciences, room 301 at 1:00 PM. Thesis committee includes Megan Thoen, Ph.D. (Chair), Robert Morgan, Ph.D., Adam Schmidt, Ph.D., and Kathy Sperry, Ph.D.
  • April 7, 2018

  • April 2, 2018: INTERNSHIP PAPER PRESENTATIONS

    Valaree Meili will be presenting her internhip paper entitled, "Time to Step Up: Lubbock County Detention Center working towards strengthening rehabilitation programs and lower recidivism rates," on April 6, 2018 at the Institute for Forensic Sciences, room 121 at 1:00 PM. Paper committee includes Kathy Sperry, Ph.D. (Chair), Paola Prada-Tiedemann, Ph.D., and Col. Dave Lewis, M.A.

     

    Ethan Dodson will be presenting his internship paper entitled, "Religious Material Coordination in Incarceration," on April 6, 2018 at the Institute for Forensic Sciences, room 121 at 3:00 PM. Paper committee includes Megan Thoen, Ph.D. (Chair), John Howe, Ph.D., and Kathy Sperry, Ph.D.

     

    Everyone is welcome to join!

  • March 2018

  • March 22, 2018: THESIS DEFENSE.

    •  Kashmiere McGee will be defending her thesis entitled "Human Skeletal Remains: Perspectives for Narcotrafficking Group Identifications through Modus Operandi from San Joaquin de Flores, Heredia, Costa Rica" on March 30, 2018 at the Institute for Forensic Sciences, room 121 at 10:00 AM. Thesis committee includes Paola Prada-Tiedemann, Ph.D. (Chair), Kathy Sperry, Ph.D., and Georgina Pacheco, M.S.
  • March 8, 2018: THESIS DEFENSES

    Lauren Alejandro will be defending her thesis entitled "The Evaluation of Canine Training Aids Over Time on Working Dog Performance" on March 22, 2018 at the Institute for Forensic Sciences, room 121 at 10:00 AM. Thesis committee includes Paola Prada-Tiedemann, Ph.D. (Chair), Nathaniel Hall, Ph.D., and Megan Thoen, Ph.D.


    Jaxon Ward will be defending his thesis entitled "Weather and Its Effects on Homicide Rate and Injury Type in Harris County, Texas" on March 21, 2018 at the Institute for Forensic Sciences, room 121 at 9:30 AM. Thesis committee includes Kathy Sperry, Ph.D. (Chair), Paola Prada-Tiedemann, Ph.D., and Megan Thoen, Ph.D.

    Everyone is welcome to join!

     

  • February 22-23, 2018

     Three of our students presented their work at the American Academy of Forensic Sciences annual meeting.



    "Human Skeletal Evidence: Perspectives for Narcotrafficking Group Identifications Through Modus Operandi From the Medico-Legal Department, San Joaquin de Flores, Heredia, Costa Rica" - Kashmiere N. McGee, B.A., Georgina Pacheco, M.S., Paola A. Prada-Tiedemann, Ph.D., and Kathy Sperry, Ph.D.


    "Narcotic Age and Working Dog Performance: Instrumental Perspectives on Training Aid Lifespan" - Lauren Alejandro, B.S., and Paola A. Prada-Tiedemann, Ph.D.




    "Mental Wellness and Suicide Prevention Programming Among United States Police Agencies" - Ethan Dodson, B.A., Megan A. Thoen, Ph.D., Brandy Pina-Watson, Ph.D., and Elizabeth Trejos-Castillo, Ph.D.

  • January 26, 2018: THESIS PROSPECTUS PRESENTATION.

     Thy Nguyen will be presenting her thesis prospectus on February 1, 2018, in the IFS classroom (Rm. 121) at 3:00p. Her thesis is entitled, "A Novel Method for the Creation of Canine Explosive Detection Training Aids Using an Olfactometer." Her thesis committee includes Paola Prada-Tiedemann, Ph.D. (chair), Nathaniel Hall, Ph.D., and Kathy Sperry, Ph.D. Everyone is welcome to attend!

  • January 1, 2018

    Students Lauren Alejandro and Kashmiere McGee had posters accepted for the Young Scientist Forum poster session for the upcoming American Academy of Forensic Sciences conference in Seattle, WA. Congratulations!

     

    "Narcotic Age and Working Dog Performance: Instrumental Perspectives on Training Aid Lifespan" - Lauren Alejandro, B.S., and Paola A. Prada-Tiedemann, Ph.D.

     

    "Human Skeletal Evidence: Perspectives for Narcotrafficking Group Identifications Through Modus Operandi From the Medico-Legal Department, San Joaquin de Flores, Heredia, Costa Rica" - Kashmiere N. McGee, B.A., Georgina Pacheco, M.S., Paola A. Prada-Tiedemann, Ph.D., and Kathy Sperry, Ph.D.


  • November 15, 2017: THESIS DEFENSE

    Silas Kemboi will be defending his thesis entitled "Hand Odor Volatiles and Drug Abuse: A Pilot Study using a Chemical Dependent Target Group" on December 1, 2017 at the Institute for Forensic Sciences, room 121 at 9:30 AM. Thesis committee includes Paola Prada-Tiedemann, Ph.D. (Chair), Spencer Bradshaw, Ph.D., and Megan Thoen, Ph.D. Everyone is welcome to join!

  • October 10, 2017

    Two forensic science students and faculty had their poster presentation submissions accepted for the upcoming American Academy of Forensic Sciences conference in Seattle, WA. Congratulations!

    • "Narcotic Age and Working Dog Performance: Instrumental Perspectives on Training Aid Lifespan" by Lauren Alejandro and Dr. Paola Prada

    • "Mental Wellness and Suicide Prevention Programming Among United States Police Agencies" by Ethan Dodson, Dr. Megan Thoen, Dr. Brandy Pina-Watson (TTU Dept. of Psychological Sciences), and Elizabeth Trejos-Castillo (TTU Dept. of Human Development and Family Studies)

     

  • September 19, 2017

    Dr. Prada-Tiedemann and three members from her research group successfully presented research posters summarizing current thesis projects at the 6th International Conference on Forensic Research and Technology in Houston, Texas. Dr. Prada-Tiedemann was also the plenary guest speaker giving a presentation entitled: "Forensic Odorology: A silent and forgotten trace evidence source in criminal investigations". Student poster presentations included:

    •  "Evaluation of K9 narcotic training aid age: an insight into the "instrumental sniff" of common drugs" by Lauren Alejandro
    • "Forensic Advantages of Safe Sex: Odor Profiling Condom Brands using HS-SPME-GC/MS" by Amanda Patrick
    • "Hand Odor Volatiles and Drug Abuse: A Pilot Study using a Chemical Dependent Target Group" by Silas Kemboi

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The Department of Environmental Toxicology (ENTX) is the academic home for the core faculty of The Institute of Environmental and Human Health (TIEHH) and the Institute for Forensic Science (IFS) at Texas Tech University. TIEHH and IFS provide faculty and graduate students opportunities for multidisciplinary research and scholarly engagement related to environmental, forensic and human health sciences.

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