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Journey of Biomarker from Discovery to Qualification

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  • Alison Harrill, Ph.D.

    Alison Harrill is leading efforts toward developing models that incorporate host genetic susceptibility into risk assessment. Genetics plays a key role in metabolism and response to drugs and chemicals, yet the systematic study of population dynamics in toxicity responses is in its infancy and understanding these dynamics may have important implications for human health risk assessment. Her current research includes investigation of population dynamics in response to drugs and chemicals, identification of gene variants that influence toxicity responses, and study of different transcriptional alterations that occur in affected tissues of sensitive versus resistant individuals. These efforts will take aim at reducing uncertainty when extrapolating risk from animal species to human populations.

    Prior to joining the NTP, Harrill was an Assistant Professor at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences and, prior to her academic tenure, Head of the Translational Pharmacogenetics Laboratory at the Hamner Institutes for Health Sciences. In these roles, she worked to qualify population-based rodent models, such as Diversity Outbred mice, for pharmaceutical safety testing and identification of pharmacogenetics toxicity risk factors that might enable precision medicine strategies. In addition, she has led safety biomarker discovery and qualification efforts that translated from animal species to clinical populations, with particular emphasis on liver and kidney injury biomarkers.

    Harrill received her Ph.D. in Toxicology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and her B.S. in Genetic Engineering from Cedar Crest College (Allentown, PA). She currently serves as a co-chair on the Application of Genomics for Risk Assessment Committee of ILSI/HESI, a member of the Contemporary Concepts in Toxicology Committee within the Society of Toxicology, and an executive committee member within the Toxicology Division of the American Society for Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics. She has been honored to receive many awards for her research, most recently: The Best Paper Published in Toxicological Sciences Award (2016) and the Burroughs Wellcome Fund Innovation in Regulatory Sciences Award (2013-2016).

February 11, 2021
Thu 12:30 PM EST

Duration 1H 30M

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