MDI Biological Laboratory

Archive for: All About Arsenic

Students Wonder, “What’s In Your Water?”

More than 20 students from Conners Emerson School handed out water test kits at the Bar Harbor polls on election day. The eighth graders gave out more than 100 kits to local residents, allowing them to test their homes’ well water for arsenic and other trace minerals. This citizen science collaboration with the Town of…

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“All About Arsenic” Gains Steam

Jane Disney, Ph.D., staff, and students from local schools are launching this month the latest canvassing effort to collect water samples from residential wells, to better assess risks of arsenic exposure in Bar Harbor. It’s part of the ongoing All About Arsenic citizen-science project Disney leads at MDIBL, funded by an NIH Science Education Partnership…

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Funding Helps Expand Arsenic Awareness Program

Groundwater contaminated with naturally occurring arsenic is one of the most pressing public health issues in Maine and New Hampshire. Since 2016, associate professor of environmental health, Jane Disney, Ph.D., has focused on understanding how much arsenic is in our environment by engaging students as citizen scientists in collecting well water for arsenic analysis. This…

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Not Just a Drop in the Bucket

Arsenic is a naturally occurring element in many residential wells in Maine. At elevated levels, it poses a potentially significant health threat, causing cancer, heart disease, immune dysfunction, and developmental delays in children. MDI Biological Laboratory’s Jane Disney, Ph.D. has been engaging researchers, teachers, and students in Maine and New Hampshire in well water monitoring…

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Citizen Scientists Support Doctoral Research

Arsenic, lead, and uranium, naturally occurring contaminants in some groundwater, are not uncommon in New England, where significant portions of the population rely on wells for drinking water. Long-term or acute exposure to these contaminants can lead to multiple types of cancer, heart disease, diabetes, and more. Federal and state guidelines regulate the maximum contaminant…

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MDI Biological Laboratory Gets Children Involved Through Citizen Science

  So far, schools in the program have collected 1,200 samples and 15% of them have had higher than recommended levels of arsenic (the Environmental Protection Agency’s safety level is 10 parts per billion).  “All About Arsenic” aims to build scientific literacy and interest, and to show school-aged children that as citizen scientists they can…

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Anecdata.org: Citizen Science keeps us connected while we’re apart

MDI Biological Laboratory has moved quickly to continue providing opportunities for educational experiences and public engagement in scientific research. Anecdata.org, our online citizen science platform, is just one way we’re increasing our connectivity with like-minded people while we all need to stay apart to slow the spread of COVID-19. Based out of our Community Lab,…

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Troubled Water

Jane E. Disney, Ph.D., MDI Biological Laboratory senior staff scientist and director of education, and Anna Farrell, program coordinator for the institution’s Community Environmental Health Laboratory, were interviewed for the investigative documentary, “Troubled Water,” on environmental threats to the nation’s water supply.

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