Roberta F. White, PhD
Professor
Boston University School of Public Health
Dept of Environmental Health

PhD, Wayne State University
MA, Wayne State University



Roberta F. White is a trans-disciplinary scientist whose research focuses on the effects of exposure to industrial pollutants on brain function. Initially trained as a clinical psychologist/neuropsychologist, her work employs cognitive and behavioral test measures and neuroimaging techniques to identify pollutant effects on the central nervous system. Combining the fields of public health, behavioral neuroscience, and epidemiology as well as clinical neuropsychology, she has explored the effects of occupational lead and solvent exposures on cognitive and affective expressions of brain function; elucidated prenatal effects of exposure to methylmercury and polychlorinated biphenyls on cognitive function and neuropsychological outcomes; identified chemical exposures that are associated with the occurrence of Gulf War Illness (GWI) following the Persian Gulf War in 1991, and uncovered cognitive and neuroimaging evidence of structural brain damage associated with GWI and sarin exposure in the GW veteran population. Her work has had significant public health impact in setting standards for occupational exposure to lead, environmental exposure to methylmercury in utero, and acceptance of GWI as a physical illness related to chemical exposures in theatre. She has written extensively on the clinical correlates of encephalopathies caused by exposure to chemical pollutants and co-wrote the World Health Organization criteria for diagnosis of solvent encephalopathy that are used internationally.

Dr. White’s research and clinical career have led to leadership positions in the field of public health and psychology. She has been Chair of the Department of Environmental Health since 2003, enhancing the department’s stature as a leader in community environmental health, environmental epidemiology and toxicology. She is Associate Dean for Research at Boston University School of Public Health, where she oversees the research portfolio, which has grown in size and funding diversification under her leadership. In addition, she is Scientific Director of the Congressionally mandated Research Advisory Committee on Gulf War Illness, which advises the Veterans Administration on its GWI research portfolio. She has testified before Congress and the Institute of Medicine many times in her areas of research expertise, particularly GWI. Prior to beginning her tenure as Chair of Environmental Health, she ran the neuropsychology programs at BUSM and VA Boston Medical Center, overseeing clinical work as well as APA-approved doctoral and post-doctoral training programs in clinical neuropsychology. She also directed a VA-funded center on Environmental Hazards through two funding cycles before leaving the VA to work fulltime at BUSPH.

Professor
Boston University School of Medicine
Department of Neurology


Chair of Environmental Health
Boston University School of Public Health
Department of Environmental Health


Mentor for Graduate Medical Students
Boston University School of Medicine, Division of Graduate Medical Sciences



2006 Fellow, American Psychological Association, Division 12
1998 Collegium Ramazzini: Fellow
1993 Fellow, American Psychological Association, Division 40
1985-1988 Career Development Award. National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health
1975-1976 Administration on Aging. U.S. Department of Health, Education, and Welfare Doctoral Fellowship
1972-1973 Wayne State University Graduate Division Tuition Scholarship
1971-1972 Public Health Service Fellowship


Prenatal Exposure to Polyfluoralkyl Chemicals (PFCs) and Child Growth Development
06/11/2015 - 05/31/2017 (PI)
University of California, Berkeley NIH NIEHS
5R01ES021447-05

Personnel Agreement for Research Services of Peter Rivoira
10/09/2012 - 09/29/2016 (PI)
Department of Defense/U.S. Army Research Institute of Environmental Medicine

Personnel Agreement for Research Services of Megan Yee
10/21/2013 - 04/29/2016 (PI of Sub-Project / SP)
PI: Margaret A. Naeser, PhD
VA Boston Healthcare System

Research Advisory Committee on Gulf War Veterans' Illnesses at Boston University
04/01/2011 - 09/30/2015 (PI)
Department of Veterans Administration, Bedford

Personnel agreement for research services of Megan Yee
10/01/2013 - 08/31/2015 (PI)
VA Boston Healthcare System

ANAM4 manuscript preperation
01/01/2013 - 06/30/2013 (PI)
Henry M. Jackson Foundation DOD Army Med Resrch

Contract with Boston University (School of Public Health) for Services in Support of Several USARIEM Neuropsychological and Neurophysiological Research Studies
07/01/2012 - 09/30/2012 (PI)
Department of Defense/Army Natick Soldier Systems Center

Research Advisory Committee on Gulf War Veterans' Illnesses at Boston University
04/01/2011 - 09/30/2011 (PI)
Department of Veterans Administration, Bedford

Personnel Agreement for Research Services of Kristen Smith
07/01/2009 - 06/30/2010 (PI)
Department of Defense/Army

Prenatal Pesticide Exposure in South Africa: CNS Effects
09/30/2003 - 07/31/2006 (PI)
NIH/National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences
3 R21 ES13109 02S1

Showing 10 of 12 results. Show All Results


Publications listed below are automatically derived from MEDLINE/PubMed and other sources, which might result in incorrect or missing publications. Faculty can login to make corrections and additions.

  1. Janulewicz PA, Krengel MH, Maule A, White RF, Cirillo J, Sisson E, Heeren T, Sullivan K. Neuropsychological characteristics of Gulf War illness: A meta-analysis. PLoS One. 2017; 12(5):e0177121.View Related Profiles. PMID: 28520755.
  2. White RF, Krengel M. Cognitive disorders in women. 2017.
  3. White RF, Krengel M. The SAGE Encyclopedia of Psychology and Gender. Cognitive disorders in men. Sage. NY. 2017.
  4. Butler LJ, Janulewicz PA, Carwile JL, White RF, Winter MR, Aschengrau A. Childhood and adolescent fish consumption and adult neuropsychological performance: An analysis from the Cape Cod Health Study. Neurotoxicol Teratol. 2017 Mar 03.View Related Profiles. PMID: 28263856; DOI: 10.1016/j.ntt.2017.03.001;.
  5. Krengel M, White RF. Behavioral Emergencies. Neurological disorders and symptoms associated with psychologic/behavioral problems. Oxford University Press. NY. 2016; 417-425.
  6. Harris MH, Gold DR, Rifas-Shiman SL, Melly SJ, Zanobetti A, Coull BA, Schwartz JD, Gryparis A, Kloog I, Koutrakis P, Bellinger DC, Belfort MB, Webster TF, White RF, Sagiv SK, Oken E. Prenatal and childhood traffic-related air pollution exposure and childhood executive function and behavior. Neurotoxicol Teratol. 2016 Sep - Oct; 57:60-70.View Related Profiles. PMID: 27350569; DOI: 10.1016/j.ntt.2016.06.008;.
  7. Aschengrau A, Janulewicz PA, White RF, Vieira VM, Gallagher LG, Getz KD, Webster TF, Ozonoff DM. Long-term Neurotoxic Effects of Early-life Exposure to Tetrachloroethylene-contaminated Drinking Water. Ann Glob Health. 2016 Jan-Feb; 82(1):169-79.View Related Profiles. PMID: 27325074; PMCID: PMC4916338; DOI: 10.1016/j.aogh.2016.01.013;.
  8. White RF, Steele L, O'Callaghan JP, Sullivan K, Binns JH, Golomb BA, Bloom FE, Bunker JA, Crawford F, Graves JC, Hardie A, Klimas N, Knox M, Meggs WJ, Melling J, Philbert MA, Grashow R. Recent research on Gulf War illness and other health problems in veterans of the 1991 Gulf War: Effects of toxicant exposures during deployment. Cortex. 2016 Jan; 74:449-75.View Related Profiles. PMID: 26493934; PMCID: PMC4724528; DOI: 10.1016/j.cortex.2015.08.022;.
  9. Harris MH, Gold DR, Rifas-Shiman SL, Melly SJ, Zanobetti A, Coull BA, Schwartz JD, Gryparis A, Kloog I, Koutrakis P, Bellinger DC, White RF, Sagiv SK, Oken E. Prenatal and Childhood Traffic-Related Pollution Exposure and Childhood Cognition in the Project Viva Cohort (Massachusetts, USA). Environ Health Perspect. 2015 Oct; 123(10):1072-8.View Related Profiles. PMID: 25839914; PMCID: PMC4590752; DOI: 10.1289/ehp.1408803;.
  10. White RF. . What is life?. Bostonia. 2013; p. 42.
Showing 10 of 146 results. Show More

This graph shows the total number of publications by year, by first, middle/unknown, or last author.

Bar chart showing 143 publications over 35 distinct years, with a maximum of 12 publications in 2003

YearPublications
19821
19832
19843
19854
19861
19873
19883
19893
19903
19911
19925
19938
19945
19956
19969
19977
19985
19996
20003
20017
20025
200312
20043
20054
20065
20073
20084
20092
20103
20113
20123
20132
20152
20163
20174
Contact for Mentoring:


715 Albany St Talbot Building
Boston MA 02118
Google Map


White's Networks
Click the "See All" links for more information and interactive visualizations
Concepts
_
Co-Authors
_
Similar People
_
Same Department