Wendy Heiger-Bernays, PhD

Wendy Heiger-Bernays is a clinical professor in the Department of Environmental Health at the BU School of Public Health where she applies her training in molecular toxicology to practical questions about the impact of industrial chemicals, consumer products and pharmaceuticals in water and waste streams on people’s health. Her career objective is to decrease health risks to impacted populations from exposures to environmental stressors. Her recent work focuses on the toxicology and health risks of PFAS chemicals and polychlorinated biphenyls.

Dr. Heiger-Bernays' work focuses on technology and information transfer of the science to multiple audiences, including environmental regulatory and health agencies as well as with advocacy groups and community groups. Heiger-Bernays’ overall objective is to engage communities in their understanding and mitigation of environmental health risks.

She currently serves as a member of the Massachusetts DEP Waste Site Advisory Committee and the Science Advisory Board for the Toxics Use Reduction Institute and is Chair of her local board of health. In 2015-2016, she was a AAAS Science and Technology Fellow hosted in the Office of Science Coordination and Policy at the US EPA, working in the Endocrine Disrupting Screening Program. Dr. Heiger-Bernays serves as President of the International Society for Children's Health and Environment.

AAAS Fellowship
09/01/2015 - 08/31/2016 (PI)
American Association for the Advancement of Science

Hair Care Products: A Survey of Toxicological Assessment. A Community-Based Project In Support of ACE and Roxbury Hair Salons
05/01/1999 - 04/30/2000 (PI)
DHHS PHS (Public Health Contracts)


Yr Title Project-Sub Proj Pubs

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.

iCite Analysis       Copy PMIDs To Clipboard

  1. Haley BM, Sun Y, Jagai JS, Leibler JH, Fulweiler R, Ashmore J, Wellenius GA, Heiger-Bernays W. Association between Combined Sewer Overflow Events and Gastrointestinal Illness in Massachusetts Municipalities with and without River-Sourced Drinking Water, 2014-2019. Environ Health Perspect. 2024 May; 132(5):57008.View Related Profiles. PMID: 38775485; PMCID: PMC11110654; DOI: 10.1289/EHP14213;
  2. Hall SM, Tikku V, Heiger-Bernays WJ. Potential Policy and Community Implications of Equitable Organic Waste, Compost, and Urban Agricultural Systems in the United States. Environ Health Perspect. 2023 Nov; 131(11):115001. PMID: 37966215; PMCID: PMC10648754; DOI: 10.1289/EHP12921;
  3. Friedman A, Boselli E, Ogneva-Himmelberger Y, Heiger-Bernays W, Brochu P, Burgess M, Schildroth S, Denehy A, Downs T, Papautsky I, Clauss Henn B. Manganese in residential drinking water from a community-initiated case study in Massachusetts. J Expo Sci Environ Epidemiol. 2024 Jan; 34(1):58-67.View Related Profiles. PMID: 37301899; PMCID: PMC10727146; DOI: 10.1038/s41370-023-00563-9;
  4. Pennoyer EH, Heiger-Bernays W, Aro R, Yeung LWY, Schlezinger JJ, Webster TF. Unknown Organofluorine Mixtures in U.S. Adult Serum:Contribution from Pharmaceuticals? Toxics. 2023 Apr 27; 11(5).View Related Profiles. PMID: 37235230; PMCID: PMC10221009; DOI: 10.3390/toxics11050416;
  5. Woodruff TJ, Rayasam SDG, Axelrad DA, Koman PD, Chartres N, Bennett DH, Birnbaum LS, Brown P, Carignan CC, Cooper C, Cranor CF, Diamond ML, Franjevic S, Gartner EC, Hattis D, Hauser R, Heiger-Bernays W, Joglekar R, Lam J, Levy JI, MacRoy PM, Maffini MV, Marquez EC, Morello-Frosch R, Nachman KE, Nielsen GH, Oksas C, Abrahamsson DP, Patisaul HB, Patton S, Robinson JF, Rodgers KM, Rossi MS, Rudel RA, Sass JB, Sathyanarayana S, Schettler T, Shaffer RM, Shamasunder B, Shepard PM, Shrader-Frechette K, Solomon GM, Subra WA, Vandenberg LN, Varshavsky JR, White RF, Zarker K, Zeise L. A science-based agenda for health-protective chemical assessments and decisions: overview and consensus statement. Environ Health. 2023 Jan 12; 21(Suppl 1):132.View Related Profiles. PMID: 36635734; PMCID: PMC9835243; DOI: 10.1186/s12940-022-00930-3;
  6. Nielsen GH, Heiger-Bernays WJ, Levy JI, White RF, Axelrad DA, Lam J, Chartres N, Abrahamsson DP, Rayasam SDG, Shaffer RM, Zeise L, Woodruff TJ, Ginsberg GL. Application of probabilistic methods to address variability and uncertainty in estimating risks for non-cancer health effects. Environ Health. 2023 Jan 12; 21(Suppl 1):129.View Related Profiles. PMID: 36635712; PMCID: PMC9835218; DOI: 10.1186/s12940-022-00918-z;
  7. Post GB, Birnbaum LS, DeWitt JC, Goeden H, Heiger-Bernays WJ, Schlezinger JJ. Letter to the editors regarding "The conundrum of the PFOA human half-life, an international collaboration". Regul Toxicol Pharmacol. 2022 Oct; 134:105240.View Related Profiles. PMID: 35973622; DOI: 10.1016/j.yrtph.2022.105240;
  8. Carlson JM, Janulewicz PA, Kleinstreuer NC, Heiger-Bernays W. Impact of High-Throughput Model Parameterization and Data Uncertainty on Thyroid-Based Toxicological Estimates for Pesticide Chemicals. Environ Sci Technol. 2022 May 03; 56(9):5620-5631.View Related Profiles. PMID: 35446564; PMCID: PMC9070357; DOI: 10.1021/acs.est.1c07143;
  9. Hammel E, Webster TF, Gurney R, Heiger-Bernays W. Implications of PFAS definitions using fluorinated pharmaceuticals. iScience. 2022 Apr 15; 25(4):104020.View Related Profiles. PMID: 35313699; PMCID: PMC8933701; DOI: 10.1016/j.isci.2022.104020;
  10. Friedman A, Bauer JA, Austin C, Downs TJ, Tripodis Y, Heiger-Bernays W, White RF, Arora M, Claus Henn B. Multiple metals in children's deciduous teeth: results from a community-initiated pilot study. J Expo Sci Environ Epidemiol. 2022 May; 32(3):408-417.View Related Profiles. PMID: 34750512; PMCID: PMC9079191; DOI: 10.1038/s41370-021-00400-x;
Showing 10 of 62 results. Show More

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

Bar chart showing 62 publications over 25 distinct years, with a maximum of 6 publications in 2021


Recent (within 3 months)

Sewage discharges increase risk of hospital visits for residents near Merrimack River, study finds

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Sewage surged into the Merrimack River in 2023 amid record rainfalls, endangering drinking water downstream

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WBUR 5/15/2023

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The Boston Globe 8/28/2022

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Scientific American 6/15/2022

New Bedford’s $1 billion harbor cleanup is nearly complete, EPA says

The Public's Radio 5/31/2022

The Navy told this military family they were safe from toxic water. Then both their children ended up in the ER

Task & Purpose 1/6/2022

The Infrastructure Bill Plans to Curb the Health Costs of Lead Exposure

VeryWell Health 7/9/2021

How the 6-Feet Rule Can Lead Us Astray

Slate 9/30/2020

Some Of The Hardest-Working Frontline Employees In New Orleans Are Living Paycheck To Paycheck

The Appeal 5/27/2020

What Are ‘Forever Chemicals’ And How Are They Getting in Your Food?

Healthline 6/12/2019

More Research Planned On PFAS Water Contamination In Merrimack

Patch 5/28/2019

States aren’t waiting for the Trump administration on environmental protections

The Washington Post 5/28/2019

As Scott Pruitt Flies First Class, EPA Barely Gets Off The Ground

The Huffington Post 3/27/2018

Medical Campus Sees Eight New Full Professorships

BU Today 3/8/2018

2015-2016 American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS): AAAS Science & Technology Fellowship
2013 BU School of Public Health: Excellence in Teaching - Risk Assessment Methods
2010 Boston University School of Public Health: Norman A. Scotch Award for Excellence in Teaching
In addition to these self-described keywords below, a list of MeSH based concepts is available here.

Endocrine disrupting chemicals
risk assessment
research translation
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715 Albany St Talbot Building
Boston MA 02118
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