Michael CunninghamNIEHS, NIH, retired, USA F1000 Section Head (since 29 June 2006)
Michael Cunningham joined Faculty of 1000 as a Faculty Member for the Toxicology Section on June 29th 2006.
On September 1st 2011, following an invitation from Floyd Bloom, Paul Insel and Leslie Iversen (Heads of the Pharmacology & Drug Discovery Faculty), Michael Cunningham was appointed as a Section Head for the Toxicology Section.
Michael L. Cunningham, Ph.D.
University of Arizona, Pharmacology and Toxicology, 1981.
Host Susceptibility Branch
National Toxicology Program
National Institutes of Health
National Institute of Environmental Health Science
Research Triangle Park, North Carolina
Recent advances in genomic, metabonomic and proteomic research, coupled with the availability of novel tools and methods to analyze the products of altered gene expression, have provided new insights into mechanisms of toxicity evoked by xenobiotics. While these advances promise to revolutionize our ability to characterize hazard, the challenge in the near future is to establish a body of available knowledge to serve as a foundation for applying the data generated by these new methods to risk assessment. Toxicogenomics is a powerful tool for improving human risk assessment because it will measure specific changes in gene expression in humans and other species that are exposed to drugs or other agents and to profile the process of disease progression. Careful data analysis could identify similar patterns in different species, leading to a "signature" for a given pathway of toxicity or disease state in humans. Once signatures are identified using large scale, global microarray analysis, it will then be possible to develop smaller, multi-chemical and multi-pathway arrays that can be used to assess the potential toxicity of chemicals in a rapid, prospective manner. This would result in better interspecies extrapolation, greater confidence in animal models, reduction in the number of animals needed for testing, faster testing, and most importantly, insights into pathways of toxicity and disease processes and their mechanisms heretofore unattainable using less developed technologies.
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