Professor Aradhana Mehra

Position: Head of Conservation, Biology and Ecosystems, Deputy Head of Department of Natural Sciences

College: College of Life & Natural Sciences

Department: Natural Sciences

Subject area: Environmental Sciences

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About

Head of Conservation, Biology and Ecosystems

Teaching responsibilities

I am Programme Leader for MSc Environmental Management (UDOL), I teach on various aspects of environmental pollution, biogeochemical cycling of environmental contaminants, human health implications of toxins in the environment, pollution abatement technologies, and analytical techniques for environmental analysis.

Research interests

My research interests lie in the area of biogeochemistry of elements in the water-soil-plant-human pathway. This is a growing area with considerable national and international interest to understand the links between the geochemical environment and the health of plants, animals and human beings. My current research work is in two main areas:

  • mobility, bioavailability and speciation of toxic trace metals in different environmental media and their impacts on biota including human beings
  • micro-anionic nutrients in the environment and their significance to human health.

Membership of professional bodies

Current professional memberships: 

  • CSci - Chartered Scientistt, The Science Council, Institution of Environmental Sciences, UK
  • CEnv - Chartered Environmentalist, Society for the Environment, UK
  • MIEMA - Full Member, Institute of Environmental Management and Assessment
  • MIEnvSc - Full Member, Institution of Environmental Sciences, UK
  • MInstLM - Member, Institute of Leadership and Management, UK.

Membership of professional societies:

  • Invited member of 'Science Diploma Higher Education Working Group', SEMTA (The Sector Skills Council for Science, Engineering and Manufacturing Technologies), 2008
  • Appointed member of Environment Agency's Regional Environment Protection Advisory Committee (REPAC), 2005-08, 2008-11: advisor to the Environment Agency on regional priorities impacting on regional policy making
  • Nominated and confirmed Vice-President of the National Federation of United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) Associations, India, 2005
  • Elected Chairperson, Society for Environmental Geochemistry and Health (SEGH), European Section (2002 - 05)
  • Invited Executive Committee member, Environment City Executive, Derby City Partnership, Derby City Council, 2003-06
  • Elected Councillor, Executive Board, Society for Environmental Geochemistry and Health (SEGH) USA, Europe, Asia Pacific, 2002 onwards
  • Invited Environmental Sustainability Advisor, Derby City Partnership Objective 2 Action Plan, Derby City Council, 2001 onwards
  • Invited member of the Executive Committee, Society for Environmental Geochemistry and Health (SEGH), European Section, 1997 onwards.

Qualifications

Research qualifications

  • PhD Environmental Chemistry, University of London.

Recent publications

Lynch P.T., Siddika A., Mehra A., Benelli C. and Lambardi M. 2014. Cryopreservation of Quince (Cydonia oblonga Mill.). Cryo Letters  35, 188-196

Mehra, A., Saikat, S.Q., and Carter, J.E.  2014. Bioavailability of iodine in the UK-Peak District environment and its human bioaccessibility: an assessment of the causes of historical goitre in this area. Environmental Monitoring and Assessment. 186, 987-999.

Chan, L., Mehra, A,. Saikat, S.Q., and Lynch, P.T. 2013. Human exposure assessment of fluoride from tea (Camellia sinensis L.): A UK based issue? Food Research International , 51, 564-570.

Mehra, A., Lynch, P., Saikat, S., Chan, L. 2013. Trace elements in tea (Camellia sinensis) and their bioavailability, In: Tea and Health and Disease Prevention, Ed. V.R. Preedy, Elsevier, London, UK, pp 257-274.

Lynch, P.T., Siddikaa, A.,  Johnston, J.W., Trigwell, S.M., Mehra, A., Benelli, C.,  Lambardi, M., Benson, E. 2011. Effects of Osmotic Pretreatments on Oxidative Stress, Antioxidant Profiles and Cryopreservation of Olive Somatic Embryos, Plant Science, 181, 47-56.

Chawla, R., Sathian, B, Mehra, A., Kiyawat, V., Garg, A., Shrama, K. 2010. Awareness and assessment of risk factors for lung cancer in residents of Pokhra Valley. Asian Pacific Journal of Cancer Prevention, 11, 1789-93.

Kalavrouziotisa, I.K., Koukoulakis, P.H., and Mehra, A. 2010. Quantification of elemental interaction effects on Brussels sprouts under treated municipal wastewater. Desalination. 254, 6-11.

Kalavrouziotisa, I.K., Koukoulakis, P.H., Papadopoulos, A.H. and Mehra, A. 2009. Heavy metal accumulation in Brussels sprouts after irrigation with treated municipal waste water. Journal of Plant Interactions, 4, 41-48.

Kalavrouziotisa, I.K., Koukoulakis, P.H., Papadopoulos, A.H. and Mehra, A. 2009 Heavy metal accumulation in Brussels sprouts after irrigation with treated municipal waste water. Journal of Plant Interactions4, 41-48.

Brewin, L.E., Mehra, A., Lynch, P.T. and Farago, M.E. 2007. Bioavailability of copper within Dolfrwynog Bog soils, North Wales, UK. Chemical Speciation and Bioavailability19, 149-162.

Lynch, P.T., Siddika, A., Mehra, A., Benelli, C and Lambardi, M. 2007. The challenge of successful cryopreservation of olive (Olea europeaeL.) shoot tips, Advances in Horticultural Science21 (4), 211-214.

Kalavrouziotis, I.K., Carter, J., Varnavas, S., Mehra, A. and Drakatos, A. 2006. Towards an understanding of metal contamination in food crops and soils related to road traffic. Fresenius Environmental Bulletin15, 170-175.

Kalavrouziotis, I.K., Carter, J., Varnavas, S., Mehra, A. and Drakatos, A. 2006. Towards an understanding of the effect of road pollution on adjacent food crops: Zea mays as an example. International Journal of Environment and Pollution, 30, 576-592.

Mehra, A. and Baker, C.L. 2006. Leaching and bioavailability of aluminium, copper and manganese from tea. Food Chemistry, 100, 1456-1463.

Kalavrouziotis, I.K., Carter, J., Varnavas, S., Mehra, A. and Drakatos, A. 2006. Towards an understanding of metal contamination in food crops and soils related to road traffic. Fresenius Environmental Bulletin, 15, 170-175.

Kalavrouziotis, I.K., Carter, J., Varnavas, S., Mehra, A. and Drakatos, A. 2006. Towards an understanding of the effect of road pollution on adjacent food crops: Zea mays as an example. International Journal of Environment and Pollution (in press)

Saikat, S.Q., Carter, J., Mehra, A., Smith, B. and Stewart, A. 2004. Goitre and environmental iodine deficiency in the UK-Derbyshire: A review. Environmental Geochemistry and Health, 26, 395-401.

Casper, S.T., Mehra, A., Farago, M.E. and Gill, R.A. 2004. Contamination of surface soils, river water, and sediments by trace metals from copper processing industry in the Churnet River Valley, Staffordshire, UK. Environmental Geochemistry and Health, 26, 59-67.

Recent conferences

Mehra, A. and Banerjee, D.K. 2014. Implications of traditional commercial practices on the current environmental status of River Yamuna in the Delhi-Mathura-Agra region, India. IWA Regional Symposium on Water, Wastewater and Environment: Traditions and Culture. March 2014, Patras, Greece. Pp 731-740.

Mehra, A., Lynch, P.T., Saikat, S.Q., Samson, L., Aigbogun, I., and Oluleye, O. 2013. Human exposure to fluoride from drinking water – a pilot study in the East Midlands region, UK.  29th International conference for the Society for Environmental Geochemistry and Health, July 2013, Toulouse, France.

Mehra, A., Lynch, P.T., Saikat, S.Q., Chan., L., Samson, L, and Squires, F. 2012. Human exposure to fluoride in Derbyshire, UK. 9th International Symposium on Environmental Geochemistry. July, 2012, Aveiro, Portugal.

Chan, L., Mehra, A., Lynch, P., and Saikat, S. 2011. Potential human exposure to aluminium and fluoride from tea (Camellia sinensis) consumption, at the International Conference on Environment and Health, incorporating the 28th SEGH (Society for Environmental Geochemistry & Health) European Conference and Workshops, April 2011, Edge Hill, Ormskirk, UK

Chan, L., Mehra, A., Lynch, P., and Saikat, S. 2011 Towards development of an in vitro method to estimate the oral bioavailability/bioaccessibility of fluoride from tea consumption at the International Conference on Environment and Health, incorporating the 28th SEGH (Society for Environmental Geochemistry & Health) European Conference and Workshops, April 2011, Edge Hill, Ormskirk, UK

Chan, L., Mehra, A., Lynch, P., and Saikat, S. 2010. Human Expoesure to fluoride from tea (Camellia sinensis), at the SEGH 2010 International Conference and Workshops of the Society for Environmental Geochemistry and Health on Environmental Quality and Human Health, June-July, 2010, Galway, Ireland

Stewart, A.G.,  Saikat, S.Q., Mehra, A. and Carter, J.E. 2009. Is soil always truly iodine deficient as a cause of IDD (iodine deficiency disorders)?  - potential for an environmental contribution to the control of IDD, at the International Society for Environmental Epidemiology (ISEE) and the Society for Environmental Geochemistry and Health conference, August, 2009, Dublin, Ireland.

Mehra, A, Saikat, S Q, , Carter, J E, Smith, B and Stewart, A. 2007. Human exposure to environmental iodine – a case study of endemic goiter in the UK-Peak District at the Urban Geochemistry and Health Conference, July, 2007, New Orleans, USA.

Saikat, S Q, Mehra, A, Carter, J E, Stewart, Aand Smith, B. 2007. ‘Derbyshire neck’ – the role of environmental iodine in the aetiology of goiter in the UK-Peak District, at the 25th European Conference of Society for Environmental Geochemistry and Health, June 2007, Liverpool, UK

Lynch, P.T., Siddika, A., Mehra, A., Benelli, C and Lambardi, M. 2007. The challenge of successful cryopreservation of olive (Olea europeae L.) shoot tips, at the COST 814, Working Group 2 Meeting – Technology, Application and Validation of Cryopreservation, CNR, National Research Council of Italy, May, 2007, Florence, Italy.

Saikat, S.Q., Mehra, A., Carter, J.E., Smith, B. and Stewart, A. 2005. Iodine and fluorine in the food chain in the UK-Peak District, at the 23rdEuropean Conference of Society for Environmental Geochemistry and Health, April, 2005,Paisley,UK.

Siddika, A., Lynch, P.T., Mehra, A., Benelli, C and Lambardi, M. 2004. The effect of sugar and polyol pretreatments on the post-thaw re-growth and oxidative status of somatic embryos of olive, at the 40thAnnual Society for Low Temperature Biology Meeting and Symposium on Mechanisms of Injury and Protection at Low Temperatures, September, 2004, London, UK.

Al Majathoub, M., Lynch, P., Mehra, A. and Harding, K. 2004. Cryopreservation of in vitro strawberry (Fragaria X ananassa Duch.) shoot tips, at the 40th Annual Society for Low Temperature Biology Meeting and Symposium on Mechanisms of Injury and Protection at Low Temperatures, September, 2004, London, UK.

 Mehra, A., Banerjee, D.K., Chan, L. and Boutsis, P. 2004. Bioavailability of selected toxic metals in the floodplains of River Yamuna, India, at the 22nd European Conference of Society for Environmental Geochemistry and Health, April, 2004, Brighton, UK. 29.

 Mehra, A., Saikat, S.Q., Carter, J.E., Smith, B. and Stewart, A. 2004. Mobility of fluorine in the fluorspar mining area of the UK-Peak District and its exposure to the local population, at the 22nd European Conference of Society for Environmental Geochemistry and Health, April, 2004, Brighton, UK, 68.

Additional interests and activities

I have supervised the following PhD students towards successful completion:

  • Kevin Cordes, 2001. Leaching and bioavailability of selected elements from coal-fired power station waste; other supervisors: Professor Margaret Farago, Imperial College, London, Professor D K Banerjee, Jawaharlal Nehru University, India.
  • Susan Casper. 2003. Contamination, bioavailability, and speciation of metals from copper processing industry in the Churnet River Valley, Staffordshire, UK.; other supervisors: Professor Margaret Farago, Imperial College, London, Mr Richard Gill.
  • Kathleen Holding, 2005. Epilithic periphyton as a potential biomonitor of trace metals contamination in freshwater aquatic systems; other supervisors: Professor Joy Carter, University of Glamorgan, Professor Trevor Brown.
  • Sohel Saikat, 2005. Distribution, mobility and health significance of iodine and fluorine in the UK-Peak District; Other supervisors: Professor Joy Carter, University of Glamorgan, Professor Barry Smith, British Geological Survey; Advisor: Dr Alex Stewart, Health Protection Agency.
  • Leigh Brewin, 2005. Towards the further understanding of the copper tolerance mechanisms in Armeria maritima (Mill.) Willd. (sea thrift); other supervisors: Professor Paul Lynch, Professor Margatert Farago Imperial College.
  • Mohannad Al-Majathoub, 2006. Development of cryopreservation techniques for strawberry Fragaria x ananassa Duchesne; other supervisors: Professor Paul Lynch.
  • Ayesha Siddika, 2007. In vitro conservation of germplasm of temperate woody fruit tree species; other supervisors: Professor Paul Lynch
  • Laura Chan, 2014. Human exposure assessment of fluoride from tea; other supervisors: Professor Paul Lynch; Dr Sohel Saikat Health Protection Agency.

Journal editorial boards:

  • Invited Assistant Editor of the international refereed journal, Chemical Speciation and Bioavailability, 2003-14
  • Invited member of the Editorial Board of the international refereed journal, Environmental Geochemistry and Health, 2003-14
  • Guest Editor, Special Issue of the international refereed journal, Environmental Geochemistry and Health, 2000.

International experience

Research and Academic Collaborations:

  • Amity University, Noida, India
  • Hellenic Open University, Greece
  • Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi, India
  • TERI University, New Delhi, India
  • University of Hawaii, USA.

On international programme validation panels

  • British College of Applied Studies, Colombo, Sri Lanka
  • Colombo International Nautical and Engineering College, Sri Lanka.

MSc, PhD Examinerships:

  • Curtin University of Technology, Perth, Australia
  • University of Cape Town, South Africa.

Grant Reviewer:

  • Kuwait Foundation for the Advancement of Sciences, Kuwait.

In the media

  • ITV News 6 pm, March 2009: interviewed on 'fluoridation of drinking water'
  • BBC East Midlands 1 pm and 6.30 pm News, July 25, 2013: Film on 'fluoride in tea and human health'.

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