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SBE Seminar Series: Juan Romero, UMaine School of Food and Agriculture

March 8 @ 3:00 pm - 4:00 pm

SBE Seminar ad for speaker Juan Romero, with portrait photo of Juan

Dr. Juan Romero, UMaine School of Food and Agriculture

The impact of PFAS on the forage-herbivore-human continuum

According to the EPA, exposure to certain PFAS (per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances) causes serious pathologies in humans. The US EPA current advisory level for PFOS (perflouroctane sulfonate) in drinking water is 0.02 ppt. Based on a previous EPA drinking water PFOS advisory level of 70 ppt, Maine was the first state to set the action level for milk and beef PFOS at 210 and 3,400 ppt, respectively. Among all PFAS, only PFOS, perfluorooctanoic acid, and perfluorohexanesulfonic acid have been reported in cattle milk worldwide, and only PFOS has been identified in milk produced from contaminated sites in Maine. PFOS chronically bioaccumulates in animal tissues, especially in the liver, kidneys, and serum plasma, while most other absorbed PFAS are excreted through urine in cattle and sheep. Because milk is a significant excretion route of PFOS in mammals, dairy farms located in contaminated sites have been especially affected. Research is being conducted in UMaine and worldwide to provide solutions to livestock farmers affected by PFAS contamination.

Dr. Juan Romero is an Associate Professor of Forage Science and Dairy Cattle Nutrition at the University of Maine, seeking to expand our understanding of the factors that affect forage quality and conservation and develop novel strategies that can increase the profitability of farmers. Specifically, his research program is working to optimize the use of hay and silage preservatives and to develop additives and management practices that can decrease PFAS contamination in livestock systems. Dr. Romero earned his B.Sc. degree in Animal Sciences at the National Agrarian University in Lima, Peru (2007) and both his M.Sc. (2009) and Ph.D. (2013) in Animal Sciences with an emphasis in Ruminant Nutrition at the University of Florida, USA. His post-doctoral experience in forage science was completed at North Carolina State University, USA (2016).


March 8
3:00 pm - 4:00 pm
Event Category:


Senator George J. Mitchell Center for Sustainability Solutions
5710 Norman Smith Hall
Orono, ME 04469 United States
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