Michael Gochfeld

Professor Emeritus, Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, Rutgers Biomedical and Health Sciences, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey 

Email: gochfeld@eohsi.rutgers.edu


Post-doctorate, Behavioral Biology, Rockefeller University – 1975-1977

Ph.D., City University of New York – 1975

M.D., Albert Einstein College of Medicine -1965

B.A., Ecology – Oberlin College – 1961

Research Interests

  • Heavy metal contamination: environmental sources, exposure pathways, and toxic effects in humans and animals
  • Environmental consequences of energy decisions
  • Special emphasis on mercury, methylmercury and dimethylmercury
  • Recognition and prevention of diseases in the home, community and workplace environment
  • Community and household exposure to chromium
  • Environmental justice and exposure outliers

Brief Biography

Dr. Gochfeld is an occupational physician and environmental toxicologist who has examined environmental contamination and human exposure issues in many contexts. His main emphasis has been on heavy metals (mercury, lead, cadmium, chromium) and on arsenic. He has chaired international committees on risk factors for toxicology and cadmium toxicity as well as New Jersey’s mercury task force. He teaches medical students, public health students, graduate students in toxicology, as well as providing outreach to professionals in occupational and environmental health and safety.

He has been part of CRESP since the inception of CRESP I and was co-chair of the original task group on occupational health. This work entailed studies of occupational medical services available at DOE sites, leading to publications. He played a prominent role in CRESP’s Amchitka project including contributions to writing the Science Plan and serving as Health and Safety and Quality Assurance officer on the Amchitka Biological expedition in 2004.

CRESP Projects

  • Hanford site-wide risk review
  • Chromium exposure and health of Columbia River salmon populations
  • Oak Ridge Prioritization
  • Comparative analysis of occupational health services at DOE sites
  • Amchitka Project: health and safety officer and quality assurance supervisor.


Salazar, M.K., Takaro, T.K., Gochfeld, M., Barnhart, S. Occupational heath services at then U.S. Department of Energy weapon sites. American Journal of Medicine. April;43(4):418-28, 2003.

Syers, J.k., Gochfeld, M. (eds) Environmental Cadmium in the Food Chain: Sources, Pathways, and Risks. Brussels, Belgium: Scientific Committee on Problems of the Environment. 2002.

Burger J, Gochfeld M. Gender differences in resource use and evaluation of attributes of places of resource use by native americans and Caucasians from Western idaho: relevance to risk evaluations. J Toxicol Environ Health A. 2010 Jan;73(24):1655-64.

Burger J, Powers C, Gochfeld M. Regulatory requirements and tools for environmental assessment of hazardous wastes: understanding tribal and stakeholder concerns using Department of Energy sites.
J Environ Manage. 2010 Dec;91(12):2707-16. Epub 2010 Aug 16.

Burger J, Harris S, Harper B, Gochfeld M. Ecological information needs for environmental justice. Risk Anal. 2010 Jun;30(6):893-905. Epub 2010 Apr 8.

Burger J, Clarke J, Gochfeld M. Information needs for siting new, and evaluating current, nuclear facilities: ecology, fate and transport, and human health. Environ Monit Assess. 2010 Feb 6. [Epub ahead of print]

Gochfeld M, Bogden JD, Louria DB. Ethics and principles in medical monitoring of populations exposed to environmental hazards. J Occup Environ Med. 2009 Dec;51(12):1363-6. No abstract available.
PMID: 19952784 [PubMed – indexed for MEDLINE]

Burger J, Gochfeld M, Pletnikoff K. Collaboration versus communication: The Department of Energy’s Amchitka Island and the Aleut Community. Environ Res. 2009 May;109(4):503-10. Epub 2009 Mar 4.

Burger J, Gochfeld M. Changes in Aleut concerns following the stakeholder-driven Amchitka independent science assessment. Risk Anal. 2009 Aug;29(8):1156-69.

Burger J, Gochfeld M, Pletnikoff K, Snigaroff R, Snigaroff D, Stamm T. Ecocultural attributes: evaluating ecological degradation in terms of ecological goods and services versus subsistence and tribal values. Risk Anal. 2008 Oct;28(5):1261-72. Epub 2008 Jul 24.

Burger J, Gochfeld M, Shukla S, Jeitner C, Ramos R, Tsipoura N, Donio M. Pollution, contamination and future land use at Brookhaven National Laboratory. Arch Environ Contam Toxicol. 2008 Oct;55(3):341-7. Epub 2008 Apr 30.

Burger J, Gochfeld M, Shukla T, Jeitner C, Burke S, Donio M, Shukla S, Snigaroff R, Snigaroff D, Stamm T, Volz C.
Heavy metals in Pacific cod (Gadus macrocephalus) from the Aleutians: location, age, size, and risk. J Toxicol Environ Health A. 2007 Nov;70(22):1897-911.

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