Dr. Souri Kumar Felix

Dr. Simone Heyliger

Associate Professor, Pharmaceutical Sciences

E-mail: simone.heylinger@hamptonu.edu


B.S. University of the Virgin Islands

Ph.D. Florida A&M University


Virtually all children in the United States have detectable levels of the pesticide Chlorpyrifos (CPF) in their bodies. Although, CPF has been shown to be relatively safe in adult animals, newly discovered evidence suggests that juveniles (animals and humans) may be more sensitive to CPF toxicity than adults. Our research seeks to delineate the effects of prolonged exposure of the Chlorpyrifos as well as its active metabolites chlorpyrifos-oxon (CPO) and 3,5,6-trichloro-2-pyridinol (TCP) on the development and function of oligodendrocytes and astrocytes. Our research is divided into three parts. The first part entails the determination of the effects of chlorpyrifos on glial cell viability and maturation. The second part seeks to determine if chlorpiyrifos interferes with the ability of glia cell to respond to trophic signals needed to cause cellular proliferation. Finally, the third part seeks to ascertain if chronic exposure to chlorpyrifos or its metabolites alters cellular functions of glia cells, which include myelin formation and cytokine production.

The ultimate goal of this research is to:

  • Increase public awareness of the possible effects of prenatal exposure to commonly used organophosphate pesticides.
  • Identify potential risks associated with in-utero exposure to Chlorpyrifos and organochlorine and organophosphate pesticides particularly in pregnant women in the migratory communities.
  • Identify the mechanism of action(s) by which Chlorpyrifos and close related analogs or congeners induces toxicity in children and neonates.


  1. Heyliger, S.O., Goodman, C.B., Ngong, J. and KFA Soliman (1998) The analgesic effects in the rat. Pharmacol. Res. 38(4):243-250.
  2. Heyliger, S.O., Payza, K., and R.B. Rothman (1998) The effect of FMRFamide analogs on [35S]GTP-gamma-S stimulation in squid optic lobes. Peptides 19(4):739-747.
  3. Goodman, C.B.; Heyliger, S.O., Emilien, B.; Partilla, J.S.; Yang, H.-Y.T., Lee, C.-H; Cadet, J.L. and R.B. Rothman. (1998) Regulation of mu binding sites after chronic administration of antibodies directed against specific anti-opiate peptides. Peptides. 19(10):1703-9.
  4. Heyliger SO, Mazzio EA and K.F. Soliman. (1999) The anti-inflammatory effects of quinolinic acid in the rat. Life Sci. 64(14):1177-87.
  5. Romero DV, Partilla JS, Zheng QX, Heyliger SO, Ni Q, Rice KC, Lai J, and R.B. Rothman.(1999) Opioid peptide receptor studies. 12. Buprenorphine is a potent and selective mu/kappa antagonist in the [35S]-GTP-gamma-S functional binding assay. Synapse. 34(2):83-94.
  6. Heyliger SO, Jackson C, Rice KC, Rothman RB. (1999) Opioid peptide receptor studies. 10. Nor-BNI differentially inhibits kappa receptor agonist-induced G-protein activation in the guinea pig caudate: further evidence of kappa receptor heterogeneity. Synapse. 34(4):256-65.
  7. Goodman CB, Heyliger S, Emilien B, Partilla JS, Yang HY, Lee CH, Cadet JL, Rothman RB. (1999) Chronic exposure to antibodies directed against anti-opiate peptides alter delta-opioid receptor levels. Peptides. 20(12):1419-24.
  8. Heyliger SO, Ni Q, and RB Rothman . (2000) Resolution of two [(35)S]GTP-gamma-S binding sites and their response to chronic morphine treatment: a binding surface analysis. Brain Res Bull. 51(4):357-62.
  9. Hulet SW, Heyliger SO, Powers S, Connor JR. (2000) Oligodendrocyte progenitor cells internalize ferritin via clathrin-dependent receptor mediated endocytosis. J Neurosci Res.1;61(1):52-60.
  10. Ford, C.; Heyliger, S.O.; Howard, A. and M. Saulsbury (2000) Ritalin: Friend or Foe? Minority Health Today 1:20-25
  11. Morse, J.K.; Johnson, D.J.; and S. Heyliger (2000) Understanding ethnic disparities in the treatment of affective disorders. Minority Health Today 2:24-27.