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About Us...

Lead’s Urban Legacy deals with lead, a pervasive environmental pollutant that alters the biological signals in the human nervous system. The adverse effects of lead on brain health and function have been known since the Roman Empire.

Howard MielkeProfessor Howard Mielke, Department of Pharmacology, Tulane University School of Medicine is an expert on this topic. Dr. Mielke has been studying lead and its effects on health for over 40 years resulting in numerous publications. His work has been covered in several public media (including "Hidden Poison" broadcast by ABC Primetime, USA Today’s “Ghost Factories”, WBRZ’s “Lead in Playgrounds”, WVUE's "Toxic Beads", MSNBC's Melissa-Harris Perry "How lead could be tied to crime", Detroit Free Press' "Hazards lurking in soil as children play", Mother Jones' "America's Real Criminal Element: Lead"), and The Atlantic's "The Poisoned Generation".

Dr. Howard Mielke is the creator of the Lead Lab project, a not for profit initiative dedicated to helping communities with lead contamination in children's play areas. He is currently a faculty member in Tulane School of Medicine's Pharmacology Department and part of the Environmental Signaling Laboratory research effort.

Dr. Mielke most recently participated and facilitated the New Orleans Museum of Art’s Family Day: NOMA Unleaded event, which involved several activities themed around awareness of lead in the environment.


Lead’s Urban Legacy is in part funded by a generous donation from Ling and Ronald Cheng.

John McLachlanThis site is also part of the Environmental Signaling Network (ESN) project, which includes e.hormone.tulane.edu and is hosted by Tulane University. ESN is currently funded by a grant from the National Science Foundation on Enhancing Diversity in Environmental Biology, and the generous support of the Weatherhead Foundation. Legacy funding for ESN includes an originating grant by the W. Alton Jones Foundation, a Research Coordination Network Grant from NSF, and grants from the Office of Naval Research, USDA and EPA to John A. McLachlan as PI.