Dr. Prue Talbot
Professor of Cell Biology
Director, UCR Stem Cell Center and Core
Department of Cell Biology & Neuroscience

M.A., 1968 Wellesley College
Ph.D., 1972 University of Houston

Phone : (951) 827-3768
Fax : (951) 827-4286
e-mail : talbot@ucr.edu

Embryonic stem cells are derived from the inner cell mass of blastocysts and can differentiate into any of over 200 cells in the body. Because of their origin and their ability to differentiate, embryonic stem cells provide valuable models for studying the effects of environmental chemicals on prenatal stages of development. As humans, we are more sensitive to environmental toxicants during prenatal development than at any other time in the life cycle. Our lab is currently using human embryonic stem cells (hESC) and mouse neural stem cells (mNSC) to: (1) develop new "toxicology-in-a-dish" assays for studying environmental toxicants and (2) investigate the effects of environmental toxicants on early mammalian development.

We have recently validated a new multiplexing software tool for quantifying various endpoints in video data collected while colonies of hESC are being treated with test chemicals of interest. This technology, which uses a video bioinformatics approach, will enable future stem cell clinics to monitor the growth and health of the hESC prior to differentiation and transfer to patients and will provide toxicologists with a novel method for monitoring cellular responses to drugs or other chemicals treatments. We have also developed a streamlined and efficient method for using hESC in 96-well plate assays. This has been problematic previously because hESC are normally plated as small colonies and it is difficult to control accurate plating which is necessary in quantitative assays.

We also use hESC and mNSC to determine how new tobacco products affect human health, and we compare data obtained with prenatal models (hESC and mNSC) to adult models from human lung and brain. Much of our recent work has focused on electronic cigarettes and thirdhand smoke. Electronic cigarettes deliver nicotine without burning tobacco and are often thought to be less harmful than conventional cigarettes, although little is known about how they affect human health. One of our recent studies shows that fluids that are used to refill electronic cigarettes vary in their cytotoxicity and those that contain cinnamaldehyde were highly cytotoxic to both embryonic and adult cells. Thirdhand smoke is the residual smoke that settles on indoor surfaces where smoking has taken place. Again little is known about its health effects and we are currently using mNSC and hESC as models to investigate cellular response to whole thirdhand smoke and individual chemicals in thirdhand smoke.

We are also beginning to evaluate induced pluripotent stem cells from individuals with Huntington's disease. Our goal will be to understand what environmental factors effect onset of symptoms in patients at risk for this disease.

More information on the Talbot Lab

Recipient of Chancellor's Award for Excellence in Mentoring Undergraduate Research, 1998-99

Elected Fellow, AAAS, 2001

Recipient of the Honor's Program Mentor of the Year Award, 2003

Outstanding Mentor, UCR Environmental Toxicology Graduate Program, 2012


See publications on PubMed

Behar, R., M. Hua and P. Talbot (2014) Puffing topography and nicotine intake of electronic cigarette users. In press.

Bahl, V., P. Jacob III, C. Havel, S. Schick. and P. Talbot (2014) Thirdhand Cigarette Smoke: Factors Affecting Exposure and Remediation, PLOS ONE, DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0108258

Talbot, P. N. zur Nieden, S. Lin, I. Martinez, B. Guan and B. Bhanu (2014) Use of video bioinformatics tools in stem cell biology. In: Handbook of Nanotoxicology, Nanomedicine and Stem Cell Use in Toxicology, Eds: S. Sahu and D. Casciano, John Wiley, West Sussex, United Kingdom. pp 379-402.

Williams, M., A. Ghai, P. Talbot 2014. Disposable electronic cigarettes and electronic hookahs: evaluation of performance. Nicotine & Tobacco Research, doi: 10.1093/ntr/ntu118

Guan, B. X., B. Bhanu, P. Talbot, S. Lin (2014) Bio-driven cell region detection in human embryonic stem cell assay. IEEE/ACM Transactions on Computational Biology and Bioinformatics, 01/2014; 11(3):604-611. DOI:10.1109/TCBB.2014.2306836.

Davis, B., M. Dang, J. Kim and P. Talbot (2014) Nicotine concentrations in electronic cigarette refill fluids. Nicotine & Tobacco Research, doi:10.1093/ntr/ntu080.

Behar, R.Z., Davis, B., Wang, Y., Bahl, V., Lin, S., and P. Talbot (2013) Identification of toxicants in cinnamon-flavored electronic cigarette refill fluids. Toxicology In Vitro, 28:198-208.

Hua, C., Alfi, M., and P. Talbot (2013) Health-related effects reported by electronic cigarette users in online forums. Journal of Medical Internet Research 15 (4):e59. doi: 10.2196/jmir.2324.

Williams, M., Villarreal, A., Bozhilov, K., Lin, S., Talbot, P. (2013) Metal and silicate particles including nanoparticles are present in electronic cigarette cartomizer fluid and aerosol. PLoS ONE 8(3):e57987. Doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0057987.g001

Bahl, B. V., S. Lin, N. Xu, B. Davis, Y. Wang, P. Talbot (2012) Comparison of electronic cigarette refill fluid cytotoxicity using embryonic and adult models. Reproductive Toxicology, 34(4): 529-537.

Behar, R. Z., V. Bahl, Y. Wang, S. Lin, B. Davis, P. Talbot (2012) A method for rapid dose-response screening of environmental chemicals using human embryonic stem cells. J. Pharmacological Toxicological Methods. 66(3):238-45.doi:10.1016/j.vascn.2012.07.003.

Guan, B.X., Bhanu, B., Talbot, P., and Lin, S. (2012) Automated Human Embryonic Stem Cell Detection. 2012 IEEE Second International Conference on Healthcare Informatics, Imaging and Systems Biology (HISB), pp 75-82.

Behar, Rachel Z., Vasundhra Bahl, Yuhuan Wang, Jo-Hao Weng, Sabrina C. Lin, and Prue Talbot (2012) Adaptation of Stem Cells to 96-Well Plate Assays: Use of Human Embryonic and Mouse Neural Stem Cells in the MTT Assay. Current Protocols in Stem Cell Biology Nov; Chapter 1:Unit 1C.13. 40.

Guan, Benjamin X., Bir Bhanu, Prudence Talbot, and Sabrina Lin (2012) Detection of non-dynamic blebbing single unattached Human Embryonic Stem Cells. 19th IEEE International Conference on Image Processing (ICIP). pp 2293-2296.

Talbot, P. and S Lin (2011) The effect of cigarette smoke on fertilization and pre-implantation development: assessment using animal models, clinical data, and stem cells. Biological Research 44 (2), 189-194.

Hua, M., H. Yip, and P. Talbot (2011) Mining data on usage of electronic nicotine delivery systems (ENDS) from YouTube videos. Tobacco Control 22(2):103-6 doi: 10.1136/tobaccocontrol-2011-050226.

Williams, M. and P. Talbot (2011) Variability among electronic cigarettes in the pressure drop, airflow rate, and aerosol production. Nicotine & Tobacco Research 13(12):1276-83 doi: 10.1093/ntr/ntr164.

Matt GE, Quintana PJ, Destaillats H, Gundel LA, Sleiman M, Singer BC, Jacob Iii P, Benowitz N, Winickoff JP, Rehan V, Talbot P, Schick S, Samet J, Wang Y, Hang B, Martins-Green M, Pankow JF, Hovell MF. (2011) Thirdhand Tobacco Smoke: Emerging Evidence and Arguments for a Multidisciplinary Research Agenda. Environmental Health Perspectives. 119(8):1218-1226.

Talbot, P. and S. Lin (2011) Mouse and human embryonic stem cells: can they improve human health by preventing disease? Current Topics in Medicinal Chemistry, 11:1638-52. (PMID 21446909).

Guan, Benjamin, Bir Bhanu, Ninad Thakoor, Prudence Talbot, and Sabrina Lin (2011) Human Embryonic Stem Cell Detection by Spatial Information and Mixture of Gaussians, IEEE 1st International Conference on Healthcare Informatics, Imaging and Systems Biology. hisb, pp.307-314.

Lin, S., S. Fonteno, J-H Weng, and P. Talbot (2010) Comparison of toxicity of smoke from conventional and harm reduction cigarettes using human embryonic stem cells. Toxicological Sciences 118:202-212.

Lin, S., S Fonteno, S Satish, B Bhanu, P Talbot (2010) Video bioinformatics analysis of human embryonic stem cell colony growth. Journal of Visualized Experiments. 39 May 20 doi: 10.3791/1933

Trtchounian, A. and P. Talbot (2011) Electronic nicotine delivery systems: is there a need for regulation? Tobacco Control 20: 47-52.

Trtchounian, A., M. Williams, and P. Talbot. (2010) Conventional and electronic cigarettes (e-cigarettes) have different smoking characteristics. Nicotine & Tobacco Research 12: 905-912.

Lin, Sabrina and P. Talbot (2010) Methods for Culturing Mouse and Human Embryonic Stem Cells. In: Embryonic Stem Cell Therapy for Osteodegenerative Disease, Humana Press, pp 31-56.

Talbot, P. (2008) In vitro assessment of reproductive toxicity of tobacco smoke and its constituents. Birth Defects Research (Part C) 84: 61-72.

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