Niladri Basu

Associate Professor; Canada Research Chair in Environmental Health Sciences

(cross-appointed in the School of Dietetics and Human Nutrition)
Associate Member, Epidemiology and Biostatistics
Associate Member, Epidemiology and Biostatistics and Occupational Health
Associate Member, McGill School of the Environment 

T: 514-398-8642  |  niladri.basu [at] (Email) |  CINE Building, Room 204  |  Website


BSc 1999 (Queen’s)
MSc 2002 (British Columbia)
PhD 2005 (McGill)

Short Bio

Nil Basu obtained his BSc (Environmental Life Sciences) from Queen’s University, MSc (Animal Physiology) from the University of British and PhD (Wildlife Biology) from McGill. He spent two years as a NSERC Postdoctoral Scholar with Environment Canada prior to starting his academic career at the University of Michigan School of Public Health. In 2012 he returned to McGill where he holds a Canada Research Chair (CRC) in Environmental Health Sciences. The goal of Dr. Basu's research is to take an ecosystem approach to community, occupational, and environmental health whereby toxicological evidence is collected, scrutinized, and compared from across humans, wildlife, and ecosystems. The work has resulted in >120 peer-reviewed papers, been supported by >40 grants totaling >$30 million, and facilitated mentorship to >70 trainees. Dr. Basu is active internationally in terms of, for example, organizing dozens of scientific and stakeholder meetings, serving as Editor for key journals in the field of environmental toxicology and health, and consulting with notable institutions including WHO, UNEP, Environment Canada, and U.S. National Institutes of Health.

Awards and Recognitions

2013-2018 – Canada Research Chair (CRC) in Environmental Health Sciences
2013 – Excellence in Teaching, UM School of Public Health
2009 – Environmental Health Sciences Communication Fellow
2008 – Telluride Faculty Scholar
2008 – UM Undergraduate Research Opportunities Mentorship Award

Active Affiliations

Editor, Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry;
Member, UNEP Global Mercury Partnership;
Advisor, WHO/UNEP Mercury Biomonitoring Implementation;
Member, Science Council, Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry (SETAC);
Member, McGill Center for Indigenous Peoples’ Nutrition and Environment (CINE);
Science Advisory Council Member, Biodiversity Research Institute

Research Interests

The objective of Dr. Basu's program is to research, develop and apply ecosystem-based approaches to address key problems in the environmental health sciences. The focus is on applying environmental toxicology and exposure assessment to increase understanding of risks associated with contaminants arising from the extraction of natural resources. Key to this approach is the ability to scrutinize and integrate data across species in a comparative manner (i.e. humans along with fish, birds, marine and terrestrial mammals) and to scale responses across multiple tiers of biological organization in an integrative fashion (e.g. cell --> individual --> ecosystem). In doing so, our program has developed multi-disciplinary research and communication skills that enable us to engage with and link together ecological scientists, biomedical researchers, and human health practitioners.

The ultimate goal of our program is to conduct excellent research in the broader fields of ecosystem health (environmental toxicology) and human health (exposure science and epidemiology) such that outputs may be effectively disseminated to diverse stakeholders (e.g., students, policy makers, scientists, community partners) and lead to public health actions and policies that contribute to improve environmental quality and human health in Canada and internationally. 

Current Research

A) MERCURY TOXICOLOGY, with research from the molecular level to global policy;
B) ECOTOXICITY TESTING IN THE 21st CENTURY with a focus on developing tools that reduce costs, time, and dependency upon animals;
C) EXTRACTIVE SECTOR AND GLOBAL HEALTH: with a focus on electronic waste (e-waste) recycling and artisanal and small-scale gold mining (ASGM);
D) DRIED BLOODSPOTS & EXPOSURE SCIENCE with a focus on the development, validation, and application of methods to measure essential and toxic elements

For more information:


NUTR 450 Research Meth: Human Nutrition 3 Credits
    Offered in the:
  • Fall
  • Winter
  • Summer

NRSC 333 Pollution and Bioremediation 3 Credits
    Offered in the:
  • Fall
  • Winter
  • Summer

NRSC 671 Princ of Envrnmntl Hlth Sci 2 3 Credits
    Offered in the:
  • Fall
  • Winter
  • Summer

NRSC 672 Course not available


View a list of current publications