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Agilent Announces Thought Leader Award to Professor Jennifer Field

publication date: Nov 22, 2023
author/source: Agilent Technologies
Professor Jennifer Field. Photo courtesy of Oregon State University

Oregon State University researcher recognized for her pioneering work with organic micropollutants and PFAS

Agilent Technologies Inc. has announced that Jennifer Field, an influential researcher in environmental analysis, has been selected to receive a prestigious Agilent Thought Leader Award.

A professor in the Environmental and Molecular Toxicology Department at Oregon State University’s College of Agricultural Sciences, Dr. Field focuses her research on the quantitative analysis of organic micropollutants and their transformation products in natural and engineered systems, particularly per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS). 

Commonly referred to as “forever chemicals”, PFAS have been widely used in various industrial applications since the 1940s. Recent studies have revealed that an increasing number of the over 5,000 identified PFAS chemicals pose a significant risk due to their resistance to biodegradation, potentially leading to harmful effects on both human health and wildlife. Thus, although their full toxicological and environmental implications remain the subject of intense research, detecting and identifying these substances in complex environmental matrices and commercial products is a pressing challenge. 

Professor Field commented on the Agilent Thought Leader Award. “It is with profound gratitude that I receive this prestigious award. Our investigative efforts are centered on the multifaceted array of PFAS compounds. Despite some shared attributes, the structural diversity exhibited by this wide array of chemicals is remarkable and poses many challenges. We are on a quest to help discern which PFAS are present to help inform human exposure to PFAS by collecting data on PFAS occurrence, fate, and transport. Agilent’s state-of-the-art technologies will undoubtedly be an invaluable asset in this quest.” 

As part of her multi-faceted research program in environmental analytical chemistry, Professor Field leads a team aiming to establish a hierarchical approach for the discovery, characterization, and quantification of PFAS present in groundwater, wastewater and other effluents, landfill leachates, commercial products, and consumer goods. To this end, they employ a strategy that combines gas- and  liquid chromatography with high resolution mass spectrometry complemented by other analyses to characterize the total fluorine content of samples and to characterize fluoropolymers and their additives. 

Ken Suzuki, vice president and general manager of Agilent’s Mass Spectrometry division, remarked on the significance of recognizing Professor Field with this award. “We are privileged to support Professor Field. Her innovative approach to utilizing analytical methodologies to comprehend and alleviate the environmental and health repercussions of PFAS is truly commendable. Her work will undoubtedly significantly influence environmental conservation and global health.” 

Under the guidance of Dr. Chong Wing Yung, Associate Director of Global University Relations and External Research at Agilent, the Agilent Thought Leader Award program is committed to fostering scientific advancement. This program supports esteemed thought leaders in the fields of life sciences, diagnostics, and chemical analysis by providing financial aid, products, and expertise. For more information, please visit the Agilent Thought Leader Award website.


About Agilent Technologies

Agilent Technologies Inc. (NYSE: A) is a global leader in analytical and clinical laboratory technologies, delivering insights and innovation that help our customers bring great science to life. Agilent’s full range of solutions includes instruments, software, services, and expertise that provide trusted answers to our customers' most challenging questions. The company generated revenue of $6.85 billion in fiscal 2022 and employs 18,000 people worldwide.


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