Applied Medical Sciences

John P. Wise Sr., Ph.D.

Professor of Toxicology & Molecular Epidemiology


476B Science Building

Contact Information

Phone: 207-228-8050

Dr. John Wise is the Principal Investigator of the Wise Laboratory of Environmental and Genetic Toxicology. He is a Professor of Toxicology and Molecular Epidemiology in the Department of Applied Medical Sciences, and Director of the Maine Center for Toxicology and Environmental Health at the University of Southern Maine.

Dr. Wise is also a graduate of Portland High School in Portland, Maine just down the street from the laboratory. He received the Brown medal and Frank Preti award for excellence in academics and athletics and was inducted into the Henry Wadsworth Longfellow Chapter of the National Honor Society.

Dr. Wise holds appointments at the Edgerton Research Laboratory in the New England Aquarium, Ocean Alliance, Mystic Aquarium and Sea Research Foundation, the Mount Desert Island Biological Laboratory, the University of New England, and the graduate school of the University of Maine. He serves on the Maine Governor's Task Force for Safer Chemicals in Consumer Products, the State of Maine Environmental Risk Advisory Committee, the Maine State Science and Technology Advisory Board, and on the Maine State Surface Water Ambient Toxics monitoring program.

Prior to coming to USM, Dr. Wise trained in pharmacology at the George Washington University, focusing on metal toxicology in cell culture models. He then completed a postdoctoral fellowship in the Laboratory of Human Carcinogenesis at the National Cancer Institute under the direction of Dr. Peter Shields and Dr. Curtis Harris. During this time he continued his work in cell culture and expanded his training into molecular epidemiology. Following this postdoctoral fellowship, Dr. Wise worked as the Senior Toxicologist at Jonathan Borak and Company, an environmental and occupational medicine consulting firm. During this time he wrote state-of-the-art toxicological reviews, prepared risk assessments and helped design health programs for workers exposed to chemicals. This led to a tenure-track position in the Department of Epidemiology and Public Health at Yale University, where Dr. Wise taught several courses and obtained numerous research grants. All combined, this training has provided Dr. Wise with theoretical, laboratory and practical training to investigate some of our most important environmental issues.

Research Interests

Dr. Wise's research interests are in the areas of cancer mechanism, metal toxicology, marine toxicology, and cell culture.

Recent Publications

1. Wise, Sr., J.P., Wise, S.S., LaCerte, C. and Aboueissa, A. The Genotoxicity of Particulate and Soluble Chromate in Sperm Whale (Physeter macrocephalus) Skin Fibroblasts. Environmental and Molecular Mutagenesis 52: 43-49, 2011.

2. Wise, S.S., and Wise, Sr., J.P. Aneuploidy as an Early Mechanistic Event in Metal Carcinogenesis. Biochemical Society Transactions 38(6): 1650-1654, 2010.

3. Wise Jr., J.P., Wise, S.S., Wise, J., McKay, J., Browne, M., Joyce, K., Braun, M., Wise, C., Duffy, R., Estell, E., Brown, J., Gianios Jr., C., Mason, M., Shehata, T., Hammond, D., Thompson, W.D., and Wise, Sr., J.P. Altered Gravity Exacerbates Chromate-Induced Genotoxicity. Gravitational and Space Biology, 23(2): 83-84, 2010.

4. Wise, Sr., J.P., Goodale, B.C., Wise, S.S., Craig, G., Sigdele, A., Walter, R.B., Thompson, W.D., Ng, A.K., Spalding, M.J. and Mason, M.D. Silver Nanospheres Are Cytotoxic and Genotoxic to Fish Cells. Aquatic Toxicology, 97: 34–41, 2010.

5. LaCerte, C., Xie, H., Abouiessa, A. and Wise, Sr., J.P. Particulate Depleted Uranium Is Cytotoxic and Clastogenic to Human Lung Epithelial Cells. Mutation Research, 697: 33–37, 2010.

6. Holmes, A.L., Wise, S.S., Pelsue, S.C., Aboueissa, A., Lingle, W., Salisbury, S., Gallaher, J. and Wise, Sr., J.P. Chronic Exposure to Zinc Chromate Induces Centrosome Amplification and Spindle Assembly Checkpoint Bypass in Human Lung Fibroblasts. Chemical Research in Toxicology, 23(2): 386-395, 2010.