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Julie J. Burtt, MSc., PhD Candidate

Radiation and Health Sciences Officer, Health Sciences and Environmental Compliance Division, CNSC


Radiation Biology, Risk Assessment, Nuclear Safety, Radiation Protection, Human Health Risk Assessment, Cell Biology, Biological Dosimetry, Cytokinesis-Block Micronucleus Assay, Risk Communication

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Roles and responsibilities

Julie J. Burtt is a radiation and health sciences officer at the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC). Ms. Burtt has 15 years of experience in the field of radiation biology. She is primarily responsible for assessing the risks of exposure to low doses of ionizing radiation. She has extensive experience in risk communication and human health risk assessment, and frequently provides expert scientific and technical information to the CNSC Commission, the public, Indigenous groups and other stakeholders, as well as to colleagues in Canada and abroad.

Ms. Burtt has been an advisor with the Canadian delegation to the United Nations Scientific Committee on the Effects of Atomic Radiation (UNSCEAR) for 2019 and 2020. In addition, she is a member of the Nuclear Energy Agency’s Expert Group on Non-Radiological Public Health Aspects of Radiation Emergency Planning and Response (EGNR). Ms. Burtt is also a member of the COHERE Scientific Committee.

Current research and/or projects

  • Investigating the biological and human health risks of radiation exposures relevant to occupational and environmental levels by bridging the knowledge gap between human health risks and molecular-level and cellular-level responses to radiation in collaboration with Health Canada
  • Investigating the non-radiological public health aspects of radiation emergency planning and response
  • Researching the impacts of perceived risk of low doses of ionizing radiation
  • Evaluating medical exposures to ionizing radiation in Canada in collaboration with Health Canada and the Canadian Agency for Drugs and Technologies in Health
  • Adapting the cytokinesis-block micronucleus assay to imaging flow cytometry in collaboration with Health Canada


  • PhD candidate, Laurentian University, Human Studies and Interdisciplinarity (present)
  • MSc, Laurentian University, Chemical Sciences (2011)
  • BSc, University of Ottawa, minor in Cellular and Molecular Medicine (2007)
  • BSc, University of Ottawa, major in Biochemistry (2006)

Professional activities/interests

  • Low dose radiation research
  • Risk communication
  • Perceived risk
  • Outreach and education


  • Member of SHARE (Social Sciences and Humanities in Ionizing Radiation)
  • Member of EGNR
  • Advisor to UNSCEAR
  • Radiation Research Society
  • Canadian Radiation Protection Association
  • Women In Nuclear


  • CNSC, Bravo Award for Dedication and Professionalism for writing the Commission Member Document The Biological Mechanisms Acting at Low Doses of Radiation in combination with an excellent presentation to the Commission (2017)
  • CNSC, Excellence Award for Technical Expertise demonstrated for the CNSC Hypothetical Severe Accident Study (2015)
  • CNSC, Excellence Award for Inspiration on CNSC YouTube Videos (2015)
  • Canadian Nuclear Society, John S. Hewitt Team Achievement Award for the ground-breaking study on populations living near the three nuclear power plants in Ontario (2014)
  • CNSC, Instant Award for Outstanding Contribution to the RADICON study (2013)
  • CNSC, Bravo Award for Outstanding Contribution to the Port Hope Synthesis Report (2009)
  • CNSC, Bravo Award for Outstanding Contribution to the Tritium Workshop (2008)

Key publications

  • Burtt JJ, M Rickard, A McAllister, L Bergman and Zablotska LB.  Projecting thyroid cancer risk to the general public from radiation exposure following hypothetical severe nuclear accidents in Canada. Journal of Radiological Protection 2020 (in press).
  • Leblanc J and Burtt J. (2019). Radiation Biology and its role in the Canadian radiation protection framework. Health Physics 117(3):319-329.
  • Chauhan V, Said Z, Daka J, Sadi B, Bijlani D, Marchetti F, Beaton D, Gaw A, Li C, Burtt J, Leblanc J, Desrosiers M, Stuart M, Brossard M, Vuong NQ, Wilkins R, Qutob S, McNamee J, Wang Y, Yauk C. (2019). Is there a role for the adverse outcome pathway framework to support radiation protection? International Journal of Radiation Biology 95(2):225-232.
  • Burtt J, Thompson P, and Lafrenie R. 2016. Response to criticism of the paper titled 'Non-targeted effects and radiation-induced carcinogenesis: a review'. Journal of Radiological Protection 36(4): 1015-1016.
  • Burtt JJ, Thompson PA, and Lafrenie RM. 2016. Non-targeted effects and radiation-induced carcinogenesis: a review. Journal of Radiological Protection 36 (1): R23-35.
  • Lane R, Dagher E, Burtt J, Thompson P. (2013). Radiation exposure and cancer incidence (1990 to 2008) around nuclear power plants in Ontario, Canada. Journal of Environmental Protection 4: 888-913.
  • Burtt J. (2011). The relationship between low level ionizing radiation exposure and cancer gene expression: A review. School of Graduate Studies, Laurentian University, Sudbury Ontario.
  • Burtt J, Ilin M, Lane R, Thompson P, Phaneuf M, Reinhardt P. (2011). Use of a Weight of Evidence Approach to Determine the Likelihood of Adverse Effects on Human Health from the Presence of Uranium Facilities in Port Hope, Ontario. Journal of Environmental Protection 2(9): 1149-1161 
  • Bundy K, Thériault B, Lane R, Burtt J and Thompson P. (2011). Tritium, Health Effects and Dosimetry. Encyclopedia of Sustainability Science and Technology. Springer New York Dordrecht Heidelberg London.
  • Burtt J and Bundy K. (2009). Report on the CNSC workshop on the assessment and control of tritium’s health risk held on 8 January 2008 in Ottawa, Canada. Journal of Radiological Protection 29: 113-117.
  • Burtt J et al. (2011). Events in Japan, a CNSC Perspective. Canadian Radiation Protection Association Bulletin Vol 32 No 3 (Fall).
  • Burtt J and Bundy K. (2008). Report on the CNSC workshop on the assessment and control of the health risk of tritium. Canadian Radiation Protection Association Bulletin Vol 29 No 4 (Winter).

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