MORGANTOWN, W.Va. (CBSDFW.COM/AP) — A West Virginia University assistant professor has received a $450,000 grant from the National Institutes of Health to look at how airborne particles that result from hydraulic fracturing affect human health.

In hydraulic fracturing, oil and gas are extracted from rock by injecting mixtures of water, sand and chemicals underground.

READ MORE: Heating Issues Close 2 Elementary Schools In The Garland Independent School District

The university said in a news release that public health assistant professor Travis Knuckles will spend three years studying how the particles can make it harder to control how much blood enters the capillaries. He will also explore at how the particles can make it harder to turn oxygen into a chemical that is a primary energy source for cells.

READ MORE: Sunburned: Red-Hot Mavs Fall To Phoenix After Rough 4th Quarter 109-101

Knuckles and his research team will look at whether fine particles released by fracking are more toxic than particles normally found in urban air.

late last year the Trump administration rescinded proposed rules for hydraulic fracturing and other oil and gas-drilling practices on government lands.

MORE NEWS: Texas Amber Alert Issued For 14-Year-Old Hillary Salcedo Out Of Buda

(© Copyright 2018 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)