The Ralph Shugar Chapel is handling funeral arrangements and confirmed Needleman died Tuesday in Pittsburgh. His cause of death wasn't immediately clear.
The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports Needleman was also a psychiatrist and had been a professor of psychiatry and pediatrics at Pitt's School of Medicine and Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic.
But he was best known for his research in the 1970s that led companies to remove lead from gasoline and other products after documenting behavior problems, lower intelligence scores and worse school performance in children exposed to lead.
Services will be held at 10 a.m. Friday at Rodef Shalom Temple in Pittsburgh.
Copyright 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.