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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2016, 13(2), 181; doi:10.3390/ijerph13020181

Environmental Chemical Assessment in Clinical Practice: Unveiling the Elephant in the Room

School of Health Sciences, RMIT University, Bundoora, Victoria 3083, Australia
These authors contributed equally to this work.
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Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Paul B. Tchounwou
Received: 11 December 2015 / Revised: 19 January 2016 / Accepted: 27 January 2016 / Published: 2 February 2016
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [376 KB, uploaded 2 February 2016]

Abstract

A growing body of evidence suggests chemicals present in air, water, soil, food, building materials and household products are toxicants that contribute to the many chronic diseases typically seen in routine medical practice. Yet, despite calls from numerous organisations to provide clinicians with more training and awareness in environmental health, there are multiple barriers to the clinical assessment of toxic environmental exposures. Recent developments in the fields of systems biology, innovative breakthroughs in biomedical research encompassing the “-omics” fields, and advances in mobile sensing, peer-to-peer networks and big data, provide tools that future clinicians can use to assess environmental chemical exposures in their patients. There is also a need for concerted action at all levels, including actions by individual patients, clinicians, medical educators, regulators, government and non-government organisations, corporations and the wider civil society, to understand the “exposome” and minimise the extent of toxic exposures on current and future generations. Clinical environmental chemical risk assessment may provide a bridge between multiple disciplines that uses new technologies to herald in a new era in personalised medicine that unites clinicians, patients and civil society in the quest to understand and master the links between the environment and human health. View Full-Text
Keywords: environmental chemical assessment; exposome; clinical practice; toxicant; environmental medicine; personalized medicine; systems biology environmental chemical assessment; exposome; clinical practice; toxicant; environmental medicine; personalized medicine; systems biology
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Bijlsma, N.; Cohen, M.M. Environmental Chemical Assessment in Clinical Practice: Unveiling the Elephant in the Room. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2016, 13, 181.

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