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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health, Volume 7, Issue 11 (November 2010), Pages 3853-4099

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Research

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Open AccessArticle Measurement of Secondary Products During Oxidation Reactions of Terpenes and Ozone Based on the PTR-MS Analysis: Effects of Coexistent Carbonyl Compounds
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2010, 7(11), 3853-3870; doi:10.3390/ijerph7113853
Received: 21 September 2010 / Revised: 9 October 2010 / Accepted: 26 October 2010 / Published: 1 November 2010
Cited by 7 | PDF Full-text (286 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Continuous measurements using proton transfer reaction mass spectrometry (PTR-MS) can be used to describe the production processes of secondary products during ozone induced oxidation of terpenes. Terpenes are emitted from woody building materials, and ozone is generated from ozone air purifiers and copy
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Continuous measurements using proton transfer reaction mass spectrometry (PTR-MS) can be used to describe the production processes of secondary products during ozone induced oxidation of terpenes. Terpenes are emitted from woody building materials, and ozone is generated from ozone air purifiers and copy machines in indoor environments. Carbonyl compounds (CCs) are emitted by human activities such as smoking and drinking alcohol. Moreover, CCs are generated during ozone oxidation of terpenes. Therefore, coexistent CCs should affect the ozone oxidation. This study has focused on the measurement of secondary products during the ozone oxidation of terpenes based on the use of PTR-MS analysis and effects of coexistent CCs on oxidized products. Experiments were performed in a fluoroplastic bag containing α-pinene or limonene as terpenes, ozone and acetaldehyde or formaldehyde as coexistent CCs adjusted to predetermined concentrations. Continuous measurements by PTR-MS were conducted after mixing of terpenes, ozone and CCs, and time changes of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) concentrations were monitored. Results showed that, high-molecular weight intermediates disappeared gradually with elapsed time, though the production of high-molecular weight intermediates was observed at the beginning. This phenomenon suggested that the ozone oxidation of terpenes generated ultrafine particles. Coexistent CCs affected the ozone oxidation of α-pinene more than limonene. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Indoor Air Pollution and Human Health)
Open AccessArticle Elevated Oestrogen Receptor Splice Variant ERαΔ5 Expression in Tumour-adjacent Hormone-responsive Tissue
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2010, 7(11), 3871-3889; doi:10.3390/ijerph7113871
Received: 3 September 2010 / Revised: 27 October 2010 / Accepted: 29 October 2010 / Published: 2 November 2010
Cited by 7 | PDF Full-text (487 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Susceptibility to prostate or endometrial cancer is linked with obesity, a state of oestrogen excess. Oestrogen receptor (ER) splice variants may be responsible for the tissue-level of ER activity. Such micro-environmental regulation may modulate cancer initiation and/or progression mechanisms. Real-time reverse transcriptase (RT)
[...] Read more.
Susceptibility to prostate or endometrial cancer is linked with obesity, a state of oestrogen excess. Oestrogen receptor (ER) splice variants may be responsible for the tissue-level of ER activity. Such micro-environmental regulation may modulate cancer initiation and/or progression mechanisms. Real-time reverse transcriptase (RT) polymerase chain reaction (PCR) was used to quantitatively assess the levels of four ER splice variants (ERαΔ3, ERαΔ5, ERβ2 and ERβ5), plus the full-length parent isoforms ERα and ERβ1, in high-risk [tumour-adjacent prostate (n = 10) or endometrial cancer (n = 9)] vs. low-risk [benign prostate (n = 12) or endometrium (n = 9)], as well as a comparison of UK (n = 12) vs. Indian (n = 15) benign prostate. All three tissue groups expressed the ER splice variants at similar levels, apart from ERαΔ5. This splice variant was markedly raised in all of the tumour-adjacent prostate samples compared to benign tissues. Immunofluorescence analysis for ERβ2 in prostate tissue demonstrated that such splice variants are present in comparable, if not greater, amounts as the parent full-length isoform. This small pilot study demonstrates the ubiquitous nature of ER splice variants in these tissue sites and suggests that ERαΔ5 may be involved in progression of prostate adenocarcinoma. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biomarkers: Environmental Research and Public Health)
Open AccessArticle Effects of Changed Aircraft Noise Exposure on the Use of Outdoor Recreational Areas
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2010, 7(11), 3890-3915; doi:10.3390/ijerph7113890
Received: 24 September 2010 / Revised: 27 October 2010 / Accepted: 28 October 2010 / Published: 3 November 2010
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (411 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
This paper examines behavioural responses to changes in aircraft noise exposure in local outdoor recreational areas near airports. Results from a panel study conducted in conjunction with the relocation of Norway’s main airport in 1998 are presented. One recreational area was studied at
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This paper examines behavioural responses to changes in aircraft noise exposure in local outdoor recreational areas near airports. Results from a panel study conducted in conjunction with the relocation of Norway’s main airport in 1998 are presented. One recreational area was studied at each airport site. The samples (n = 1,264/1,370) were telephone interviewed about their use of the area before and after the change. Results indicate that changed aircraft noise exposure may influence individual choices to use local outdoor recreational areas, suggesting that careful considerations are needed in the planning of air routes over local outdoor recreational areas. However, considerable stability in use, and also fluctuations in use unrelated to the changes in noise conditions were found. Future studies of noise impacts should examine a broader set of coping mechanisms, like intra- and temporal displacement. Also, the role of place attachment, and the substitutability of local areas should be studied. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Noise and Quality of Life)
Open AccessArticle Spatiotemporal Trends in Oral Cancer Mortality and Potential Risks Associated with Heavy Metal Content in Taiwan Soil
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2010, 7(11), 3916-3928; doi:10.3390/ijerph7113916
Received: 30 September 2010 / Revised: 2 November 2010 / Accepted: 3 November 2010 / Published: 5 November 2010
Cited by 10 | PDF Full-text (995 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Central and Eastern Taiwan have alarmingly high oral cancer (OC) mortality rates, however, the effect of lifestyle factors such as betel chewing cannot fully explain the observed high-risk. Elevated concentrations of heavy metals in the soil reflect somewhat the levels of exposure to
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Central and Eastern Taiwan have alarmingly high oral cancer (OC) mortality rates, however, the effect of lifestyle factors such as betel chewing cannot fully explain the observed high-risk. Elevated concentrations of heavy metals in the soil reflect somewhat the levels of exposure to the human body, which may promote cancer development in local residents. This study assesses the space-time distribution of OC mortality in Taiwan, and its association with prime factors leading to soil heavy metal content. The current research obtained OC mortality data from the Atlas of Cancer Mortality in Taiwan, 1972–2001, and derived soil heavy metals content data from a nationwide survey carried out by ROCEPA in 1985. The exploratory data analyses showed that OC mortality rates in both genders had high spatial autocorrelation (Moran’s I = 0.6716 and 0.6318 for males and females). Factor analyses revealed three common factors (CFs) representing the major pattern of soil pollution in Taiwan. The results for Spatial Lag Models (SLM) showed that CF1 (Cr, Cu, Ni, and Zn) was most spatially related to male OC mortality which implicates that some metals in CF1 might play as promoters in OC etiology. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Geostatistics in Environmental Pollution and Risk Assessment)
Open AccessArticle Municipalities Collaborating in Public Health: The Danish Smoking Prevention and Cessation Partnership
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2010, 7(11), 3954-3971; doi:10.3390/ijerph7113954
Received: 8 October 2010 / Revised: 23 October 2010 / Accepted: 3 November 2010 / Published: 9 November 2010
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (294 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
This study explored the Smoking Prevention and Cessation Partnership (SPCP) which builds upon a collaboration between two Danish municipalities targeted at the prevention of tobacco smoking. The aim of the study was to describe the processes of SPCP, to examine the difficulties this
[...] Read more.
This study explored the Smoking Prevention and Cessation Partnership (SPCP) which builds upon a collaboration between two Danish municipalities targeted at the prevention of tobacco smoking. The aim of the study was to describe the processes of SPCP, to examine the difficulties this collaboration faced, and to assess how these experiences could be used to improve future partnership collaboration. We employed qualitative methodology comprising 12 semi-structured one-to-one interviews with SPCP’s stakeholders and an analysis of the partnership documents and reports. The findings suggested that the main potentials of the partnership were the personal relations between the members and stakeholders with the possibilities of the creation of new connections with other actors. Barriers to successful partnership building were the implementation of the new Local Government Reform as a competing task, and that the two municipalities were heterogenic in respect to organizational issues and working methods. Other impediments included the lack of continuity in leadership, the lack of clarity regarding the form of collaboration and roles, as well as different expectations of the stakeholders. We conclude that four factors remain critical for partnerships. The first is the clarity of the collaborative effort. Second, partnerships need to take into account the structural circumstances and culture/value systems of all stakeholders. Third is the impact of contextual factors on the development of the partnership; and the fourth factor is the bearing of personal/individual factors on the partnership e.g., personal engagement in the project. Early attention to these four factors could contribute to more effective partnership working. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Tobacco Smoking: Public Health, Science and Policy)
Open AccessArticle Environmental Monitoring and Analysis of Faecal Contamination in an Urban Setting in the City of Bari (Apulia Region, Italy): Health and Hygiene Implications
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2010, 7(11), 3972-3986; doi:10.3390/ijerph7113972
Received: 8 October 2010 / Revised: 30 October 2010 / Accepted: 2 November 2010 / Published: 9 November 2010
Cited by 11 | PDF Full-text (398 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Few studies have been conducted in Italy to quantify the potential risk associated with dynamics and distribution of pathogens in urban settings. The aim of this study was to acquire data on the environmental faecal contamination in urban ecosystems, by assessing the presence
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Few studies have been conducted in Italy to quantify the potential risk associated with dynamics and distribution of pathogens in urban settings. The aim of this study was to acquire data on the environmental faecal contamination in urban ecosystems, by assessing the presence of pathogens in public areas in the city of Bari (Apulia region, Italy). To determine the degree of environmental contamination, samples of dog faeces and bird guano were collected from different areas in the city of Bari (park green areas, playgrounds, public housing areas, parkways, and a school). A total of 152 canine faecal samples, in 54 pools, and two samples of pigeon guano from 66 monitored sites were examined. No samples were found in 12 areas spread over nine sites. Chlamydophila psittaci was detected in seven canine and two pigeon guano samples. Salmonella species were not found.  On the other hand, four of 54 canine faecal samples were positive for reovirus. Thirteen canine faecal samples were positive for parasite eggs: 8/54 samples contained Toxocara canis and Toxascaris leonina eggs and 5/54 samples contained Ancylostoma caninum eggs. Our study showed that public areas are often contaminated by potentially zoonotic pathogens. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Recent Advances in Public Health)
Open AccessArticle Photodegradation of Selected PCBs in the Presence of Nano-TiO2 as Catalyst and H2O2 as an Oxidant
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2010, 7(11), 3987-4001; doi:10.3390/ijerph7113987
Received: 8 October 2010 / Revised: 25 October 2010 / Accepted: 12 November 2010 / Published: 15 November 2010
Cited by 6 | PDF Full-text (725 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Photodegradation of five strategically selected PCBs was carried out in acetonitrile/water 80:20. Quantum chemical calculations reveal that PCBs without any chlorine on ortho-positions are closer to be planar, while PCBs with at least one chlorine atoms at the ortho-positions causes the
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Photodegradation of five strategically selected PCBs was carried out in acetonitrile/water 80:20. Quantum chemical calculations reveal that PCBs without any chlorine on ortho-positions are closer to be planar, while PCBs with at least one chlorine atoms at the ortho-positions causes the two benzene rings to be nearly perpendicular. Light-induced degradation of planar PCBs is much slower than the perpendicular ones. The use of nano-TiO2 speeds up the degradation of the planar PCBs, but slows down the degradation of the non-planar ones. The use of H2O2 speeds up the degradation of planar PCBs greatly (by >20 times), but has little effect on non-planar ones except 2,3,5,6-TCB. The relative photodegradation rate is: 2,2’,4,4’-TCB > 2,3,5,6-TCB > 2,6-DCB ≈ 3,3’,4,4’-TCB > 3,4’,5-TCB. The use of H2O2 in combination with sunlight irradiation could be an efficient and “green” technology for PCB remediation. Full article
Open AccessArticle An Assessment of the Interindividual Variability of Internal Dosimetry during Multi-Route Exposure to Drinking Water Contaminants
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2010, 7(11), 4002-4022; doi:10.3390/ijerph7114002
Received: 9 October 2010 / Revised: 4 November 2010 / Accepted: 12 November 2010 / Published: 17 November 2010
Cited by 8 | PDF Full-text (209 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The objective of this study was to evaluate inter-individual variability in absorbed and internal doses after multi-route exposure to drinking water contaminants (DWC) in addition to the corresponding variability in equivalent volumes of ingested water, expressed as liter-equivalents (LEQ). A multi-route PBPK model
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The objective of this study was to evaluate inter-individual variability in absorbed and internal doses after multi-route exposure to drinking water contaminants (DWC) in addition to the corresponding variability in equivalent volumes of ingested water, expressed as liter-equivalents (LEQ). A multi-route PBPK model described previously was used for computing the internal dose metrics in adults, neonates, children, the elderly and pregnant women following a multi-route exposure scenario to chloroform and to tri- and tetra-chloroethylene (TCE and PERC). This scenario included water ingestion as well as inhalation and dermal contact during a 30-min bathroom exposure. Monte Carlo simulations were performed and distributions of internal dose metrics were obtained. The ratio of each of the dose metrics for inhalation, dermal and multi-route exposures to the corresponding dose metrics for the ingestion of drinking water alone allowed computation of LEQ values. Mean BW-adjusted LEQ values based on absorbed doses were greater in neonates regardless of the contaminant considered (0.129–0.134 L/kg BW), but higher absolute LEQ values were obtained in average adults (3.6–4.1 L), elderly (3.7–4.2 L) and PW (4.1–5.6 L). LEQ values based on the parent compound’s AUC were much greater than based on the absorbed dose, while the opposite was true based on metabolite-based dose metrics for chloroform and TCE, but not PERC. The consideration of the 95th percentile values of BW-adjusted LEQ did not significantly change the results suggesting a generally low intra-subpopulation variability during multi-route exposure. Overall, this study pointed out the dependency of the LEQ on the dose metrics, with consideration of both the subpopulation and DWC. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Drinking Water and Health)
Open AccessArticle Liquid-Diet with Alcohol Alters Maternal, Fetal and Placental Weights and the Expression of Molecules Involved in Integrin Signaling in the Fetal Cerebral Cortex
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2010, 7(11), 4023-4036; doi:10.3390/ijerph7114023
Received: 15 October 2010 / Revised: 3 November 2010 / Accepted: 16 November 2010 / Published: 17 November 2010
Cited by 5 | PDF Full-text (339 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Maternal alcohol consumption during pregnancy causes wide range of behavioral and structural deficits in children, commonly known as Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS). Children with FAS may suffer behavioral deficits in the absence of obvious malformations. In rodents, the exposure to alcohol during gestation
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Maternal alcohol consumption during pregnancy causes wide range of behavioral and structural deficits in children, commonly known as Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS). Children with FAS may suffer behavioral deficits in the absence of obvious malformations. In rodents, the exposure to alcohol during gestation changes brain structures and weights of offspring. The mechanism of FAS is not completely understood. In the present study, an established rat (Long-Evans) model of FAS was used. The litter size and the weights of mothers, fetuses and placentas were examined on gestation days 18 or 20. On gestation day 18, the effects of chronic alcohol on the expression levels of integrin receptor subunits, phospholipase-Cγ and N-cadherin were examined in the fetal cerebral cortices. Presence of alcohol in the liquid-diet reduced the consumption and decreased weights of mothers and fetuses but increased the placental weights. Expression levels of β1 and α3 integrin subunits and phospholipase-Cγ2 were significantly altered in the fetal cerebral cortices of mothers on alcohol containing diet. Results show that alcohol consumption during pregnancy even with protein, mineral and vitamin enriched diet may affect maternal and fetal health, and alter integrin receptor signaling pathways in the fetal cerebral cortex disturbing the development of fetal brains. Full article
Open AccessArticle Arsenic in Surface Soils Affected by Mining and Metallurgical Processing in K. Mitrovica Region, Kosovo
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2010, 7(11), 4050-4061; doi:10.3390/ijerph7114050
Received: 9 October 2010 / Revised: 25 October 2010 / Accepted: 16 November 2010 / Published: 18 November 2010
Cited by 11 | PDF Full-text (611 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The results of a study on the spatial distribution of arsenic in topsoil (0–5 cm) over the K. Mitrovica region, Kosovo, are reported. The investigated region (300 km2) was covered by a sampling grid of 1.4 km × 1.4 km. In
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The results of a study on the spatial distribution of arsenic in topsoil (0–5 cm) over the K. Mitrovica region, Kosovo, are reported. The investigated region (300 km2) was covered by a sampling grid of 1.4 km × 1.4 km. In total, 159 soil samples were collected from 149 locations. Inductively coupled plasma–mass spectrometry (ICP-MS) was applied for the determination of arsenic levels. It was found that the average content of arsenic in the topsoil for the entire study area was 30 mg/kg (from 2.1 to 3,900 mg/kg) which exceeds the estimated European arsenic average in topsoil by a factor of 4.3. Contents of arsenic in the topsoil exceeded the optimum value recommended by the new Dutchlist (29 mg/kg As) in 124 km2. The action value (55 mg/kg As) was exceeded in 64 km2, with the average content of 105 mg/kg (from 55 to 3,900 mg/kg As). Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Soil Pollution: Prevention and Mitigation)
Open AccessArticle Toxic Metals (Pb and Cd) and Their Respective Antagonists (Ca and Zn) in Infant Formulas and Milk Marketed in Brasilia, Brazil
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2010, 7(11), 4062-4077; doi:10.3390/ijerph7114062
Received: 15 October 2010 / Revised: 2 November 2010 / Accepted: 6 November 2010 / Published: 18 November 2010
Cited by 4 | PDF Full-text (265 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
In non-ideal scenarios involving partial or non-breastfeeding, cow’s milk-based dairy products are mainstream in infant feeding. Therefore, it is important to study the concentrations of potentially neurotoxic contaminants (Pb and Cd) and their respective counteracting elements (Ca and Zn) in infant dairy products.
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In non-ideal scenarios involving partial or non-breastfeeding, cow’s milk-based dairy products are mainstream in infant feeding. Therefore, it is important to study the concentrations of potentially neurotoxic contaminants (Pb and Cd) and their respective counteracting elements (Ca and Zn) in infant dairy products. Fifty-five brands of infant formulas and milk sold in Brasilia, Brazil were analyzed. The dairy products came from areas in the central-west (26%), southeast (29%) and south of Brazil (36%) extending as far as Argentina (7%) and the Netherlands (2%). For toxic Pb and Cd, median concentrations in powdered samples were 0.109 mg/kg and 0.033 mg/kg, respectively; in fluid samples median Pb concentration was 0.084 mg/kg, but median Cd concentration was below the limit of detection and overall values were below reference safety levels. However, 62% of these samples presented higher Pb concentration values than those established by FAO/WHO. Although the inverse correlation between Cd and Zn (Spearman r = −0.116; P = 0.590) was not statistically significant, the positive correlation between Ca and Pb was (Spearman r = 0.619; P < 0.0001). Additionally, there was a significant correlation between Pb and Cd. Furthermore, the study also revealed that provision of the essential trace element Zn in infant formulas can provide adequate amounts of the recommended daily requirements. Infant formulas and milk sold for consumption by infants and children can be an efficient tool to monitor neurotoxic metal risk exposure among young children. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biomarkers: Environmental Research and Public Health)
Open AccessArticle Ambient Ozone and Emergency Department Visits for Cellulitis
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2010, 7(11), 4078-4088; doi:10.3390/ijerph7114078
Received: 10 October 2010 / Revised: 12 November 2010 / Accepted: 16 November 2010 / Published: 19 November 2010
Cited by 13 | PDF Full-text (95 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Objectives were to assess and estimate an association between exposure to ground-level ozone and emergency department (ED) visits for cellulitis. All ED visits for cellulitis in Edmonton, Canada, in the period April 1992–March 2002 (N = 69,547) were examined. Case-crossover design was applied
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Objectives were to assess and estimate an association between exposure to ground-level ozone and emergency department (ED) visits for cellulitis. All ED visits for cellulitis in Edmonton, Canada, in the period April 1992–March 2002 (N = 69,547) were examined. Case-crossover design was applied to estimate odds ratio (OR, and 95% confidence interval) per one interquartile range (IQR) increase in ozone concentration (IQR = 14.0 ppb). Delay of ED visit relating to exposure was probed using 0- to 5-day exposure lags. For all patients in the all months (January–December) and lags 0 to 2 days, OR = 1.05 (1.02, 1.07). For male patients during the cold months (October-March): OR = 1.05 (1.02, 1.09) for lags 0 and 2 and OR = 1.06 (1.02, 1.10) for lag 3. For female patients in the warm months (April-September): OR = 1.12 (1.06, 1.18) for lags 1 and 2. Cellulitis developing on uncovered (more exposed) skin was analyzed separately, observed effects being stronger. Cellulitis may be associated with exposure to ambient ground level ozone; the exposure may facilitate cellulitis infection and aggravate acute symptoms. Full article
Open AccessArticle Impact of the New Malaysian Cigarette Pack Warnings on Smokers’ Awareness of Health Risks and Interest in Quitting Smoking
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2010, 7(11), 4089-4099; doi:10.3390/ijerph7114089
Received: 16 October 2010 / Revised: 10 November 2010 / Accepted: 16 November 2010 / Published: 22 November 2010
Cited by 15 | PDF Full-text (552 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The objective of this research was to compare the response of adult smokers in Malaysia to newly proposed pictorial cigarette warnings against the current text-only warnings. The study population included 140 adult male smokers who were enrolled in a randomized trial to view
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The objective of this research was to compare the response of adult smokers in Malaysia to newly proposed pictorial cigarette warnings against the current text-only warnings. The study population included 140 adult male smokers who were enrolled in a randomized trial to view either the new pictorial warnings (intervention) or the old text-only warnings (control). Participants completed pre-exposure and post-exposure questionnaires that assessed their awareness of the health risks of smoking, response to the package warnings, and interest in quitting smoking. Exposure to the pictorial warnings resulted in increased awareness of the risks of smoking, stronger behavioral response to the warnings and increased interest in quitting smoking. The new warnings in Malaysia will increase smokers’ knowledge of the adverse health effects of smoking and have a positive effect on interest in quitting. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Tobacco Smoking: Public Health, Science and Policy)

Review

Jump to: Research

Open AccessReview Human Health Risk Assessment of Pharmaceuticals in Water: Issues and Challenges Ahead
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2010, 7(11), 3929-3953; doi:10.3390/ijerph7113929
Received: 28 September 2010 / Revised: 22 October 2010 / Accepted: 29 October 2010 / Published: 5 November 2010
Cited by 20 | PDF Full-text (214 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
This study identified existing issues related to quantitative pharmaceutical risk assessment (QPhRA, hereafter) for pharmaceuticals in water and proposed possible solutions by analyzing methodologies and findings of different published QPhRA studies. Retrospective site-specific QPhRA studies from different parts of the world (U.S.A., United
[...] Read more.
This study identified existing issues related to quantitative pharmaceutical risk assessment (QPhRA, hereafter) for pharmaceuticals in water and proposed possible solutions by analyzing methodologies and findings of different published QPhRA studies. Retrospective site-specific QPhRA studies from different parts of the world (U.S.A., United Kingdom, Europe, India, etc.) were reviewed in a structured manner to understand different assumptions, outcomes obtained and issues, identified/addressed/raised by the different QPhRA studies. Till date, most of the published studies have concluded that there is no appreciable risk to human health during environmental exposures of pharmaceuticals; however, attention is still required to following identified issues: (1) Use of measured versus predicted pharmaceutical concentration, (2) Identification of pharmaceuticals-of-concern and compounds needing special considerations, (3) Use of source water versus finished drinking water-related exposure scenarios, (4) Selection of representative exposure routes, (5) Valuation of uncertainty factors, and (6) Risk assessment for mixture of chemicals. To close the existing data and methodology gaps, this study proposed possible ways to address and/or incorporation these considerations within the QPhRA framework; however, more research work is still required to address issues, such as incorporation of short-term to long-term extrapolation and mixture effects in the QPhRA framework. Specifically, this study proposed a development of a new “mixture effects-related uncertainty factor” for mixture of chemicals (i.e., mixUFcomposite), similar to an uncertainty factor of a single chemical, within the QPhRA framework. In addition to all five traditionally used uncertainty factors, this uncertainty factor is also proposed to include concentration effects due to presence of different range of concentration levels of pharmaceuticals in a mixture. However, further work is required to determine values of all six uncertainty factors and incorporate them to use during estimation of point-of-departure values within the QPhRA framework. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Drinking Water and Health)
Open AccessReview The Role of Cumulative Risk Assessment in Decisions about Environmental Justice
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2010, 7(11), 4037-4049; doi:10.3390/ijerph7114037
Received: 15 October 2010 / Revised: 29 October 2010 / Accepted: 17 November 2010 / Published: 18 November 2010
Cited by 24 | PDF Full-text (367 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
There is strong presumptive evidence that people living in poverty and certain racial and ethnic groups bear a disproportionate burden of environmental health risk. Many have argued that conducting formal assessments of the health risk experienced by affected communities is both unnecessary and
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There is strong presumptive evidence that people living in poverty and certain racial and ethnic groups bear a disproportionate burden of environmental health risk. Many have argued that conducting formal assessments of the health risk experienced by affected communities is both unnecessary and counterproductive—that instead of analyzing the situation our efforts should be devoted to fixing obvious problems and rectifying observable wrongs. We contend that formal assessment of cumulative health risks from combined effects of chemical and nonchemical stressors is a valuable tool to aid decision makers in choosing risk management options that are effective, efficient, and equitable. If used properly, cumulative risk assessment need not impair decision makers’ discretion, nor should it be used as an excuse for doing nothing in the face of evident harm. Good policy decisions require more than good intentions; they necessitate analysis of risk-related information along with careful consideration of economic issues, ethical and moral principles, legal precedents, political realities, cultural beliefs, societal values, and bureaucratic impediments. Cumulative risk assessment can provide a systematic and impartial means for informing policy decisions about environmental justice. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Environmental Justice)

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