Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health2015, 12(5), 5657-5684; doi:10.3390/ijerph120505657 - published 22 May 2015 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: Triclosan (TCS) is a multi-purpose antimicrobial agent used as a common ingredient in everyday household personal care and consumer products. The expanded use of TCS provides a number of pathways for the compound to enter the environment and it has been detected in sewage treatment plant effluents; surface; ground and drinking water. The physico-chemical properties indicate the bioaccumulation and persistence potential of TCS in the environment. Hence, there is an increasing concern about the presence of TCS in the environment and its potential negative effects on human and animal health. Nevertheless, scarce monitoring data could be one reason for not prioritizing TCS as emerging contaminant. Conventional water and wastewater treatment processes are unable to completely remove the TCS and even form toxic intermediates. Considering the worldwide application of personal care products containing TCS and inefficient removal and its toxic effects on aquatic organisms, the compound should be considered on the priority list of emerging contaminants and its utilization in all products should be regulated.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health2015, 12(5), 5634-5656; doi:10.3390/ijerph120505634 - published 22 May 2015 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: Exposure assessment is a crucial part in studying potential effects of RF-EMF. Using data from the HERMES study on adolescents, we developed an integrative exposure surrogate combining near-field and far-field RF-EMF exposure in a single brain and whole-body exposure measure. Contributions from far-field sources were modelled by propagation modelling and multivariable regression modelling using personal measurements. Contributions from near-field sources were assessed from both, questionnaires and mobile phone operator records. Mean cumulative brain and whole-body doses were 1559.7 mJ/kg and 339.9 mJ/kg per day, respectively. 98.4% of the brain dose originated from near-field sources, mainly from GSM mobile phone calls (93.1%) and from DECT phone calls (4.8%). Main contributors to the whole-body dose were GSM mobile phone calls (69.0%), use of computer, laptop and tablet connected to WLAN (12.2%) and data traffic on the mobile phone via WLAN (6.5%). The exposure from mobile phone base stations contributed 1.8% to the whole-body dose, while uplink exposure from other people’s mobile phones contributed 3.6%. In conclusion, the proposed approach is considered useful to combine near-field and far-field exposure to an integrative exposure surrogate for exposure assessment in epidemiologic studies. However, substantial uncertainties remain about exposure contributions from various near-field and far-field sources.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health2015, 12(5), 5614-5633; doi:10.3390/ijerph120505614 - published 22 May 2015 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: The aim of this study was to estimate both the contribution of drinking water and food (raw and cooked) to the total (t-As) and inorganic (i-As) arsenic intake and the exposure of inhabitants of Socaire, a rural village in Chile´s Antofagasta Region, by using urine as biomarker. The i-As intake from food and water was estimated using samples collected between November 2008 and September 2009. A 24-hour dietary recall questionnaire was given to 20 participants. Drinking water, food (raw and cooked) and urine samples were collected directly from the homes where the interviewees lived. The percentage of i-As/t-As in the drinking water that contributed to the total intake was variable (26.8–92.9). Cereals and vegetables are the food groups that contain higher concentrations of i-As. All of the participants interviewed exceeded the reference intake FAO/OMS (149.8 µg∙i-As·day−1) by approximately nine times. The concentration of t-As in urine in each individual ranged from 78 to 459 ng·mL−1. Estimated As intake from drinking water and food was not associated with total urinary As concentration. The results show that both drinking water and food substantially contribute to i-As intake and an increased exposure risk to adult residents in contaminated areas.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health2015, 12(5), 5603-5613; doi:10.3390/ijerph120505603 - published 22 May 2015 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: Objective: To evaluate whether the season of birth and sex are associated with preferences for bedtime among Chinese adults. Methods: A national population-based study on sleep preferences was conducted among Chinese in 2008. A questionnaire was used to collect information on the sleep time of Chinese adults. Analysis of covariance was used to examine the relationship between season of birth and preferences for bedtime. Two sets of potential confounders were used in the adjusted models. Model 1 adjusted for age. Model 2 additionally adjusted for area, occupation, education level, smoking, and drinking. Participants and Measurements: The questionnaire was administered to a sample of 3959 Chinese adults. Results: Men had a higher delayed mean sleep onset and offset time (22:38 and 6:32) than women (22:18 and 6:25). Men also slept for a shorter duration compared to women (7 h 54 min vs. 8 h 7 min). Women born in fall had the latest sleep onset time sleep offset time (22:23/6:30), compared to their counterparts born in winter. These associations were attenuated by additional adjustments of more confounders. Conclusions: There were significant differences in sleep timing preferences between men and women. Season of birth was not associated with sleep timing in Chinese adults.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health2015, 12(5), 5581-5602; doi:10.3390/ijerph120505581 - published 22 May 2015 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: Predictions of environmental concentrations of engineered nanomaterials (ENM) are needed for their environmental risk assessment. Because analytical data on ENM-concentrations in the environment are not yet available, exposure modeling represents the only source of information on ENM exposure in the environment. This work provides material flow data and environmental concentrations of nine ENM in Denmark. It represents the first study that distinguishes between photostable TiO2 (as used in sunscreens) and photocatalytic TiO2 (as used in self-cleaning surfaces). It also provides first exposure estimates for quantum dots, carbon black and CuCO3. Other ENM that are covered are ZnO, Ag, CNT and CeO2. The modeling is based for all ENM on probability distributions of production, use, environmental release and transfer between compartments, always considering the complete life-cycle of products containing the ENM. The magnitude of flows and concentrations of the various ENM depends on the one hand on the production volume but also on the type of products they are used in and the life-cycles of these products and their potential for release. The results reveal that in aquatic systems the highest concentrations are expected for carbon black and photostable TiO2, followed by CuCO3 (under the assumption that the use as wood preservative becomes important). In sludge-treated soil highest concentrations are expected for CeO2 and TiO2. Transformation during water treatments results in extremely low concentrations of ZnO and Ag in the environment. The results of this study provide valuable environmental exposure information for future risk assessments of these ENM.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health2015, 12(5), 5561-5580; doi:10.3390/ijerph120505561 - published 22 May 2015 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: Background: Neighborhood characteristics may contribute to adiposity in young children, but results in the current literature are inconsistent. This study aimed to investigate whether objective (socioeconomic status (SES)) and subjective (perceived safety, satisfaction with green spaces and perceived physical disorder) neighborhood characteristics directly influence child adiposity (as measured by BMI, percent body fat (%BF) and waist-to-height ratio (WHtR)). Methods: Data on child BMI, %BF and WHtR were obtained from the Amsterdam Born Children and their Development cohort at 5–6 years of age. Three thousand four hundred and sixty nine (3469) children were included in the analyses. Mixed models, using random intercepts for postal code area to account for neighborhood clustering effects, were used to analyze the relationships of interest. Results: Associations were observed for both perceived safety and neighborhood SES with %BF after adjustment for maternal education and ethnicity. All relationships were eliminated with the inclusion of individual covariates and parental BMI into the models. Conclusions: In general, child adiposity at age 5–6 years was not independently associated with neighborhood characteristics, although a small relationship between child %BF and both neighborhood SES and perceived safety cannot be ruled out. At this young age, familial and individual factors probably play a more important role in influencing child adiposity than neighborhood characteristics.