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Open AccessArticle

Analytical Quality Requirements in Human Biomonitoring Programs: Trace Elements in Human Blood

1
‘Jožef Stefan’ Institute, Department of Environmental Sciences, Jamova cesta 39, SI-1000 Ljubljana, Slovenia
2
‘Jožef Stefan’ International Postgraduate School, Jamova cesta 39, SI-1000 Ljubljana, Slovenia
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(13), 2287; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16132287
Received: 15 May 2019 / Revised: 21 June 2019 / Accepted: 25 June 2019 / Published: 28 June 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Human Biomonitoring of Environmental and Occupational Exposures)
Human biomonitoring (HBM) programs consist of several interrelated and equally important steps. Of these steps, the study design must answer a specific question: How many individuals must be recruited in order to define the spatial or temporal trends of exposure to environmental pollutants in a given HBM study? Two components must be considered at this stage: the population variability of the expected exposure and the performance characteristics of the analytical methods used. The objective of the present study was to quantify the contribution to the required sample size arising from (i) measurement uncertainty and (ii) inter-laboratory measurement variability. For this purpose, the sample size was calculated using the measurement uncertainty of one laboratory, inter-laboratory comparison exercise data, and population variability for commonly studied metals (mercury, cadmium, and lead) in blood. Measurement uncertainty within one laboratory proved to have little influence on the sample size requirements, while the inter-laboratory variability of the three metals increased the requirements considerably, particularly in cases of low population variability. The multiple laboratories approach requires that laboratory variability be considered as early as the planning stage; a single-laboratory approach is thus a cost-effective compromise in HBM to reduce variability due to the participation of different laboratories. View Full-Text
Keywords: human biomonitoring; inter-laboratory comparison; measurement uncertainty; quality control; sample size; trace elements human biomonitoring; inter-laboratory comparison; measurement uncertainty; quality control; sample size; trace elements
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MDPI and ACS Style

Snoj Tratnik, J.; Mazej, D.; Horvat, M. Analytical Quality Requirements in Human Biomonitoring Programs: Trace Elements in Human Blood. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16, 2287. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16132287

AMA Style

Snoj Tratnik J, Mazej D, Horvat M. Analytical Quality Requirements in Human Biomonitoring Programs: Trace Elements in Human Blood. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. 2019; 16(13):2287. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16132287

Chicago/Turabian Style

Snoj Tratnik, Janja; Mazej, Darja; Horvat, Milena. 2019. "Analytical Quality Requirements in Human Biomonitoring Programs: Trace Elements in Human Blood" Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 16, no. 13: 2287. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16132287

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