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Special Issue "Toxicology and Environmental Epidemiology: Feature Papers"

A special issue of International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health (ISSN 1660-4601). This special issue belongs to the section "Toxicology and Public Health".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (30 June 2021).

Special Issue Editors

Dr. Juan Pedro Arrebola
E-Mail Website1 Website2
Guest Editor
Department of Preventive Medicine and Public Health, University of Granada. Biomedical Research Institute ibs.GRANADA Avenida de la Investigación nº 11 18071, Granada, Spain
Interests: environmental epidemiology; persistent organic pollutants; metals; emerging chemical contaminants; metabolic syndrome; cancer; metabolic and endocrine disruption
Dr. Vicente Mustieles
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Radiology and Physical Medicine, University of Granada, Granada, Spain
Interests: environmental pollution; biomarkers; neurodevelopmental disorders; environmental toxicology; reproductive epidemiology; developmental health

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

We are pleased to announce the Special Issue entitled “Toxicology and Environmental Epidemiology”. This is a collection of important high-quality papers (original research articles, comprehensive review papers, case reports, ect.) published in Open Access form by Editorial Board Members, or prominent scholars invited by Guest Editors, Editorial Board Members, and the Editorial Office. This Special Issue aims to discuss new knowledge or new cutting-edge developments in Toxicology and Environmental Epidemiology through selected works, which will make a great contribution to the community.

Human populations are continuously exposed to complex mixtures of environmental chemicals (ECs) through all exposure routes and uncountable sources. Thus, there is a need for characterization of exposure levels to both legacy and emergent contaminants in all population groups, as well as their potential health implications. This needs to be done from multidisciplinary perspectives, in scenarios where in vitro, in vivo, computational, and epidemiological approaches converge to give robust answers. In addition, research in this field should consider the social dimension of environmental exposures in order to achieve effective public health interventions.

This Special Issue will gather a variety of interrelated works from basic science to epidemiological research, including social research. We aim to provide an optimal forum for disseminating excellent research findings as well as sharing innovative ideas in the field.

Papers could be either research papers with a detailed summary of their own work done so far or papers highlighting the state-of-the-art developments in “Toxicology and Environmental Epidemiology”. In order to benefit both authors and readers, we would like to grant a discount for submissions based on evaluation.

The Special Issue will cover the following priority areas:

  1. Human exposure assessment to environmental pollutants, including biomonitoring;
  2. Research on emerging pollutants and identification of overlooked pollutants, as well as their most relevant exposure sources;
  3. Synergizing toxicological and epidemiological knowledge under the frameworks of systems toxicology and adverse outcome pathway (AOP) networks;
  4. Preclinical effect biomarkers to individual contaminants and their mixtures;
  5. Novel statistical approaches in epidemiologic settings;
  6. Nontarget chemical analysis to identify novel/emerging chemicals and their metabolites;
  7. Advancing the extrapolation of low-dose results from in vitro and animal studies to human populations;
  8. Better understanding of susceptible windows of development throughout the lifespan: starting from preconception, through pregnancy, childhood, and adolescence, to adulthood and the elderly;
  9. Exploring the role of ECs on the microbiota, and its implications for human health;
  10. Development of preventive actions (e.g., clinical and community guidelines for preventing exposures);
  11. Better understanding of the social aspects related environmental exposures;
  12. Research focused on regulatory aspects.

You are welcome to send a tentative title and a short abstract to our Editorial Office ([email protected]) or the corresponding assistant editor Ms. Ada Wang ([email protected]) for evaluation before submission. Please note that selected full papers will still be subjected to a thorough and rigorous peer-review.

We look forward to receiving your excellent work.

Dr. Juan Pedro Arrebola
Dr. Vicente Mustieles
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2300 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • Environmental epidemiology
  • Endocrine disruption
  • Food toxicology
  • Systems toxicology
  • Genetic toxicology
  • Biomarkers
  • Nanotoxicology
  • Chemical and metal toxicology
  • Reproductive and developmental toxicology
  • Risk assessment
  • Risk management
  • Social and economic dimensions
  • Other areas

Published Papers (15 papers)

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Research

Jump to: Review

Article
Toxicity of a Binary Mixture of TiO2 and Imidacloprid Applied to Chlorella vulgaris
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(15), 7785; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18157785 - 22 Jul 2021
Viewed by 899
Abstract
Nanoparticles have applications in various fields such as manufacturing and materials synthesis, the environment, electronics, energy harvesting, and medicine. Besides many applications of nanoparticles, further research is required for toxic environmental effect investigation. The toxic effect of titanium dioxide nanoparticles on the physiology [...] Read more.
Nanoparticles have applications in various fields such as manufacturing and materials synthesis, the environment, electronics, energy harvesting, and medicine. Besides many applications of nanoparticles, further research is required for toxic environmental effect investigation. The toxic effect of titanium dioxide nanoparticles on the physiology of the green alga Chlorella vulgaris was studied with a widely used pesticide, imidacloprid (IMD). Chlorella vulgaris was exposed for 120 h in Bold’s basal medium to different toxic compounds, such as (i) a high concentration of TiO2 nanoparticles, 150–2000 mg/L, usually optimised in the photocatalytic degradation of wastewater, (ii) an extremely toxic pesticide for the aquatic environment, imidacloprid, in concentrations ranging from 5 to 40 mg/L, (iii) TiO2 nanoparticles combined with imidacloprid, usually used in a photocatalytic system. The results show that the TiO2 nanoparticles and IMD inhibited Chlorella vulgaris cell growth and decreased the biovolume by approximately 80% when 2 g/L TiO2 was used, meaning that the cells devised a mechanism to cope with a potentially stressful situation; 120 h of Chlorella vulgaris exposure to 40 mg/L of IMD resulted in a 16% decreased cell diameter and a 41% decrease in cell volume relative to the control sample, associated with the toxic effect of pesticides on the cells. Our study confirms the toxicity of nanoparticles through algal growth inhibition with an effective concentration (EC50) value measured after 72 h of 388.14 mg/L for TiO2 and 13 mg/L for IMD in a single-toxic system. The EC50 of TiO2 slowly decreased from 258.42 to 311.11 mg/L when IMD from 5 to 20 mg/L was added to the binary-toxic system. The concentration of TiO2 in the binary-toxic system did not change the EC50 for IMD, and its value was 0.019 g/L. The photodegradation process of imidacloprid (range of 5–40 mg/L) was also investigated in the algal medium incubated with 150–600 mg/L of titanium dioxide. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Toxicology and Environmental Epidemiology: Feature Papers)
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Article
Perception and Demands of Pregnant and Breastfeeding Women Regarding Their Role as Participants in Environmental Research Studies
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(8), 4149; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18084149 - 14 Apr 2021
Viewed by 1272
Abstract
A significant proportion of scientific studies consider pregnant and breastfeeding women as vulnerable subjects. The objective of this study was to analyse the perception of pregnant and breastfeeding women regarding their participation in environmental research studies. Our work is a descriptive and interpretative [...] Read more.
A significant proportion of scientific studies consider pregnant and breastfeeding women as vulnerable subjects. The objective of this study was to analyse the perception of pregnant and breastfeeding women regarding their participation in environmental research studies. Our work is a descriptive and interpretative observational study that has been developed under the qualitative research paradigm following a phenomenological and ethnographic perspective. The study involved 173 women selected intentionally in two Spanish autonomous communities. To obtain the primary data, we relied upon 111 interviews, four focused ethnographies and eight focus groups. The data encoding and analysis was carried out with the help of NVivo 12 software (QSR International, Boston, MA, USA). We evidenced the need of pregnant and breastfeeding women for more detailed and accurate information on the risk of environmental pollutant exposure during their crucial life stage. In addition, these women claimed for a more participatory role in research studies. Pregnant and breastfeeding women in Spain ask for greater interaction with researchers and propose a dialogical relationship between valid partners. We conclude that our pregnant and breastfeeding women claim more research focused on their collective, as well as clearer, more accessible and structured information on the risks of exposure to environmental contaminants. In addition, they do not want to simply be informants; rather, they ask to be active and empowered members by providing their opinions and arguments throughout the research process. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Toxicology and Environmental Epidemiology: Feature Papers)
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Article
Feasibility Assessment of Wearable Respiratory Monitors for Ambulatory Inhalation Topography
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(6), 2990; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18062990 - 14 Mar 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 892
Abstract
Background: Natural environment inhalation topography provides useful information for toxicant exposure, risk assessment and cardiopulmonary performance. Commercially available wearable respiratory monitors (WRMs), which are currently used to measure a variety of physiological parameters such as heart rate and breathing frequency, can be [...] Read more.
Background: Natural environment inhalation topography provides useful information for toxicant exposure, risk assessment and cardiopulmonary performance. Commercially available wearable respiratory monitors (WRMs), which are currently used to measure a variety of physiological parameters such as heart rate and breathing frequency, can be leveraged to obtain inhalation topography, yet little work has been done. This paper assesses the feasibility of adapting these WRMs for measuring inhalation topography. Methods: Commercially available WRMs were compiled and assessed for the ability to report chest motion, data analysis software features, ambulatory observation capabilities, participant acceptability, purchasing constraints and affordability. Results: The following WRMs were found: LifeShirt, Equivital EQ02 LifeMonitor, Smartex WWS, Hexoskin Smart Garment, Zephyr BioHarness, Nox T3&A1, BioRadio, SleepSense Inductance Band, and ezRIP & zRIP Durabelt. None of the WRMs satisfied all six assessment criteria in a manner enabling them to be used for inhalation topography without modification and development. Conclusions: The results indicate that there are WRMs with core technologies and characteristics that can be built upon for ambulatory inhalation topography measurement in the NE. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Toxicology and Environmental Epidemiology: Feature Papers)
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Article
Evaluation of Gonadal Alterations in a Population Environmentally Exposed to a Mixture of Endocrine Active Pesticides
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(5), 2355; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18052355 - 28 Feb 2021
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 773
Abstract
Although there are studies that show that some pesticides produce gonadal dysfunction and gonadal cancer in different animals, there are not many studiesregardinghumans. This study determined the prevalence and risk in humans of developing ovarian or testicular dysfunction or cancer in areas with [...] Read more.
Although there are studies that show that some pesticides produce gonadal dysfunction and gonadal cancer in different animals, there are not many studiesregardinghumans. This study determined the prevalence and risk in humans of developing ovarian or testicular dysfunction or cancer in areas with distinct exposure to pesticides, which have endocrine disrupting properties. A population-based case-control study was carried out on humans living in ten health districts of Andalusia (Southern Spain) classified as areas of high or low environmental exposure to pesticides according to agronomic criteria. The study population included 5332 cases and 13,606 controls. Data were collected from computerized hospital records between 2000 and 2018.The risk of gonadal dysfunction or cancer was significantly higher in areas with higher use of pesticides in relation to those with lower use. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Toxicology and Environmental Epidemiology: Feature Papers)
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Article
Chemical Exposure: European Citizens’ Perspectives, Trust, and Concerns on Human Biomonitoring Initiatives, Information Needs, and Scientific Results
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(4), 1532; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18041532 - 05 Feb 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1352
Abstract
Over the last few decades, citizen awareness and perception of chemical products has been a topic of interest, particularly concerning national and international policy decision makers, expert/scientific platforms, and the European Union itself. To date, few qualitative studies on human biomonitoring have analysed [...] Read more.
Over the last few decades, citizen awareness and perception of chemical products has been a topic of interest, particularly concerning national and international policy decision makers, expert/scientific platforms, and the European Union itself. To date, few qualitative studies on human biomonitoring have analysed communication materials, made recommendations in terms of biomonitoring surveillance, or asked for feedback in terms of specific biomonitoring methods. This paper provides in-depth insight on citizens’ perceptions of knowledge of biomonitoring, impact of chemical exposure on daily life, and claims on how results of research should be used. Four semi-structured focus groups were held in Austria, Portugal, Ireland, and the United Kingdom (UK). The cross-sectional observational qualitative design of this study allows for better understanding of public concern regarding chemicals, application, and use of human biomonitoring. The main findings of this study include citizens’ clear articulation on pathways of exposure, the demand on stakeholders for transparent decision-making, and sensitivity in communication of results to the public. Validated and trustful communication is perceived as key to empowering citizens to take action. The results can be used to facilitate decision-making and policy development, and feeds into the awareness needs of similar and future projects in human biomonitoring. Furthermore, it also brings to light ideas and concepts of citizens’ in shaping collaborative knowledge between citizens’, experts, scientists, and policy makers on equal terms. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Toxicology and Environmental Epidemiology: Feature Papers)
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Article
Residential Radon in Manizales, Colombia: Results of a Pilot Study
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(3), 1228; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18031228 - 29 Jan 2021
Viewed by 1156
Abstract
Radon is a colorless, odorless, and tasteless noble gas, causally related with the onset of lung cancer. We aimed to describe the distribution of radon exposure in the municipality of Manizales, Colombia, in order to estimate the population’s exposure and establish the percentage [...] Read more.
Radon is a colorless, odorless, and tasteless noble gas, causally related with the onset of lung cancer. We aimed to describe the distribution of radon exposure in the municipality of Manizales, Colombia, in order to estimate the population’s exposure and establish the percentage of dwellings that surpass reference levels. A cross-sectional study representing all geographical areas was carried out by measuring indoor radon concentrations. Participants answered a short questionnaire. Alpha-track type radon detectors were installed in all residences for six months. The detectors were subsequently processed at the Galician Radon Laboratory, an accredited laboratory at the University of Santiago de Compostela. A total of 202 homes were measured. Seventy-seven percent of the sampled houses were three stories high, their median age was 30 years, and half were inhabited by three people or fewer. For most dwellings, the building materials of walls and flooring were brick and covered cement, respectively. Results showed a geometric mean of radon concentration of 8.5 Bq/m3 and a maximum value of 50 Bq/m3. No statistically significant differences were found either between the geometric mean of the dwelling’s site, the height at which detectors were placed inside the home, or the wall and flooring materials, or between mean 222Rn concentrations in rural and urban areas. No dwelling surpassed the 222Rn reference level established by the WHO. This study shows that residential radon levels in Manizales, Colombia, seem to be low, though a more in-depth approach should be carried out. Despite these results, it is essential to create a national radon program and establish a radon concentration reference level for Colombia in line with international recommendations. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Toxicology and Environmental Epidemiology: Feature Papers)
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Article
B-Comet Assay (Comet Assay on Buccal Cells) for the Evaluation of Primary DNA Damage in Human Biomonitoring Studies
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(24), 9234; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph17249234 - 10 Dec 2020
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 776
Abstract
Many subjects perceive venous blood collection as too invasive, and thus moving to better-accepted procedures for leukocytes collection might be crucial in human biomonitoring studies (e.g., biomonitoring of occupational or residential exposure to genotoxins) management. In this context, primary DNA damage was assessed [...] Read more.
Many subjects perceive venous blood collection as too invasive, and thus moving to better-accepted procedures for leukocytes collection might be crucial in human biomonitoring studies (e.g., biomonitoring of occupational or residential exposure to genotoxins) management. In this context, primary DNA damage was assessed in buccal lymphocytes (BLs), fresh whole venous, and capillary blood leukocytes, and compared with that in peripheral blood lymphocytes (PBLs)—the most frequently used cells—in 15 young subjects. Mouthwashes were collected after the volunteers rinsed their mouths with normal saline, and BLs were isolated by density gradient centrifugation. Blood samples were collected by venipuncture or by lancet. Anthropometric and lifestyle information was obtained by the administration of a structured questionnaire. As shown in the Bland-Altman plots, the level of agreement between BLs and PBLs lied within the accepted range, we thus enrolled a wider population (n = 54) to assess baseline DNA damage in BLs. In these cells, mean values of tail length (µm), tail intensity (%), and tail moment were 25.7 ± 0.9, 6.7 ± 0.4 and 1.0 ± 0.1, respectively. No significant association was observed between sex and smoking habit with any of the DNA damage parameters. Conversely, underweight subjects displayed significantly higher genomic instability compared with normal weight group (p < 0.05). In conclusion, we successfully managed to set up and update a non-invasive and well-accepted procedure for the isolation of BLs from saliva that could be useful in upcoming biomonitoring studies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Toxicology and Environmental Epidemiology: Feature Papers)
Article
Motivating Pregnant and Breastfeeding Women in Spain to Avoid Persistent Toxic Substances in Their Diet
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(23), 8719; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph17238719 - 24 Nov 2020
Viewed by 918
Abstract
The objective of this study was to explore what motivates pregnant and breastfeeding women to make changes in their diet, specifically to examine how their perceptions regarding diet facilitate or act as obstacles to introducing healthy eating habits. For the optimal development of [...] Read more.
The objective of this study was to explore what motivates pregnant and breastfeeding women to make changes in their diet, specifically to examine how their perceptions regarding diet facilitate or act as obstacles to introducing healthy eating habits. For the optimal development of the mother, the fetus, or breastfeeding baby, it is important to avoid foods containing substances, such as persistent toxic substances (PTSs), that are harmful to health during pregnancy and after the baby’s birth. This study used a qualitative research methodology, based on semi-structured individual interviews, food diaries, free lists, and focus groups with 111 pregnant and breastfeeding women in Spain. This approach was followed by a systematic and exhaustive exploitation of the qualitative data obtained, following the methodological principles of grounded theory. From the study results, we conclude that the motivation for a change in diet to avoid PTSs is based on the desire to promote good health, beliefs about the importance of having a varied diet, and the avoidance of potential risks. The main obstacles to change can be attributed to inadequate information, contradictory discourses, and socioeconomic difficulties. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Toxicology and Environmental Epidemiology: Feature Papers)
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Article
Prenatal Exposure to Gutkha, a Globally Relevant Smokeless Tobacco Product, Induces Hepatic Changes in Adult Mice
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(21), 7895; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph17217895 - 28 Oct 2020
Viewed by 674
Abstract
Maternal exposures during pregnancy affect the onset and progression of adult diseases in the offspring. A prior mouse study indicated that maternal tobacco smoke exposure affects hepatic fibrosis in adult offspring. Gutkha, a broadly used smokeless tobacco (ST) product, is widely used by [...] Read more.
Maternal exposures during pregnancy affect the onset and progression of adult diseases in the offspring. A prior mouse study indicated that maternal tobacco smoke exposure affects hepatic fibrosis in adult offspring. Gutkha, a broadly used smokeless tobacco (ST) product, is widely used by pregnant woman in many countries. The objective of this murine study was to evaluate whether oral maternal exposure to gutkha during pregnancy alters non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) in adult offspring: risk factors for the progression of NAFLD to cirrhosis in adults remain elusive. Buccal cavity ‘painting’ of pregnant mice with gutkha began on gestational days (GD) 2–4 and continued until parturition. Beginning at 12 weeks of age, a subset of offspring were transitioned to a high-fat diet (HFD). Results demonstrated that prenatal exposure to gutkha followed by an HFD in adulthood significantly increased the histologic evidence of fatty liver disease only in adult male offspring. Changes in hepatic fibrosis-related cytokines (interleukin (IL)-1b and IL-6) and in hepatic collagen mRNA expression were observed when comparing adult male offspring exposed to gutkha in utero to those not exposed. These findings indicate that maternal use of gutkha during pregnancy affects NAFLD in adult offspring in a sex-dependent manner. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Toxicology and Environmental Epidemiology: Feature Papers)
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Article
Body Representations of Internal Pollution: The Risk Perception of the Circulation of Environmental Contaminants in Pregnant and Breastfeeding Women in Spain
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(18), 6544; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph17186544 - 08 Sep 2020
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 846
Abstract
In this article, we analyze how pregnant and breastfeeding women perceive the inside of their bodies as well as their thoughts regarding the accumulation and elimination of chemical compounds present in food, and how these are then transmitted to the fetus. We explore [...] Read more.
In this article, we analyze how pregnant and breastfeeding women perceive the inside of their bodies as well as their thoughts regarding the accumulation and elimination of chemical compounds present in food, and how these are then transmitted to the fetus. We explore different social perceptions of risk regarding the circulation of chemical compounds inside the body using qualitative research based on the technique of body mapping, comprised of women’s figures of their bodies in combination with comments on the figures, food diaries and narratives from in-depth interviews. We examine how these 41 women (21 pregnant and 20 breastfeeding) perceive the body’s internal mechanisms during the stages of pregnancy and breastfeeding, as well as the circulation of chemical contaminants within it. The body mapping technique allowed us to analyze participants’ knowledge of internal pollution, a little-understood process in society. Thanks to these pregnant and breastfeeding women, who made an effort to represent and reflect on these new risks, this study shows that scientists and obstetricians need to collaborate with women in order to better understand and publicize the risks of internal pollution. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Toxicology and Environmental Epidemiology: Feature Papers)
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Article
Urinary Arsenic Species are Detectable in Urban Underserved Hispanic/Latino Populations: A Pilot Study from the Study of Latinos: Nutrition & Physical Activity Assessment Study (SOLNAS)
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(7), 2247; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph17072247 - 27 Mar 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1053
Abstract
Background: Hispanics/Latinos represent >15% of the United States (US) population and experience a high burden of cardiovascular disease (CVD) and diabetes. Dietary exposure, particularly to arsenic (As), may be associated with CVD and diabetes in Hispanics/Latinos. Rural populations in the US exposed to [...] Read more.
Background: Hispanics/Latinos represent >15% of the United States (US) population and experience a high burden of cardiovascular disease (CVD) and diabetes. Dietary exposure, particularly to arsenic (As), may be associated with CVD and diabetes in Hispanics/Latinos. Rural populations in the US exposed to As in drinking water have increased risk of diabetes and CVD; however, little is known about the risk among urban populations with low As in water who are mostly exposed to As through food. Methods: To explore the levels of inorganic arsenic exposure (the sum of inorganic and methylated arsenic species in urine, ∑As, corrected by a residual-based method) in persons of Hispanic/Latino origin, we conducted a pilot study quantifying urinary arsenic levels among 45 participants in the Study of Latinos: Nutrition & Physical Activity Assessment Study (SOLNAS). Results: The median (interquartile range) of the urinary arsenic species (µg/L) were as follows: inorganic As 0.6 (0.4, 1.0), monomethylarsonic acid 1.2 (0.7, 1.9), dimethylarsinic acid 7.2 (4.3, 15.3), and ∑As 6.0 (4.3, 10.5). Conclusions: This study adds to the existing evidence that harmful forms of arsenic are present in this group of Hispanics/Latinos. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Toxicology and Environmental Epidemiology: Feature Papers)
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Article
Cancer and Non-Cancer Risk Concerns from Metals in Electronic Cigarette Liquids and Aerosols
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(6), 2146; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph17062146 - 24 Mar 2020
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 1829
Abstract
We evaluated metal concentrations in e-liquids and e-aerosols from eight studies and estimated the range of corresponding cancer and non-cancer risks. Chromium and nickel were the leading contributors to cancer risk, with minor contributions from cadmium, lead, and arsenic. The increased cancer risks, [...] Read more.
We evaluated metal concentrations in e-liquids and e-aerosols from eight studies and estimated the range of corresponding cancer and non-cancer risks. Chromium and nickel were the leading contributors to cancer risk, with minor contributions from cadmium, lead, and arsenic. The increased cancer risks, assuming exposure to 2 mL/day, ranged from 5.7 to 30,000 additional cancers in a million e-cigarette users. The average cancer risk was 3 in 1000. Cancer risks in the mid to upper end of these ranges exceed acceptable levels. The hazard quotient (HQ) approach was used to evaluate non-cancer risks. Hazard quotients exceeding 1.0 indicate the possibility for non-cancer adverse health effects. Estimated exposures at the maximum reported concentrations of nickel, chromium, and manganese resulted in HQ values of 161, 1.1, and 1.0, respectively, with additional contributions from lead. The average concentration of nickel resulted in an HQ value of 14. We conclude from these studies that exposure to metals in e-cigarette liquids and aerosols may pose a significant cancer and non-cancer health risk at the mid and upper end of the reported ranges. The device design and heating elements appear to be the main source of metals in e-aerosols. The large range of metals within and across e-cigarette brands indicate the need for improvements in product design, enforced product safety regulations and manufacturing quality control. Implementation of such measures could reduce metal exposure in e-cigarette users. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Toxicology and Environmental Epidemiology: Feature Papers)

Review

Jump to: Research

Review
Systematic Review of Human Poisoning and Toxic Exposures in Myanmar
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(7), 3576; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18073576 - 30 Mar 2021
Viewed by 815
Abstract
The International Health Regulations (2005) promote national capacity in core institutions so that countries can better detect, respond to and recover from public health emergencies. In accordance with the ‘all hazards’ approach to public health risk, this systematic review examines poisoning and toxic [...] Read more.
The International Health Regulations (2005) promote national capacity in core institutions so that countries can better detect, respond to and recover from public health emergencies. In accordance with the ‘all hazards’ approach to public health risk, this systematic review examines poisoning and toxic exposures in Myanmar. A systematic literature search was undertaken to find articles pertaining to poisoning in Myanmar published between 1998 and 2020. A number of poisoning risks are identified in this review, including snakebites, heavy metals, drugs of abuse, agrochemicals and traditional medicine. Patterns of poisoning presented in the literature diverge from poisoning priorities reported in other lower-middle income countries in the region. The experience of professionals working in a Yangon-based poison treatment unit also indicate that frequently observed poisoning as a result of pharmaceuticals, methanol, and petroleum products was absent from the literature. Other notable gaps in the available research include assessments of the public health burden of poisoning through self-harm, household exposures to chemicals, paediatric risk and women’s occupational risk of poisoning. There is a limited amount of research available on poisoning outcomes and routes of exposure in Myanmar. Further investigation and research are warranted to provide a more complete assessment of poisoning risk and incidence. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Toxicology and Environmental Epidemiology: Feature Papers)
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Review
Recent Developments in the Determination of Biomarkers of Tobacco Smoke Exposure in Biological Specimens: A Review
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(4), 1768; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18041768 - 11 Feb 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1017
Abstract
Environmental tobacco smoke exposure (ETS) and smoking have been described as the most prevalent factors in the development of certain diseases worldwide. According to the World Health Organization, more than 8 million people die every year due to exposure to tobacco, around 7 [...] Read more.
Environmental tobacco smoke exposure (ETS) and smoking have been described as the most prevalent factors in the development of certain diseases worldwide. According to the World Health Organization, more than 8 million people die every year due to exposure to tobacco, around 7 million due to direct ETS and the remaining due to exposure to second-hand smoke. Both active and second-hand exposure can be measured and controlled using specific biomarkers of tobacco and its derivatives, allowing the development of more efficient public health policies. Exposure to these compounds can be measured using different methods (involving for instance liquid- or gas-chromatographic procedures) in a wide range of biological specimens to estimate the type and degree of tobacco exposure. In recent years, a lot of research has been carried out using different extraction methods and different analytical equipment; this way, liquid–liquid extraction, solid-phase extraction or even miniaturized procedures have been used, followed by chromatographic analysis coupled mainly to mass spectrometric detection. Through this type of methodologies, second-hand smokers can be distinguished from active smokers, and this is also valid for e-cigarettes and vapers, among others, using their specific biomarkers. This review will focus on recent developments in the determination of tobacco smoke biomarkers, including nicotine and other tobacco alkaloids, specific nitrosamines, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, etc. The methods for their detection will be discussed in detail, as well as the potential use of threshold values to distinguish between types of exposure. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Toxicology and Environmental Epidemiology: Feature Papers)
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Review
Residential Radon in Central and South America: A Systematic Review
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(12), 4550; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph17124550 - 24 Jun 2020
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1284
Abstract
Radon gas is a pulmonary carcinogen and the second leading cause of lung cancer after smoking. There are many countries that have not implemented measures to reduce the risk it poses to the general population. The aim of this study was to locate [...] Read more.
Radon gas is a pulmonary carcinogen and the second leading cause of lung cancer after smoking. There are many countries that have not implemented measures to reduce the risk it poses to the general population. The aim of this study was to locate available evidence on exposure to residential radon and the regulations to monitor and control this across Central and South America, by conducting a review of the scientific literature and government documents in accordance with the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA) guidelines. This review included 31 studies which had taken measurements of radon in these countries. While Brazil, Argentina, and Peru have undertaken most research, no country in Central and South America has a national map of exposure to residential radon. The prevalence of exposure to radon was uneven, both among the different countries and within individual countries. No country has regulations to prevent the entry of radon into homes, and nine countries have not set maximum permissible concentrations for residential radon. There is a limited number of studies in South and Central America, with a limited spatial coverage, and there is a need to improve knowledge on exposure to residential radon and its effects, and for governments to take the necessary actions to introduce preventive measures in their statutory regulations. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Toxicology and Environmental Epidemiology: Feature Papers)
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