Transport and dynamics of toxic pollutants in the natural environment and their effect on human health: research gaps and challenge

Andrew Hursthouse, George Kowalczyk

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review

19 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The source-pathway-receptor (SPR) approach to human exposure and risk assessment contains considerable uncertainty when using the refined modelling approaches to pollutant transport and dispersal, not least in how compounds of concern might be prioritised, proxy or indicator substances identified and the basic environmental and toxicological data collected. The impact of external environmental variables, urban systems and lifestyle is still poorly understood. This determines exposure of individuals and there are a number of methods being developed to provide more reliable spatial assessments. Within the human body, the dynamics of pollutants and effects on target organs from diffuse, transient sources of exposure sets ambitious challenges for traditional risk assessment approaches. Considerable potential exists in the application of, e.g. physiologically based pharmacokinetic (PBPK) models. The reduction in uncertainties associated with the effects of contaminants on humans, transport and dynamics influencing exposure, implications of adult versus child exposure and lifestyle and the development of realistic toxicological and exposure data are all highlighted as urgent research needs. The potential to integrate environmental with toxicological models provides the next phase of research opportunity and should be used to drive empirical and model assessments.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationENVIRONMENTAL GEOCHEMISTRY AND HEALTH
Pages165-187
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2009
EventMULTITUDE/SEGH Workshop 2007 - Liverpool, United Kingdom
Duration: 6 Jun 20077 Jun 2007

Publication series

NameENVIRONMENTAL GEOCHEMISTRY AND HEALTH
Number2
Volume31
ISSN (Print)0269-4042
ISSN (Electronic)1573-2983

Workshop

WorkshopMULTITUDE/SEGH Workshop 2007
CountryUnited Kingdom
CityLiverpool
Period6/06/077/06/07

Keywords

  • Environmental fate
  • Health risk assessment human exposure
  • PBPK modelling
  • Pollutant transport

Cite this