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Announcements/News Feed

News and announcements related to environmental impacts on human health, collected from a multitude of sources, especially Environmental Health News. To subscribe to this feed, visit healthandenvironment.org/CHE.xml.

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Webinar Thursday: Effects of Housing and Neighborhood on Children.
Wednesday, October 22, 2014event
On this webinar, you will hear the latest on the housing markets, learn about how housing and neighborhood effects affect children, and hear about organizations who work to promote housing quality and educational attainment.

A targeted health risk assessment following the Deep Water Horizon oil spill: polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon exposure in Vietnamese-American shrimp consumers.
Wednesday, October 22, 2014journal article
The risk assessment results show no acute health risks or excess cancer risk associated with consumption of shrimp containing levels of PAHs detected in our study, even among frequent shrimp consumers. Environmental Health Perspectives.

Gene-specific differential DNA methylation and chronic arsenic exposure in an epigenome-wide association study of adults in Bangladesh.
Wednesday, October 22, 2014journal article
Significant associations between arsenic exposure and gene-specific differential white blood cell DNA methylation were observed in this study, suggesting that epigenetic modifications may be an important pathway underlying arsenic toxicity. Environmental Health Perspectives.

Prenatal exposure to maternal cigarette smoking and DNA methylation: epigenome-wide association in a discovery sample of adolescents and replication in an independent cohort at birth through 17 years of age.
Wednesday, October 22, 2014journal article
Our findings suggest that modifications of DNA methylation associated with prenatal maternal smoking may persist in exposed offspring for many years -- at least until adolescence. Environmental Health Perspectives.

A birth cohort study to investigate the association between prenatal phthalate and bisphenol A exposures and fetal markers of metabolic dysfunction.
Wednesday, October 22, 2014journal article
Associations between maternal exposure to chemicals and markers of metabolic function appear to be potentially sex specific. Environmental Health.

A feasibility study of the association of exposure to biomass smoke with vascular function, inflammation, and cellular aging.
Wednesday, October 22, 2014journal article
Our results suggest that it is feasible to measure markers of vascular function and biomarkers of inflammation and oxidative stress in field studies of biomass smoke. Environmental Research.

Temporal variability in urinary levels of drinking water disinfection byproducts dichloroacetic acid and trichloroacetic acid among men.
Wednesday, October 22, 2014journal article
The poor reproducibility of the measured urinary DCAA and TCAA concentrations indicate that a single measurement may not accurately reflect individual long-term exposure. Environmental Research.

Interpreting biomarker data from the COPHES/DEMOCOPHES twin projects: using external exposure data to understand biomarker differences among countries.
Wednesday, October 22, 2014journal article
There was a highly significant correlation between national levels of fish consumption and mercury in hair, the strength of antismoking legislation was significantly related to urinary cotinine levels, and we were able to show indications that also urinary cadmium levels were associated with environmental quality and food quality. These results again show the potential of biomonitoring data to provide added value for (the evaluation of) evidence-informed policy making. Environmental Research.

Associations between blood lead level and substance use and sexually transmitted infection risk among adults in the United States.
Wednesday, October 22, 2014journal article
Results from this study suggested that lead exposure may contribute to substance use, sexual risk-taking, and sexually transmitted infection. However, given limitations inherent in the cross-sectional nature of the study, additional studies that use longitudinal data and measure detailed temporal information are warranted. Environmental Research.

New issue: Journal of Exposure Science and Environmental Epidemiology.
Wednesday, October 22, 2014announcement
Articles cover a wide range of exposures: dust, air pollution, PCE, pesticides, perchlorate, phthalates, VOCs, methylmercury, PCBs, lead, nickel and chromium, and more.

New document: The Madrid Statement on Poly- and Perfluoroalkyl Substances (PFASs).
Wednesday, October 22, 2014announcement
This scientific consensus statement, currently signed by nearly 200 scientists from 37 countries, summarizes the persistence and other harmful properties of PFASs stain and water repellents and proposes a road map to reduce their use in consumer products.

Maternal benzene exposure during pregnancy and risk of childhood acute lymphoblastic leukemia: a meta-analysis of epidemiologic studies.
Wednesday, October 22, 2014journal article
Childhood acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) was associated with maternal solvent, paint, and petroleum exposure during pregnancy. No association was found between ALL and maternal smoking during pregnancy. Avoidance of maternal occupational and environmental benzene exposure during pregnancy could contribute to a decrease in the risk of childhood ALL. PLOS One.

Call for story ideas: Big Data in Public Health.
Wednesday, October 22, 2014announcement
Do you have an intriguing story idea on innovative Big Data work and its impact on public health? Northwest Public Health is looking for article ideas for its 2015 issue on the theme, "Big Data in public health."

Risk factors for breast cancer in Iranian women: a hospital-based case-control study in Tabriz, Iran.
Wednesday, October 22, 2014journal article
The study revealed that the risk factors for breast cancer among women in the Tabriz area of Iran are related to the lifestyle [educational level, menopausal status, a high-fat diet, abortion, passive smoking, oral contraceptive use, stress, and migration]. Breastfeeding and a diet containing sufficient fruit and vegetables had protective roles against breast cancer. Journal of Breast Cancer.

Controversial chemical may leach into skin from cash receipts.
Wednesday, October 22, 2014news article
Touching cash register receipts can dramatically increase your body's absorption of a potentially dangerous chemical, bisphenol A (BPA), researchers report. HealthDay.
[See the study: Holding thermal receipt paper and eating food after using hand sanitizer results in high serum bioactive and urine total levels of bisphenol A (BPA)]

New reports target fracking.
Wednesday, October 22, 2014news article
A pair of studies released separately Wednesday shone an unfavorable light on fracking, with one claiming oil companies are skirting a ban on underground diesel injections and the other saying they employ the controversial technique near minority neighborhoods in areas including Kern County. Bakersfield Californian.
[See the reports: Fracking's Toxic Loophole and Drilling in California: Who's at Risk?]

US revisiting 'broken' workplace chemicals regulation process.
Wednesday, October 22, 2014news article
The U.S. government will soon begin receiving public suggestions on how federal regulators should update their oversight of toxic chemicals in the workplace. Inter Press Service.
[See the request for information: Chemical Management and Permissible Exposure Limits]

A host of chemical emissions seeping from oil and gas drilling.
Wednesday, October 22, 2014news article
A host of chemical emissions seep are seeping from oil and gas drilling pads with different ones coming from different places in the operation -- from the wellhead to tanks to valves, according to a new study. Denver Post, Colorado.
[See the study: Volatile organic compound emissions from the oil and natural gas industry in the Uintah Basin, Utah: oil and gas well pad emissions compared to ambient air composition]

How household plastics could ruin your sex life.
Wednesday, October 22, 2014news article
Phthalates are found in numerous items around the home, and even in food packaging. So it's a little worrying that they're being linked to, among other things, a decrease in libido in women. The Guardian.

Recalled, drug-tainted supplements still available for purchase.
Wednesday, October 22, 2014news article
Long after the Food and Drug Administration issued recalls for dietary supplements tainted with banned drugs, more than half of the tainted supplements were still available for purchase, a new study found. Reuters Health.

S.F. Fire Department joins study into breast cancer risks.
Wednesday, October 22, 2014news article
Members of the San Francisco Fire Department are working with researchers at UC Berkeley, UCSF and the Silent Spring Institute to find out whether exposure to toxic chemicals increases the risks of breast cancer in female firefighters. San Francisco Chronicle, California.
[See more about the study: Women Firefighters Biomonitoring Collaborative]

Mosquito-borne chikungunya virus has infected more than 200 Canadians.
Wednesday, October 22, 2014news article
Health Canada says more than 200 Canadians have been infected by a virus that has sickened hundreds of thousands of people in the Caribbean and spurred a state of emergency in Jamaica. Canadian Press.

Call to end use of mercury in vaccines.
Wednesday, October 22, 2014news article
Leading doctors have called for an end to the use of mercury in vaccines to avoid potential threat to health of children. The call has come at a time when India has agreed to ratify the Minamata Convention and phase out the use of the toxic element over the coming decade. Quezon City Business World, Philippines.

A 'very young field' of research tries to measure looming costs of ocean acidification.
Wednesday, October 22, 2014news article
While many of the effects of ocean acidification remain invisible, by the end of this century, things will have changed drastically. One estimate looking only at lost ecosystem protections, such as that provided by tropical reefs, cited an economic value of $1 trillion annually. ClimateWire.

The dirty effects of mountaintop removal mining.
Wednesday, October 22, 2014opinion/editorial
For decades, coal companies have been removing mountain peaks to haul away coal lying just underneath. More recently, scientists and regulators have been developing a clearer understanding of the environmental consequences. They aren't pretty. Washington Post.

Cancer rate rises for younger Trinidad and Tobago women.
Wednesday, October 22, 2014news article
The number of women under 35 being diagnosed with cancer in Trinidad and Tobago has doubled this year, according to statistics from the National Radiotherapy Centre. Trinidad & Tobago Express, Trinidad and Tobago.

Beyond BPAs: other food packaging chemicals to look out for.
Wednesday, October 22, 2014news article
There's a false sense of safety that comes with knowing just a little bit of information. For instance, if you've kept yourself somewhat informed, you know that BPA-laced food packaging is to be avoided. But while "BPA-Free" is certainly worth paying attention to, that's not all that needs to be watched out for. Los Angeles KCET TV, California.

Webinar Friday: A Framework to Guide Selection of Chemical Alternatives.
Tuesday, October 21, 2014event
The National Research Council report, A Framework to Guide Selection of Chemical Alternatives, builds on existing assessment frameworks to develop a more universally applicable decision framework for evaluating potentially safer chemical alternatives.

Urinary BPA measurements in children and mothers from six European member states: overall results and determinants of exposure.
Tuesday, October 21, 2014journal article
Exposure of the general European population was well below the current health-based guidance values and no participant had BPA values higher than the health-based guidance values. Environmental Research.

Mercury levels in pregnant women, children, and seafood from Mexico City.
Tuesday, October 21, 2014journal article
Mercury exposures in pregnant women and children from Mexico City, via biomarker studies, are generally 3-5 times greater than values reported in population surveys from the U.S., Canada, and elsewhere. Environmental Research.
[See a related study: Mercury contamination in fish and human hair from Hainan Island, South China Sea: implication for human exposure]

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