Human biomonitoring (HBM)
The most appropriate scientific method to assess exposure to epoxies (or any other substance) is by analysing the presence of metabolites in blood or urine. The German Federal Ministry for Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety and the German Chemical Industry Association (VCI) initiated a collaboration in 2010 to provide funding to develop analytical methods to enable high quality standardised human biomonitoring (HBM). They:
- Selected 50 substances over a 10 years’ timeframe (substance prioritisation).
- Initiated the development of analytical methods to determine substances in blood or urine by expert institutes in collaboration with industry sponsors
- Improved the knowledge about newer chemicals to which the population might be increasingly exposed to or which may have an effect on health (not occupational/worker exposure).
- Focused on detecting very low concentrations in the urine or blood of the unexposed general public (known as background concentration).
The Human Biomonitoring Expert Panel suggested to analyse BADGE in 2017. The Epoxy Resins Committee and the BPA REACH consortium supported the initiative by providing expertise and information from the REACH dossier and supervising the analytical method development. To correctly estimate people’s exposure to BADGE requires selection of a specific metabolite as biomarker, determination of the half-life of the parent molecule (BADGE) and metabolites, and a best matrix selection for measuring the biomarker(s) (urine or blood/plasma).
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