Fax: +44 1525 863420
Dr. Roel Smolders, Flemish Institute for Technical Research (VITO), BE, firstname.lastname@example.org
Biomonitoring is a useful tool to aid the assessment of exposure to many chemical substances but currently our ability to detect hazardous substances (or their metabolites and effects) may often exceed our understanding of the biological relevance of these results. There are well-established frameworks for developing and using BGVs in the occupational health field but these are limited in number (<100) and are only for data-rich substances that have been in use for some time. BGVs for new substances and those with undefined dose-response relationships are difficult to derive and the problems are compounded at environmental levels that are far below doses used in toxicity studies or those encountered in the occupational setting. A variety of approaches have been used, misused or are being developed to utilise biomonitoring data from environmental exposures.
The primary objective of this project is to develop and propose a scientifically defensible practical framework for establishing different types of biological monitoring guidance values (BGVs) for the assessment of environmental exposures to a wide range of anthropogenic and naturally occurring environmental contaminants. The framework will also address suggested uses of BGVs and their implications for public health. It is foreseen that the framework would define minimum data requirements for the derivation of BGVs and reflect the reliability and confidence that can be placed upon derived BGVs, e.g. whether based on in vitro, in vivo or QSAR data. Also, just as important, the framework will define guidelines where the setting of such guideline values would be uninformative or even misleading.