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Interactions between Occupational and Environmental Factors in Toxicology, Hazard Evaluation and Risk Assessment

Environmental and Ecotoxicology

  1. James Gomes MSc, PhD1,2,
  2. B. Meek MSc2

Published Online: 15 DEC 2009

DOI: 10.1002/9780470744307.gat100

General, Applied and Systems Toxicology

General, Applied and Systems Toxicology

How to Cite

Gomes, J. and Meek, B. 2009. Interactions between Occupational and Environmental Factors in Toxicology, Hazard Evaluation and Risk Assessment. General, Applied and Systems Toxicology. .

Author Information

  1. 1

    University of Ottawa, Faculty of Health Sciences, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

  2. 2

    University of Ottawa, McLaughlin Centre for Population Health Risk Assessment, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 15 DEC 2009

Abstract

Occupational and environmental exposures to toxicants rarely occur in isolation or singly and the potential for multiple exposures occurring with different degrees of overlap and multiple numbers of toxicants is high. Interactions occur when multiple chemicals are present in biological systems at the same time. The nature and the intensity of the interactions vary greatly from individual to individual and are dependent upon a number of factors. Primarily, the interaction response is dependent both upon the chemicals in question and the individual that is exposed. Chemical-associated factors include mechanisms or modes of action of the chemicals, timing of exposure and dose of exposure. Individual-associated factors include personal characteristics, lifestyle factors, physiological factors and genetic factors. An integrated systems-biology approach is necessary to evaluate the exposure, the interaction and the biological response. Newer technologies (omics) could play a significant role in assessing the risk of interaction from exposure to multiple toxins.

Keywords:

  • occupation;
  • environment;
  • interactions;
  • multiple chemical exposures;
  • toxicity;
  • risk assessment