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A research agenda for environmental health aspects of chromium.

Environmental Health Perspectives
Environmental Health Perspectives
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  • Research Article
  • Biology
  • Chemistry
  • Ecology
  • Geography


Envisuronmenital Health Per.spectives Vol. 92, pp. 141-144, 1991 A Research Agenda for Environmental Health Aspects of Chromium by Michael Gochfeld*tt and Charlotte Witmerft§ Introduction The conference participants identified a variety of areas where additional research is required to under- stand how people are exposed to chromium and their potential risks. These can be divided into the following categories of questions and suggestions for study: Analytical chemistry: Improvements are needed in standardizing the analysis of chromium species such that it can be replicated in many laboratories. Methods for speciation of chromium in air and water samples appear adequate, but speciation and quantification in complex environmental or biological media require extensive rie- search and development. Sources of chromium: How does chromium enter the environment and in what form? When chromium- containing materials are incinerated, what determines the proportion in fly ash versus bottom ash? What is the form of chromium when it leaves the stack, and what it is ultimately deposited on the ground or in the lungs? What effect do chromium compounds have on air pollution control devices? Environmental fate and transport: Traditional ques- tions are complicated by the need to understand specia- tion of chromium, not only between the trivalent and hexavalent states, but among the different hexavalent salts including the insoluble, soluble, and the partially soluble salts, which appear to be the most significant for human health. The particle size distribution of chro- mium compounds on dust and soil requires study. The behavior of chromium species in different soils under different conditions varies in a complex fashion, and *Environmental andl Community Medicine, UMDNJ-Robert Woodl Johnson Medical School, Piscataway, NJ 08854. tEnvironmental and Occupational Health Sciences Institute, Pis- cataway, NJ 08854-5635. tJoint Graduate Program in Toxicology, Rutgers University, the State University, and UMD

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