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Journal Water Pollution Control Federation

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Environmental health risk assessments based upon animal study results, epidemiology, quantitative structure activity relationships (QSARs), dose-response relationships, risk perception, and expert systems approaches, and the evaluation of mechanisms of carcinogenesis represent the focus for 1987. The term "biological risk assessment" was discussed by Clayson1 to describe that part of risk assessment concerned with the relevance of specific animal results to the induction of human cancer. Guidelines for health assessment of suspect developmental toxicants addressed evaluation of data from animal testing studies.2 Animal toxicity data on 200 chemicals and epidemiologic data on 30 chemicals was included within a data base3 designed to aid in the development of risk assessment methodologies. Reasons why animal cancer tests cannot be used to predict absolute human risk, but may be used to rank chemicals, were discussed by Ames et al.4 Kopfler and Craun5 summarized results of a symposium on the use of epidemiology studies for assessing the effects of chemical exposure in humans. Biochemical epidemiology was discussed by Fornia and Bertazzi6 for detecting individuals genetically susceptible to cancer. Other risk assessment methods included fish acute toxicity syndromes and their use in the QSAR approach to hazard assessment,7 use of dose response relationships to estimate risks to humans of chemicals at low doses,8 mathematical modeling of dose-response relationships,9 and evaluation of public responses to hazards.10 Fiskel and Covello11 discussed the application of expert systems and knowledge systems for risk assessment and risk management. The nature and sources of uncertainty in risk assessment and determination of probablistic results were addressed by Suter et al.12 Applications of risk assessment methods were discussed by Bro et al.13 concerning cancer risks of chemical contaminants in the Great Lakes, and by Lincoln14 for Superfund sites.


Reprinted with permission from Water Environment Research Journal, Copyright ©1982-1988, Water Environment Federation, Alexandria, Virginia, These papers may be downloaded for personal uses only. Any other use requires prior permission of the Water Environment Federation.



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